Current news and events are not only a reflection of our society- they shape our individual perceptions, too. So at the most basic level, you should know what is going on in the news so that you can recognize the climate of the society in which you live and work. But consider taking it a step further and begin utilizing current events to increase your organization’s funding.
Using current events is a great way to create awareness for your organization, boost your platform, and create change. So let's break down the importance of news and current events to your nonprofit and how to utilize it effectively:
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When looking for news and current events to use to fundraise and bring awareness to your cause/organization, there are a variety of areas and topics to look at:
Become an Expert in Your Field
Keeping up to date on current events- and especially on news directly affecting your sector- will help you to set yourself up as an expert in your field. As a representative of your organization, it is important that you know as much as you can about your cause and your sector. When talking to your constituents, you want to show them you are well-versed and knowledgeable about your cause, your community, and the nonprofit field as a whole.
Sharing, Engaging, and Calling Your Audience to Action
Let’s face it, humans tend to be reactive. And nothing gets us to take action quite as well as an emotional reaction Using current events can lead people to act- and you want to harness this and direct people to your organization to help your cause by volunteering or donating. When utilizing current news and events, it always starts by sharing. Share a news article or video about the current events that impact your cause. Share on social media, your website, a physical newsletter, or any other place you reach your constituents.
The next step is engaging your audience in the current events. Invoke a dialogue, talk about how it affects your organization, your cause, or the recipients of your programs/services. Engaging your audience makes them feel more connected to the event and to you, which will make them more likely to want to get involved in your cause.
Once your audience (e.g., prospective donors and other constituents) are engaged and you have created the relationship, it is time for a call to action. Tell them the next step to take- whether that’s with your organization or not. People want to know how to help. Especially when reacting to a news story or current event, they may not know the best steps to take. Guide them with clear and concise calls to action on ways to get involved with your organization.
How do you use news to engage your constituents and advance your organization? Let us know here! And, as always, other comments and questions are welcomed and appreciated!