How Nonprofits Should Prepare Their Inbound Marketing for the Next Natural Disaster

10/24/2018 3 min read Written by Jenny Traster

From hurricanes to earthquakes, tornadoes to floods, natural disasters can devastate a community – as well as your nonprofit’s effectiveness. It can take days, or even weeks, for communities to receive food, water or emergency services after a disaster, and the federal government is under no obligation to help. 

That means many may turn to your nonprofit for immediate assistance, making it essential you have a crisis inbound marketing plan in place that acts quickly and effectively to help those in dire need. The following tips can help make sure you do.

Prepare Your Team

While everyone on your marketing team may be eager to help, having too many people involved can derail even the simplest plans. Your nonprofit marketing plan is more likely to be streamlined and efficient if you select two key members to handle the most essential tasks.

Choose one team member to be the decision maker, with the authority to make the quick, necessary strategic decisions required for success. Choose another team member to be the spokesperson who will serve as the voice of your nonprofit.

Have a Social Media Plan

Social media has been playing an increasingly important role in keeping people updated during natural disasters, making it essential for your nonprofit to participate. Your nonprofit’s reputation can suffer if your organization seems to be ill-informed, unprepared to communicate, or remains silent altogether. When your reputation suffers, your financial support can likewise suffer.

Designate a team member to handle all social media interactions, with the aim of responding to inquiries as rapidly as possible. Having a slate of prewritten social media posts ready can improve response rates and social media support.

Create a social media post template with boilerplate text and branded elements, leaving space to add images and text customized to the specific disaster situation at hand.

Create a Unique Donation Page

Creating a unique donation page for disasters is another way to ready your nonprofit inbound marketing. Again use branded elements and boilerplate text, with the goal of having 80 percent of the page ready to go. Simply fill in specific text, images and a single call to action that tells visitors exactly what you want them to do to help with this particular disaster.

Make it as fast and easy as possible for people to make donations, with the ability to do so in two clicks or fewer. Immediately available funds are crucial during times of disaster, and the local community may soon be turning to you for help.

See Also: 7 A/B Tests to Try on Your Nonprofit's Donation Page

Prepare Your Homepage

Make sure your nonprofit’s homepage can be temporarily adjusted as needed to accommodate special news and alerts. Choices could include adding a news feed of some type to keep homepage visitors updated on the latest happenings, along with a banner or announcement that draws visitors to your disaster donation page.

Prepare Email Communications

When you’re creating boilerplate nonprofit marketing materials as part of your disaster plan, don’t forget to include email communications. Your nonprofit can create a campaign to raise funds and awareness using a series of automated emails that are nearly ready to go. Have the general email text and branding elements set, then simply add customized text and images as desired. Stick with a single CTA for each email that prompts supporters to complete a specific action.

See Also: How to Write Emails Your Donors Actually Want to Read

Send Frequent Updates

Ongoing communication is essential for any type of successful nonprofit inbound marketing, and this counts triple in times of disaster. Your first order of business is to make sure you have automated thank you emails set up to reply to all the donors who contributed to your disaster fundraising. You also want to send out frequent updates to keep donors and email subscribers informed on what’s happening within the community and your nonprofit’s progress in helping them.

With a lineup of readymade inbound marketing materials, a homepage set to accommodate special news, and designated team leaders, your nonprofit should be set to continue your great work during the next natural disaster while raising funds for those who need them most. Get even more guidance on nonprofit inbound marketing from LyntonWeb; contact us today.

By: Jenny Traster

With a love of HubSpot dating back to 2010, Jenny works with clients to put the pieces of the inbound marketing puzzle together, from content marketing and social media management to demand generation and lead nurturing. When she’s not digging through data or reading the latest in social media trends, you’re most likely to find her traveling, practicing yoga or hiking with her dogs in the great outdoors.

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