Marrying Communications And Marketing

February 14, 2017       THE NONPROFIT TIMES      

Pairing Development and Marketing departments together is like putting toppings on an ice cream sundae, they’re pretty good apart, but so much better together. Aiding communication between marketing and communications is the key to creating fundraising with great messaging, visuals, and storytelling.

“The Marriage of Development and Marketing/Communications,” a presentation at the Bridge to Integrated Marketing and Fundraising Conference in National Harbor, Md., gave ideas on these two departments can collaborate successfully and efficiently.

    Shriee Skinner, MBA, MNM, CMP, director of resource development at Habitat for Humanity of Northern Virginia and Jasmine Musgrave, communications associate and head website administrator for EasterSeals serving Washington, D.C, Maryland, and Virginia lead the session. Some of their key points were:

  • The more you know your audience, the more you can appeal to their interests. Analyzing the demographics of current and prospective donors allows you to choose what channels you rely on for messaging.
  • When forming a messaging strategy and platform, create comprehensive and consistent materials to use.
  • Meeting regularly and creating an integrated timeline for each project allows both departments to set priorities and goals and know who is doing what.
  • Know what you want your message to be. Choosing one primary message creates clarity for donors. Keep your desired outcome in mind when forming the message.
  • Avoid common pitfalls such as thinking one side is more important than another or creating timelines that are too aggressive or don’t take other tasks into consideration.