Campaign planning for charities: from theory to practice

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
04 Mar 2019

A successful digital campaign can help you reach a new audience, engage your existing supporters or even raise more funds for your cause. However, you need to be organised to create a successful campaign. We’ve recently run a webinar sharing tips and tricks on campaign planning for charities and how to be more successful. If you’ve missed it, here’s what you need to know.

Before we begin, we want to clarify what we mean by ‘campaign’.

A campaign is a series of posts around one theme, which aims to bring your audience together. This could be to highlight your work, to show how you’re making an impact or how you can inspire and encourage donations.

Now that we’ve got that out the way, let’s dive right in!

What are the benefits of running a campaign?

There are many benefits to running a campaign online, including:

  • An improved presence on social media
  • A more engaged audience
  • Reaching a new audience
  • Collaborating with colleagues
  • More money/sign-ups/video views etc

Before you can run a campaign, you need to plan it and that means understanding the theory behind running a successful campaign.

Simple steps to running a successful campaign

1. Strategy

Decide on your objectives (what you want to achieve) and then turn those into SMART goals. SMART stands for: specific, measurable, achievable, realistic and time-bound. So a SMART goal would be: Get 1,000 views of our video on Giving Tuesday.

Once you’ve got your objectives and set SMART goals, decide on the theme of your campaign and who your target audience is – who specifically are you trying to reach?

2. Content and Channels

Now that you know the audience you’re trying to reach, what messaging would work for them and where is the best place to reach them? Decide which channels you’re going to use as well as the frequency of your posts. For eg, is your campaign one day (like on Giving Tuesday) or is it a week, month or even longer? Would this campaign work on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram or just on LinkedIn?

Think about what story you can tell – don’t just make an ask! How can you bring people on a journey so that they’ll want to support you when you do make the ask? Our platform has a handy feature just for this, called Story Builder. It’s a template of suggested posts that you can edit with your own copy and images.

Once you’ve decided on your target audience, your key messages and the channels you’ll reach them on, you can start scheduling your content.

You can use the Lightful platform to start scheduling your content, through our calendar. You can choose which platforms to post to, upload your own images, videos or GIFs or simply use our inbuilt image and GIF library. By scheduling and planning your content in advance, it will help you to be more organised and save you time too.

3. Support and engagement

Try to involve your colleagues in the campaign – where appropriate. Within Lightful, you can invite colleagues or volunteers to create posts, however you retain control by approving the posts before they go live. This helps you ensure that they are on brand and in the right tone of voice.

Even if you’ve scheduled posts in advance, you must monitor your campaign in real-time. This is so that you can respond to any activity and engage with your supporters, as well as keep the momentum going.

It’s important to be flexible too and to create real-time posts if needed – particularly if there is a trending hashtag that you can take advantage of.

Don’t forget to thank your supporters – especially if you’ve asked them to take an action (such as make a donation or volunteer). This will help strengthen your relationship with them and help in future campaigns.

4. Measure your success

If you want to know if your campaign has been successful, you’ll need to measure it. This goes back to the SMART goals that you set. Some of the metrics you might want to measure are: reach, engagement, traffic and donations.

Within Lightful, you can add tags to group the content together. Using our analytics, you can then compare how different groups or topics of content has performed. For example, has content about volunteering had a higher engagement than posts around fundraising? Or did content where you told a story, perform better than content about upcoming events? Use the insights gained to help shape your next campaign.

You can also find our webinar’s slides below. If you want to stay up-to-date about our next webinars, make sure you subscribe to our newsletter!

Campaign planning from start to finish from Lightful

Latest articles

#ReclaimSocial 2023 - Join us on 6 February

#ReclaimSocial returns on 6 February for its sixth anniversary.

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
18 Jan 2023
Grantmaking: beyond the financials - An interview with IKI Small Grants

In a world of growing uncertainty, small and local non-profit organisations often find themselves with competing priorities and struggle to plan how to allocate their available resources. Despite the increasing demand for their vital work, they are not always able to allocate the funds they receive to strategic planning and future growth.

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
03 Jan 2023

Related posts

#ReclaimSocial 2023 - Join us on 6 February

#ReclaimSocial returns on 6 February for its sixth anniversary.

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
18 Jan 2023
The WHYs and the HOWs of Digital Strategy for nonprofits

As the world becomes more digitally-focused, it’s essential for nonprofits to have a digital presence. With more and more options for online engagement, we know that this can be challenging for nonprofits to tackle. But, we also know that it is a huge opportunity to increase audience engagement, awareness and fundraising. To help nonprofits navigate this, we’re going to explore the “whys” and “hows” of creating a nonprofit digital strategy. We’re even providing a free digital strategy canvas to help nonprofits improve their online presence in just a few steps.

Tereza Litsa
Digital Engagement Manager
02 Jan 2023

See other ways Lightful can help

What we do
Who we help

Contact us

Want to learn more?

Email Pumulo and start a conversation

Pumulo Banda
Relationship Manager

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.