Marts & Lundy’s Strategic Communications team brings decades of experience to our work with clients across the nonprofit spectrum. Most members of our team have served as frontline fundraisers. As a result, we are able to see communications through the eyes of donors.
Our process begins with developing the positioning platform – the key messages and talking points that will resonate with an external donor audience and inform the case for support. This work includes one-on-one and small-group interviews with a mix of senior administrators, as well as key volunteers and donors who can offer an external perspective on the organisation and its impact. Our purpose at this stage is to connect with individuals who can help us capture the voice and tone of the organisation and begin to tease out responses to these fundamental questions:
- Why us? What is it about the organisation that merits consideration of a person’s philanthropic support? What are your strengths and points of distinction? What opportunities lie ahead? How does your vision for the future inspire donors?
- Why you? Why the donor? Why is there a need for philanthropy to strengthen and advance the organisation? How will the generosity of donors advance the organisation’s work and, importantly, its wider or specific impact on society?
- Why now? Is there a sense of urgency to this campaign and the priorities that have been outlined?
The creation of the messaging platform will segue into the development of the campaign prospectus (preliminary case statement). Our process includes up to three drafts of the prospectus, allowing for feedback from leadership to refine and strengthen the document so that it represents the organisation’s strengths and future plans in the most compelling way.
The prospectus is intended for use with feasibility study interviews and therefore must resonate with the organisation’s top donor prospects. Typically, these are smart, savvy, busy individuals who will not spend time reading long, dense documents in preparation for their interviews. Therefore, the prospectus must balance brevity with substance and must marry logic with emotion (Why does this matter to me?). Our goal is always to move away from “industry-speak” to language that is accessible to and motivating for an external audience.