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Free Guide:

Engaging Younger Donors Online with Inbound Marketing An Introductory Guide on How Your Nonprofit Can Reach an Influential Younger Demographic

A Publication of


IS THIS EBOOK RIGHT FOR ME? Not quite sure if this ebook is right for you? See the below description to determine if your level matches the content you are about to read.


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Introductory content is for nonprofit marketers who are new to the subject. This content typically includes step-by-step instructions on how to get started with this aspect of inbound marketing and learn its fundamentals. After reading it, you will be able to execute basic marketing tactics related to the topic for your organization.

INTERMEDIATE Intermediate content is for nonprofit marketers who are familiar with the subject but have only basic experience in executing strategies and tactics on the topic. This content typically covers the fundamentals and moves on to reveal more complex functions and examples. After reading it, you will feel comfortable leading projects with this aspect of inbound marketing.

ADVANCED Advanced content is for nonprofit marketers who are, or want to be, experts on the subject. In it, we walk you through advanced features of this aspect of inbound marketing and help you develop complete mastery of the subject. After reading it, you will feel ready not only to execute strategies and tactics, but also to teach others how to be successful.









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Engage Younger Donors Online with Inbound Marketing By Hiba Haider

Hiba Haider is currently attending Babson College and majoring in Marketing and

Global Business Management. She has a passion for social entrepreneurship and has been working for the nonprofit team at HubSpot since June 2012. Working at HubSpot has allowed Hiba to bring together her love for marketing and helping others into one.

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Introduction /6 Website Optimization /7 Social Media /9 Email Marketing /14 Optimize for Mobile /17

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Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.

-Dr. Seuss

The magnificent Dr. Seuss provided us with wisdom applicable to

all aspects of life and to all ages. In order to succeed as Dr. Seuss did, your nonprofit needs to create and share a story to bridge the widening gap between generations to make your cause known by all. Today’s generation is one captivated by technology, social media, and Justin Beiber. And if there is one thing we know for certain about these Millennials, individuals between the ages of 20-35, is that they are powerful. When it comes to philanthropy, the youth of America is more involved and energetic than ever before. So what does this mean for your nonprofit? It’s crucial to captivate this young audience who is spending a large percent of their time online. Inbound marketing is an avenue to reach these students, activists, and

young entrepreneurs to be avid supporters of your cause. This guide is all you need to get your organization started with the basics!



Website Optimization


65% of Millennials prefer to learn about your nonprofit from your website. Optimizing your nonprofit website with SEO and effective calls to action is only half the battle. 88% of Millennials turn to your ‘About Us’ page on their first visit to your website to learn more about your mission. They’re also looking at how you use your donations. Getting your donors to your website is your first challenge. But what they do when they get there is

equally important.

What your nonprofit should do: •

Have an actionable homepage – make it clear what you want your visitors to do (i.e. donate, volunteer, or register for an event).

Have a clear and concise “About Us” page that describes your mission and vision.

Show how your organization use its donations by sharing stories by video or photos of your top donors or volunteers.

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Social Media


55% of Millennials prefer Facebook and Twitter as an information source. Rewind about 10 years and social media was nothing more than a radical idea of some kids at Harvard and not even on nonprofits

radars. However, today social media is a driving force for many organizations when it comes to spreading awareness and gaining supporters. For your nonprofit, Facebook and Twitter have both collectively revolutionized the way volunteers, supporters, and donors interact with their favorite causes. While other platforms such as LinkedIn, Pinterest

and Google Plus are following the trend, these two social media giants are a good starting point for any nonprofit to launch a social media campaign, including yours.

Tip: Include social media buttons on your website and in your

email marketing to start a following.

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67% of Millennials have interacted with a nonprofit on Facebook. Facebook has become the second most important destination for your supporters to find your organization. It’s a great place for your organization to share valuable information with your audiences and engage with donors and volunteers in real time. But what do you post or share on Facebook? Millennials are looking for information on upcoming events, statistics about your cause,

organizational news, volunteer opportunities, and videos. Decide what your organization has to offer today, and share it.

3 things you can do on Facebook today: •

Create your Nonprofit Facebook page.

Post a video, story or photo about a superstar donor or volunteer.

Include social media icons on your website, blog, and in your next email to drive supporters to your social spaces.

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87% of Millennials follow a nonprofit on Twitter. Similar to what Facebook has mastered, the unexpected rise of Twitter has made it possible for people to find and converse with others with like interests online. Through this form of microblogging, many Millennials find themselves adding their

constant stream of consciousness to the world’s conversations about current events and pop culture. Millennials are itching to get involved with your organization and all you have to do is give them the opportunity to interact with you.

Interact with supporters on Twitter today: •

Create your free Twitter account.

Find your 10 biggest donors on Twitter and follow them.

Personally thank donors, volunteers, and participants by

tweeting at them. •

Post upcoming event information or simply ask for donations for your annual appeal.

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How Millennials interact on Twitter 87%

Following nonprofits on Twitter


Retweeting nonprofit’s tweets


Complimenting nonprofits


Using hashtags about nonprofits

46 %

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Using Twitter to see information about nonprofits



Email Marketing


47% of Millennials prefer to obtain information about nonprofits via email. Email has become one of the most effective tools for marketers in any industry. It should be the one of, if not the number one avenue for your organization to communicate with your younger donors directly. Making sure each email you send speaks to your target audience and clearly states what action you would like them to take. It’s also important to find a happy medium on the number of emails you send so they remain relevant and important without being disruptive. Plan out your emails in advance over a 3-6 month

period and tie them to your upcoming campaigns and events.

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What email topics attract a Millennial the most? Survey says‌


61% 47% 32%

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Optimize for Mobile


77% of Millennials own smartphones. The potential of reaching the younger generation on a mobile device is more common than any other generation. This is the perfect reason your nonprofit should consider optimizing your website and emails templates for mobile devices. You can take it one step further and optimize both for tablets and iPads as well.

Smartphones are also being used for accessing social platforms like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. The conversation an organization has with an individual no longer needs to end at 5pm, since the majority of people can access your nonprofit information throughout the day. This is also gives you the opportunity to interact in real time with your supporters.

What do Millennials do on their smartphones anyway?

51%- Facebook

37%- Events

31%- Twitter

33%- Shared News

25%- Contest voting

25%- Videos + Photos

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And will you succeed? Yes indeed, yes indeed! Ninetyeight and three-quarters percent guaranteed.…

-Dr. Seuss

Applying these best practices to your nonprofit’s strategy is an undisputed way to transform your marketing team, raise awareness and bring in donations from a passionate, young new donor base. The statistics alone prove that there is value in these new marketing approaches. Website optimization, social media, email, and mobile are the first tools to focus on to engage the younger generation today.

Plus if you don’t believe, have a little faith in Dr. Seuss. He always knows what he’s talking about.

All statistics are from the 2012 Millennial Impact Report.


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