Are you funny? Is your nonprofit funny? How exactly do you get creative with writing content; whether it's in your emails, your subject lines, or your blog posts? If your nonprofit feeds the creative flame with passion and storytelling, you'll start getting somewhere. And you'll be a lot more likely to create that flame with humor.
We talked about this today at the Salsa Community Conference in the session: Getting Creative With Your Content. The room wasn't full, and when one panelist got up to speak, he had every intention of bringing more bodies into the room. He did so, creatively, by asking the audience to start clapping and wooing in excitement (over nothing). He told us to watch the door; we waited and cheered. At the sound of our cheers, about 5 more people meandered in. And then we got into the nitty gritty of content with Roz Lemieux, Michelle Frey, and John Hlinko.
You can't write with creativity and passion if you are writing for your organization, you need to write for your audience. You need to relate to your audience, be your audience. One way to do this is to check out where your audience is; what are they talking about? What hashtags are they trending? What is their local jargon? You may say Sustainable, they may say Green. You say tomato, I say tomahto. It is important to make sure you are using people's stories in their own voices to convey your message; to meet your audience where they are.
Just how do you decide what hashtags are trending, and what keywords are most ideal for your audience? Roz Lemieux introduced a new tool that she's releasing next week that does just that. Attentive.ly says that it will "Turn your static email list into a dynamic online community by discovering the social media influence of your most connected contacts," with the slogan, "Listen. Engage. Attentive.ly."
How does your nonprofit listen? What tools or methods do you use to actively listen and engage? Maybe you use your subject lines to communicate what you've heard, and foster more engagement with your constituents. The best practice for finding the most efficient subject line is testing. Test, test, test. Test 5 or 6 different subject lines (some with humor, of course), and determine which gets the best reaction. Best does not necessarily consist of the most open rates, but take a look at open rates combined with click throughs, donations, etc. Where are people getting to your actions? If it's via your emails, then you're doing something right.
When the panelists were asked final sentiments about creating creative content, the audience was told: Pay attention and relate it back. How will you relate it back?