By Shea Morrissey, Senior Director of Client Success and Product Strategy with Hustle and
Rachel Gans Kemp, Senior Team Recruitment Manager at Event 360
We’re living in a world where it’s become increasingly difficult to connect meaningfully with our supporters. How do we have conversations when and where it really counts? One answer is through peer-to-peer text messaging with tools like Hustle. Hustle is a trusted leader in peer-to-peer text messaging, providing a platform for organizations to have authentic conversations with their supporters on a big scale. Many organizations, including Event 360, use Hustle for communicating information for events, fundraising campaigns, advocacy actions and volunteer management. Here are some tips for using texting tools in your work!
Three Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Tips from Rachel:
Target your audience. As with any communication, start with your goals in mind and drill down to the best audience to engage with in that goal. It might be your team captains, or your past participants who haven’t signed up for this year’s event yet, or your fundraisers over a certain dollar amount. A targeted, segmented audience makes your message more effective.
You are NOT a bot. Don’t act like one! Use your authentic voice, be personal, and have fun! People want to feel true connection with a PERSON. You’d be surprised how many people reply asking if we are real! It’s important for them to feel that you are a human and that you have their best interests at heart. Hustle has functionality to insert the contact’s name into your text message to make it more personal. Insert your name as well.
Determine your Goals: Engagement and/or Action. For many campaigns, our goal is engagement. To increase engagement, end your initial text with a question, to encourage recipients to apply and open the door to further communication. Then have some reply scripts saved so you can answer their questions quickly, saving time. With some campaigns, we have discovered that our goal is to quickly and clearly convey important information. For example, informing participants of a last-minute change to an event, or alerting them to bad weather. Or if we do not have a lot of staff resources available to have extended engaged conversations. In these cases, we don’t need or want to engage contacts with a long back-and-forth conversation or require them to answer a question to get the information. In those cases, present the information they need clearly in the first text, and provide a link to a webpage where they can get more details.
Three Advocacy Tips from Shea:
Short and Sweet. It can be tempting when we’re reaching out about complex issues and/or legislation to fit everything someone needs to know in the first text message. Long texts can be overwhelming to the eye of the reader and also cause issues with deliverability. Address the person personally, let them know why you’re reaching out, and end your message with a question to engage them.
One List, One Phone Number. A benefit of Hustle is that you can reach out to the same supporters over time from the same phone number. This allows them to save you in their contacts and recognize the number. This also keeps the entire conversation in the same text thread on their phone, which can help engage people over time with various types of advocacy related actions (sign a petition, make a call, volunteer). Leverage that text thread and relationship.
Follow-up with Non-Responders. Some supporters have become accustomed to only hearing from bots, and sometimes don’t realize that it is a real person initiating a conversation. Use Hustle’s targeting features to follow-up with people who didn’t initially respond to your text.
Hustle creates a space in which a simple question or short text can turn into a conversation. That conversation turns into a relationship that inspires action. It’s a delightful experience to connect with people in this way and support their intuition to do good and stay involved in the causes that are important to them.
Hustle is another incredible bridge to connect with constituencies and build deeper relationships. You can read more about Hustle’s Best Practices and other reasons why Event 360 is passionate about using this new platform. If you are intrigued and want to learn more about partnering with Hustle and Event 360, contact us!
Shea Morrissey is the Senior Director of Client Success and Product Strategy at Hustle, working with national nonprofits like Sierra Club and Planned Parenthood. Outside of work, you might find them biking around the bay area or splashing in the Pacific. They live in Oakland, CA.
Rachel Gans Kemp is the Senior Team Recruitment Manager at Event 360. She has over a decade of experience working with non profits across the country, focusing on enhancing their recruitment, retention and overall event efficiencies. Beyond this, Rachel fills her time in Oregon with as much fresh air and movement as possible!