Text-to-Give Messaging: 4 Strategies to Boost Conversions

Text-to-Give Messaging: 4 Strategies to Boost Conversions

Julia Claire Campbell Fundraising, Nonprofits, Technology

Imagine that you’re a donor who recently opted into an animal welfare nonprofit’s text-to-give campaign, hoping to give to a great cause. However, you’re met with uninspiring, generic messages that don’t show how your donations will make an impact and feel impersonal. As a result, you opt-out of the campaign and look toward donating to another organization.

To avoid this situation from happening with your nonprofit’s text-to-give campaign, you need to create emotionally compelling and persuasive messages that convince your donors to give (and give right away!). After all, when you’re operating under tight fundraising deadlines, you need supporters to act with urgency so you can meet your goals and push forward your mission. 

In this article, we’ll cover the top strategies to increase your donor conversion rate and meet your text-to-give fundraising objectives. Let’s begin.

1. Leverage storytelling in your text-to-give messaging

Storytelling has been around for centuries, and for good reason! People like to root for a hero and feel a human connection. This is especially true for your nonprofit’s communications. By incorporating storytelling into your text-to-give messages and appeals, you can foster stronger relationships with your supporters and ignite giving at a large scale.

Use these strategies to tell a compelling story:

  • Highlight a protagonist: Every story needs a main character! Spotlight a beneficiary your organization has helped and share their impact story with their permission. For example, a healthcare nonprofit might tell the story in their text-to-donate appeal of how 10-year-old Brianna received lifesaving surgery thanks to donors’ support.
  • Show the before and after: Explain the situation your hero was in before your nonprofit helped and after. This helps to illustrate the role of donations in driving change in your community while adding credibility to your nonprofit, helping to build trust with supporters. 
  • Connect the story back to your mission: Tie your story back to your nonprofit’s core purpose so supporters understand how their donations can help even more individuals receive this same support. 

Remember to keep your stories short and sweet so you can sustain your supporters’ attention. You can always share a link to a blog post on your website that tells a beneficiary’s story in greater detail. This is also a great way to encourage supporters to explore your cause further on your website and potentially sign up for more ways to get involved, like joining your email newsletter or applying to volunteer. 

2. Include multimedia elements

Compelling visuals can help to supplement your stories and catch your audience’s eye, increasing the likelihood that they’ll read and engage with your messages. Whether you’re conducting community outreach for your church or supporting a specific fundraising campaign for your nonprofit, sharing attention-grabbing visuals will go a long way. For example, you might share:

  • Photos: Share pictures of the beneficiaries you’ve helped, your nonprofit’s volunteers in action, your staff, or any other relevant image that can help to legitimize your organization and show the powerful work you’re doing in the community. 
  • Videos: Videos are another great storytelling tool. Consider filming a fundraising video that highlights why you’re asking for revenue and how the funds will be used. You might also create a testimonial video that features interviews from the beneficiaries you’ve helped. 
  • Graphics: Create compelling graphics, like infographics, that help to illustrate the impact your nonprofit is making. For example, you might generate an infographic displaying how much you raised from your last fundraising campaign and the difference it’s made in the community. This way, you can prove that your nonprofit is using donations as promised to meet its mission. 

You can also add other types of multimedia elements, like emojis or gifs, to make your texts more visually appealing. This can help to break up longer messages and keep your subscribers engaged. 

3. Personalize your text messages

Donors will be much less receptive to a text message that begins with “Dear Valued Donor” than one that begins with their own name. However, manually messaging each of your supporters will be nearly impossible and eat up way too much of your team’s time. Instead, Tatango’s guide to nonprofit text messaging recommends leveraging software with built-in automation and personalization capabilities so you can greet each of your donors by their preferred first names in all of your messages. 

The right text messaging platform will also come with a variety of segmentation capabilities, allowing you to create highly relevant text streams that will inspire your different types of supporters. This way, you can create messages that are meaningful to different audiences and are more likely to propel them to act. 

You should be able to segment your contact list based on a variety of factors, including:

  • Donation frequency, recency, and amount
  • Location
  • Involvement in your nonprofit
  • Demographics 

This can be helpful for getting certain groups of supporters to act. For example, you might create a segment for volunteers where you can send out available opportunities and shifts to help out at events, programs, and more. Plus, you can prompt volunteers to play an even more rewarding role in your organization by donating. 

4. Create a clear call to action

A call to action is a brief phrase or sentence that gets to the point of what you want your supporters to do. Keep the following best practices in mind to create effective calls to action:

  • Stick to one per message: Asking your donors to complete more than one action in a single text message, such as registering for your event and donating to your cause, can overwhelm them and cause donors to refrain from taking any action. Instead, create just one ask and separate your requests into different messages as needed. 
  • Be straightforward and specific: Ask supporters to give a certain amount to your fundraising campaign to take the guesswork out of how much they should donate. For example, you might say “Donate $10 today to support our mission to end hunger this holiday season!” or “Give a minimum of $20 by midnight to have your gift matched!”. As seen in these examples, it’s also important to create immediacy by adding a time-bound element to your texts. This will prompt supporters to give sooner rather than later and lead to an increase in donations
  • Include a mobile-friendly link to your donation page: Make it as easy as possible for supporters to act on your requests, no matter where they are, by providing a mobile-friendly link to your donation page. Supporters should be able to simply tap on the link to your giving page and complete the donation process in just a few moments right from their phones. 

You can also provide links to other relevant resources that would be helpful in the context of your calls to action. For example, let’s say you’re encouraging new donors to sign up to volunteer. Getting Attention’s guide to volunteer recruitment recommends sending a link to a landing page on your website that overviews your volunteer program and includes an embedded application form. This makes it very simple and convenient for your supporters to complete your requests. 

Wrapping Up

Churches, associations, and so many other organizations find success through powerful text-to-give campaigns. Your nonprofit can follow their lead by creating high-impact, emotionally compelling texts that inspire donors to give. Use your text messaging platform to track metrics, like open rate and click-throughs, so you can adjust your strategy as needed.