Keeping the experience personalised
With compelling anecdotal proof of the importance of content, Simpson said The Smith Family has very clear ideas about the next phases of development.
"Personalisation will be a big focus for us," she said. "We've realised that being able to present donors with information about causes they're most likely to be interested in, based on previous behaviour, can play a key role in their decision-making process."
The Smith Family is also interested to see how Sitecore can further improve the user experience.
"For example, we'd like to create a donor portal where sponsors can feel more connected to the students they're supporting, by being able to see letters from them, get reminders to send a birthday card or receive updates on their sponsored student's progress", she said. "This would provide a self-service destination, similar to online banking, which will incentivise users to visit the site more regularly.
"The portal would also enable us to evidence exactly how their dollars have made an impact on a student's life, which is hugely rewarding for donors and will play a key part in motivating them to donate regularly."
From a fundraising point of view, it was critical to focus on the core market stats that are growing and that the charity has some competitive advantage in, Simpson said.
"We're also looking at specific channels for us that we're continuing to invest in," she said. "We support 34,000 disadvantaged children on scholarships and we support them right through their schooling to tertiary education. So long-term, we want to continue to build our partnerships with mums and dads, with our major donors and corporate channels.
"All our fundraising is based around how to develop quite long-term relationships across our major segments. The challenge with digital for us is how to continue to leverage it to build long-term relationships."
Even though digital continues to play a vital part in The Smith family's future, Simpson saw direct mail as continuing to be an effective personalised touchpoint.
"There's a lot of talk about direct mail and we've been hit with the Australia Post charges like everyone else, but direct mail is still a wonderful channel for us," she said. "People don't receive that much mail anymore so they love to open it. So even though digital is still a big part of our future and our present, we don't see direct mail as being any less important.
"In fact, it is still a vital and vibrant part of our marketing mix and is going to continue to evolve as we continue to innovate in that space.
Source: CMO Australia
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