Translating Campaign Messages into Effective Fundraising Tools

SteegeThomson’s CASE D2 Conference session on shaping crisp campaign messages and turning them into compelling creative played to a capacity crowd. Our president, Pat LePera, presented with Jason Peevy, Auburn University’s associate vice president for communications, marketing and campaign strategy. Major session take-aways included:

  • Making messaging one of your first tasks lets you lay a strong foundation for campaign communications moving forward and creates a framework for storytelling – the most important communications tool.
  • Messages must be expandable into talking points and collapsible into a tight paragraph that explains the campaign’s arc.
  • A seamless connection should exist between campaign and institutional messaging because they both spring from your school’s mission and strategic plan. Strategic plans articulate the vision for the future that the campaign will fund.
  • Before you talk to donors, you must listen hard to what they have to say. The best messages rest on a strong discovery process that includes multiple voices and explores (and tests) what resonates with potential donors.
  • Messaging is never once and done. Refresh messages as gifts come in and you switch from stating aspirations (“we will do this”) to conveying impact (“we are doing this”).

In case you missed the session, you can download the presentation here.

If you’re preparing for a campaign, have messages that need to be refreshed, or could use help translating your messages into persuasive communications, we’d love to hear from you.