Lunchtime Links: Don’t Beat Around the Bush

Why your organization should use detailed language in its calls to action. Also: how to keep communication open among your telecommuting employees.

Your calls to action need help, and here’s some information to support that theory:

According to a recent survey, most nonprofit marketers admit to using vague language such as “help” and “support.” But with stronger wording, you might be able to encourage something a little closer to what you actually want: results.

There are too many ways to help and support. If you want people to do something, you have to be clear and specific about what that thing is and how they should do it.

How clear language can lead to more volunteer action, and more, in today’s Lunchtime Links:

Be more specific: Need a stronger handle on your call-to-action language? Try a little clarity. Consultant Kivi Leroux Miller, taking a cue from fundraising expert Gail Perry, has some advice on how to make the most of words you use in fundraising and volunteer recruitment campaigns. Among the tips: Use more specific language when suggesting ways volunteers can help your organization, such as “donate online” or “RSVP for our training.” Then, focus on sharing the results of their actions. “There are too many ways to ‘help’ and ‘support,’” Leroux Miller writes on her blog. “If you want people to do something, you have to be clear and specific about what that thing is and how they should do it.”

Strengthen the communication lines: There are plenty of advantages and disadvantages to having employees work from home. But, how can you ensure that everyone’s on the same page when they’re not in the same room? An easy-to-use online space might be the solution—especially when paired with other effective tools. “Find the right tools to provide a sense of community. Use an intranet platform to share resources, keep a centralized calendar (Google works well), and present a consistent customer phone experience using an online system such as RingCentral,” writes contributor Rosemary O’Neill, cofounder and president of the community online platform maker Social Strata. But the tools may not matter as much as the utility being provided, she adds: “You’ll also need some sort of digital watercooler. The tool you use is less important than the fact that you make space for those off-topic, relationship-building discussions.” Any ideas you’d like to add to O’Neill’s list?

YouTube like a pro: YouTube is getting down to business—and if you’re watching, you might just benefit, big time. The online video hub’s new “YouTube Pro Series” encourages users to treat their channels more like an investment than a social network, according to Katie Ingram of CMSWire. The video series, which discusses topics such as collaborating with advertisers and reviewing contracts, is one of several business-friendly moves by the Google-owned company, including the launch of a service that allows creators to charge for videos and an update to its analytics platform.

How has your organization tapped into YouTube—beyond the obvious approaches? Share your ideas in the comment section below.


Anita Ferrer

By Anita Ferrer

Anita Ferrer is a contributor to Associations Now. MORE

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