By Jeri Curry, Enset
It’s a crowded digital world for nonprofits and philanthropies, which is why it’s more important than ever for organizations to cut through the noise by being effective online. With the never-ending development of new technologies combined with most nonprofits’ limited resources of time and money, the digital world can be overwhelming. But with the right strategy and tools, being effective online is less complicated than you think.
Here are steps every nonprofit organization can take to improve overall digital effectiveness:
The starting point for nonprofits just beginning their digital journey — and even for those that already have their online assets in place — is to create an organizational digital strategy. Some of the following questions may help direct the development of a plan:
We often refer to online effectiveness as having your digital house in order, which starts with a solid foundation — your digital assets. Start with a quick evaluation to ensure your organization has the basics in place:
Building a digital community is not all that different than how most organizations built their current networks offline. It has always been critical to the health of a nonprofit to establish a strong connection with its targeted communities, including donors, external stakeholders and the beneficiaries of the organization’s mission. A few ideas to help foster an online community:
Civil Society organizations around the world are varied and diverse — not least in size, funding and focus — but they share a common goal when it comes to improving people’s lives and building equitable societies.
Created in direct response to the issues of trust and establishing legitimacy within the sector, the .ngo domain and the corresponding domain .ong for use in romance language countries were released as validated online identities exclusively for the use of registered NGOs and nonprofit organizations globally.
The .ngo domain offers a way for organizations globally to pull together and express solidarity as a united virtual community to both protect and enhance Civil Society’s digital space and enhance the global good. Until the release of the new domains, most nonprofits have chosen to identify their organizations online utilizing the .org domain.
Despite the popularity of.org, this domain does not guarantee legitimate status as a charitable nonprofit. It is open to all Internet users for organizational, personal, political and corporate use. However, at a time when non-profits working on critical issues in their communities need to be able to demonstrate to local constituencies and donors alike that they are genuine and can be trusted, many are adopting the .ngo or .ong domains. The .ngo domain is the only globally recognized digital space that represents a third-party verified nonprofit.
When donors are choosing their favorite causes to support, they often look to an organization’s website to validate and verify that their donations are supporting credible nonprofits — yet another reason to get your digital house in order. Make sure you are showing donors that your organization is a verified and credible nonprofit. The .ngo is a simple and easy way to show this. Within the .ngo protected digital space, donors of all kinds can give confidently and know they are supporting organizations that are mission-focused, legitimate and working toward building increased accountability, transparency and trust with the communities they serve.
Jeri Curry is president and CEO of Enset, the only non-profit provider of the .ngo and .ong domains. Enset is aResource Alliance Transformative Partner, a group of visionary companies that share our values, and help fund the work that we do around the world and to bring our message — and events like the International Fundraising Congress (IFC) — to the organisations that need them.
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