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3 musts for successful integrated fundraising campaigns

2 min read
Sep 29, 2023


Integrated fundraising campaigns can boost results and digital engagement. But what does practical integration look like at different levels of campaign design? We explore this concept with Jen Newmeyer, digital fundraising director at PBS.

Jen and the team at PBS work together to provide programming that educates, informs, and entertains the American public while fostering a sense of community and citizenship. With two decades of experience in the field, Jen has witnessed the evolution of digital fundraising firsthand, and we were honored to have her in the Good Marketing Unplugged studio to dive deeper. 

Organizational Integration 

Integration starts even before campaign design. Many organizations inadvertently create a fractured view of their organization due to disjointed experiences across different channels or departments. Think of it like a multi-personality syndrome, where your audience receives mixed messages and experiences, leading to confusion or hesitation.

For example, if your direct mail campaign has one message, your email marketing team is sending a different message, and your on-air fundraising campaign has its own unique angle, it can leave your supporters feeling like they are engaging with multiple organizations. This lack of cohesion can erode trust and loyalty.

Working together internally to integrate your campaigns ensures the messaging, branding, and timing align across all channels. This can be challenging, but the effort is worth it for the impact it can have on your audience.

Actionable Steps:

  • Collaborate with the website team to create campaign-specific landing pages and integrate donation forms seamlessly.
  • Leverage the marketing department to run ads that align with your campaign's messaging and objectives.
  • Utilize the power of your social media to engage influencers or ambassadors to spread the word about your campaign.
  • Ensure consistent branding and messaging across all channels to provide a unified experience for donors.

Community Integration

As digital fundraisers and marketers, we are constantly competing for our community's attention. Whether they are completely unaware of our organization or have been loyal supporters for years, we are up against a myriad of distractions in today's fast-paced digital landscape.

So the task at hand is more than simply informing the community about your campaign, we should seek to stand out. Inform them in an interesting way that will involve them in the mission. We must ask ourselves 5 key questions: 

  1. How can you think outside of the box?
  2. What will draw audiences in?
  3. What makes this unique?
  4. How can we expand beyond the donation ask?
  5. How can we draw in more of the community?

Actionable Steps:

  • Consider incorporating live streaming, interactive contests, or unique engagement events into your campaigns.
  • Collaborate with local businesses, sponsors, or partners to add exciting experiential elements to your campaigns.
  • Encourage donors to take additional actions after making a donation, such as sharing their story, volunteering, downloading resources, or attending events.

Campaign Integration 

While you consider the best digital tools, platforms, channels and tactics to execute your campaign, remember the heart of it. Community engagement, storytelling and integrated messaging should be present regardless of the tactics and tools you use. 

Actionable Steps:

  • Your website and email marketing are crucial assets. Growing your email list and optimizing email content for higher engagement is a great place to start.
  • Ask yourself how your efforts are leading the audience to action at every step of the funnel. 
  • Create a robust annual calendar that maps out your campaigns for the fiscal year. This calendar should reflect the input and goals of all departments, ensuring a cohesive approach.

Listen to Jen’s full podcast episode to hear lessons learned from an early failed campaign to successful integrated campaigns to follow. 

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