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How to get millennials involved in your NFP

3 min read

There is a lot of information out there on millennials. Information that tells us who they are, what they do, where they go, what their values are, and what motivates them. Some people say they are entitled and lazy, while others describe them as creative and confident. But with a population of approximately 2 billion people globally, one thing is for sure – this generation of cultural drivers is the largest in human history, and with their passion for philanthropy and increased spending power and social influence, they provide significant opportunities for Not-For-Profits.

But with their hyper-connected nature and tendency to multitask, millennials are a tough bunch to engage with. Luckily for you, we’ve listed four ways you can get the millennial generation involved in your Not-For-Profit.

  1. Highlight the cause. Millennials are eager to be taken seriously as future donors, volunteers and leaders for causes they care about, and are mostly motivated by their passion for a cause. Therefore, when marketing your Not-For-Profit, it pays to concentrate on your mission, rather than the organisation itself. One way to do this is by sharing stories of the difference your organisation has made to the lives of those it works with, and showing millennials how their support can help make an even greater difference.
  1. Get social. Millennials have grown up with the Internet, so it’s no secret that they rely on social media as a means of communication and news. In fact, 75% of all millennials are reported to having at least one social media account. Make the most of this by actively engaging on social media platforms, but remember to choose only those that are used by your target audience and that can help you communicate your cause. For example, Twitter can be a much better fit than overcrowded and entertainment-driven Facebook, so if it suits your message, use that instead. Share inspiring, fascinating and engaging content that people can pass on to their own friends. Millennials rely on word-of-mouth communication, so once you’ve made a positive impression on one of them, they’ll be more likely to spread the word across their network.
  1. Invest in your website. Millennials are inherently skeptical, and are quick to point out fakes and phonies. A well designed and informative website will help you establish authenticity and transparency, making them more likely to support your cause. Ensure your website explains who you are, what you’re doing, who you work with and how they can help. FAQ pages are a great way to establish trust, allowing you to share your story, recount your organisation’s values and ethics and highlight your achievements.
  1. Create mutually rewarding experiences. Millennials are constantly seeking new ways to make a difference to the causes they care for. For many, the days of monetary donations are gone — instead, millennials are getting more hands on, participating in events such as half marathons and overnight walks that allow them both to volunteer themselves and raise money to support their endeavours. This shift from monetary donations to time donations is important for Not-For-Profits to consider. Rather than asking millennials to donate money right off the bat, Not-For-Profits can instead invite them to participate in a hands-on activity or event which allows them to make a direct contribution to the organisation’s cause. A great example of this (albeit one from a for-profit company) is the OPTUS Rock Corps initiative, which saw thousands of millennials donate their time to community volunteer projects ran by Not-For-Profit organisations, in return for a free concert ticket.

The key for Not-For-Profits is to remember that millennials are not just supporting them because they believe in the cause (even though they do), they are not just participating because their friends are doing it (even though they are), they are participating to make a memory. For millennials, doing good has become a social activity, combined with a dose of peer affirmation delivered by high-tech means.





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