Often in nonprofit and advocacy work come across people who are interested in the cause, but when it comes time to take action – they disappear. In his article published to Philanthropy New Digest, Derrick Feldmann gives some tips on how to turn interest into action.
1. Follow initial interest with personal outreach. After someone shows interest in your cause, be sure to reach out to that person with an opportunity that allows them to do something more on behalf of the cause.
2. Let people tell you why they care. When you first contact a person after they have expressed interest in your cause, give them a chance to tell you why they care about the cause. You will learn what the cause mean to them, and whether they are interested in doing more. This will allow you to find the best position for this person to get involved.
3. Help them share their interest with others. Once someone has expressed an interest in your cause and told you why they care, create an opportunity for to share with others about why they care. This can be done simply using social media, but can also include things like a statement of support (with an option to sign), a photo wall, and/or a guestbook.
4. Invite them to take action. Invite them to do something for a person who is a beneficiary of your cause like donating their time, skills, or finances. This will expand their motivation beyond just a personal interest.
5. Ask them to reach out to others. If you succeed in getting someone to give time or money to your cause, your next step should be to ask them to reach out to someone they knows on your behalf. This will help reinforce their own belief in the cause and give them confidence to act as a champion for your organization.
Following these five steps will help your organization move potential supporters from interest to action.