My previous blog was about Valentine’s Day. And I asked you what you were planning for that day of love and appreciation. I am curious to learn what it was you did of course! And I am also curious to know what other international days you use in your work? Do you have a plan or a strategy how you can make good use of (inter)national days?
Your target group knows the issue and the day…
It is possible that your target group is aware of the issue and of the day but is not aware that you are part of that family, too. Linking to an (inter)national day then helps you to clarify with these target groups that you care about the issue, just like they do. These may be people that are happy to find a local organization that works on an issue they care about. Maybe they were even looking precisely for something like that.
… or they don’t
The second option is that the target group knows you but is not aware that the issue you work on is one of national or even international interest. Linking to an (inter)national day may raise the standing of your organization and its work in the eyes of this group. These may be people who might be happy to support a local group that works on something of bigger importance.
If you want to work with the concept of an (inter)national day on a topic that aligns with your mission and work, there are three different objectives you can pursue:
- Appreciate your target group.
- Inform and educate your target group.
- Mobilize your target group and call them to action.
Examples – appreciation
For Valentine’s Day you can send appreciation to your supporters and team. On International Women’s Day you can put powerful women in your target group or team in the spotlight. On the International Day of Volunteering, you can show your gratitude to your volunteers, and so on. Appreciation can increase the quality of the bond between you and the person you address with this message.
Examples – education
On International Water Day you can share information about drinking water quality or water pollution of natural waters in your community. For World Poetry Day you can make a list of local poets as part of a leaflet on the importance of poetry. Information and education can bring in people who may not be in your ‘world’ yet. They may start following you to learn more about your work and activities.
Examples – call to action
For World Poetry Day you can invite your target group to submit poems for a contest. For the International Day of Volunteering you can ask people to come and help you renovate your class room. If someone follows your call to action, this can intensify relations between you and them. They may want to become a regular supporter or volunteer.
Where to find these days?
These are resources I like as inspiration about the great many national and international days we have on our planet:
Likely you will be able to find more inspiration if you search specifically also for national days in your country.
My top tips for you:
- Keep it simple and choose the best days for your organization.
- Define the target group very precisely.
- Plan well ahead to have ample time for preparations, especially if you want to send out messages of information and education or a call to action.
- Do not mix messages. Do not send a call to action to people you are appreciating. You undermine the value of your appreciation if it seems linked to a request to do something.
Want to know more and ask questions?
If you want to discuss this more – jump into the Facebook group and get input from a wide range of peers and from myself!
Here is how you can join my free Facebook group
You can join my free Facebook group how to become a professional and resilient nonprofit with Suzanne Bakker here. In this group we will create a safe space for open exchange and discussion on potentially sensitive topics like boards, nonprofit management, fundraising, etc.