We speak to lots of charities that have dipped a toe in the 'digital water' but are still struggling to integrate it fully. To many, digital is still an afterthought or silo that sits outside of regular activity. Here are a few quick tips for ways to start to break down the walls and embed digital throughout your non-profit.

Focus your digital reporting on outcomes

Unless you're a digital specialist or enthusiast, analytics can be dull and meaningless. To get attention and inspire interest across the organisation share metrics that matter. Instead of just sharing likes - share engagement and comments. Instead of traffic - sign-ups and donations. 

Recruit champions

Relying on only a few individuals to deliver your digital means the rest of the organisation can feel less ownership, including feeling unaccountable for thinking about digital when planning activities. Identifying champions within each team can genuinely help - start by asking those with a natural interest and speak with their manager about giving them the role of digital champion. Bring your champions together to share ideas and successes to keep the fire burning. Cakes help too!

Share stories and feedback

Digital channels provide very direct contact with supporters and people you've helped, something that not everyone in a charity has in their day job. The simple act of circulating comments from your digital channels can showcase the impact digital can have on achieving your mission. This also humanises the impact in a way that metrics and stats can never achieve.

Make HR an accomplice

It wasn't really very long ago that job descriptions used to all specify 'microsoft office skills required' to make sure new and existing staff members had the right skills. In the charity sector (and other sectors we're sure) we're still in a place where there's a need to be specific about the need for digital skills, or at least a positive attitude towards learning them. Getting your HR team on side and signed up to adding a short line on digital skills / attitude to all roles can go a long way.

Make it easy to fail

No-one likes to fail, it's embarrassing and makes you question your ability. If you're trying to persuade nervous team members to adopt digital you need to de-risk it. There's no doubt hundreds of ways to do this and they can probably be summed up in two themes;

  • break down activity so if any single part fails, the whole doesn't fail
  • create a 'sandbox' where people can play and build confidence.