You know that making a new website for your nonprofit is a great idea. How about everyone else? When it comes to convincing the higher-ups at your organization, it’s a good idea to put some time into preparing a website pitch that makes your case in a compelling and approachable way.
In this post, you’ll find practical tips for your presentation, including an example of a slide deck that can be adapted to your needs and nonprofit’s style. Even if you don’t have the opportunity to make a presentation, you can mimic this approach to put together an internal creative brief for your organization’s leadership or to help guide a one-on-one conversation.
How to Outline the Pitch
Before you start fleshing out a pitch presentation, you’ll want to have some background research ready and consider the questions you’re likely to get from your higher-ups. You don’t need to present a ton of information, which would be overwhelming, but you’ll feel better if you have some compelling facts and key messages at the ready.
Start with a positive big picture
No need for doom and gloom. Kick off your presentation with an overview of some of your nonprofit’s larger goals, the progress you’ve made and the challenges that you’re working to overcome.
Show the opportunity
It’s possible to acknowledge the limitations of your current site or online presence without harping too much on all the things that are going wrong. Share some perspective on what successful nonprofits are doing and give examples from your area of the nonprofit sector. Focus on what their websites do in addition to what they look like.
Offer reasons and evidence
Now that you’ve set the stage, weave in some information about the performance of your existing website. (Depending on your audience, your numbers might need a little interpretation, too.) For each issue that you raise, explain the benefit of fixing it—both to the organization and to your website visitors.
If needed, tell the group about the diversity of your target audiences. It reinforces that you want your site to be usable for a wide range of people while reminding decision makers that their personal preferences are only one piece of the puzzle.
Describe expected outcomes
At this point in your website pitch, it’s time to show what success looks like. Throw on that marketing hat and tell a story. For example, share some feedback from a constituent and how a new website would address their frustrations. Or describe a hypothetical scenario, like how improving your online donation process could boost fundraising efforts. In addition to showing that the value of a new website will outweigh the cost, communicate that there’s also a cost to inaction.
Set the right expectations
Time to wrap things up with details about moving ahead with a new website. Depending on how much research you’ve done on choosing a web design company, you might have some initial estimates on the cost and timeline. Here’s how our website process works if you need an example.
Otherwise, outline your suggested next steps based on what you know about how your organization makes decisions. And until you have an estimated price tag, it’s never a bad idea to emphasize that a website is an ongoing investment rather than a one-time cost.
Example Website Pitch Presentation
If you’re wondering what your presentation should look like, we created a website pitch example for a fictional nonprofit that you’re welcome to use for inspiration. Flip through the slides below and download the presentation for safekeeping in a variety of editable formats like Microsoft PowerPoint. Adapt it however you need!
Swipe Our Presentation Slides
You don't have to start from scratch! We’ll happily send you a copy of our website pitch presentation so that you can make it your own or simply use it for ideas.
Ways to Give Your Pitch
You might not have an opportunity to make an in-person plea for a new website, but that doesn’t mean that you’re out of options. As an alternative, slideshow software like PowerPoint or Keynote allows you to record a voiceover for your slide deck that can then be exported and sent to decision makers as a video. Or you might have a chance to sit down with your boss to work through the slides in a more casual conversation that’s supported by data and visuals.
Whatever option you have, preparing ahead of time should help you feel more relaxed.
Advice From Around the Web
Get an extra boost of confidence to make your case with advice from other experts who’ve been in your shoes. Here are some additional tips you can use when creating and presenting your website pitch:
“A website redesign shouldn’t just address what’s broken, but what can be improved. Explain to your boss how improving the design and features of your website can help the business in the future.” – Kris LaGreca
“Do not, repeat, do not, have an argument on ‘the right way’ to do something. You will lose. Remember: You’re a marketer. Use all those marketing skills on your own colleagues! This is about persuasion, not proving you are right.” – Katya Andresen
“Show your manager the real business value of new marketing strategies and projects. And remember: Go in with an understanding of her perspective. She can’t necessarily unlearn the things that have worked in the past, so take an approach that is strong, yet empathetic.” – John Bonini
“Be conscious of presenting all of the thorough research in a way that doesn’t just skip to the ending. Think like a lawyer, laying out your case (relying on how each solution impacts your company’s bottom line), ultimately leading to your choice as the most logical solution.” – Kirsten Lyons
“Emphasizing the positive can give your audience a sense of control over the situation and inspire optimism and buy-in.” – Susan J. Ashford and James R. Detert
Good luck with your pitch! We know it can be stressful to make the case for a new website, especially if your organization isn’t known for making investments in marketing and technology. Take the time to consider your audience, prepare some background information, and tell a story of what’s possible when your online presence is as powerful as your mission.
What lingering questions or concerns do you have about asking for a new website? If you’ve been in this position before, what made your website pitch successful? Let’s talk in the comments.