Does your organization have a website? If so – when was the last time you took a serious look at it?
Not-for-profit performing arts organizations need to remember that their website are first and foremost marketing tools. That means design and content should take into account target audience and marketing goals. Your website should also be considered a development tool. But remember, funders – foundational, corporate and governmental – who will also check out your site, constitute a different type of audience. Best websites take this into account as well.
Websites of Performing Arts Organizations should, at the very least, include the following:
- An “About” page with mission statement, Board of Trustees, Staff, History, Past Awards, Related Links, rental information, etc. You may also want to include Job Opportunities here.
- “The Season” with information on what will be appearing on your stages and how to purchase tickets. You may also want to include information on Groups and Discounts, a seating chart, Box Office Hours, a season calendar and / or overview, wheelchair accessibility and other general information.
- Support Page with information on subscriptions, memberships, donations, sponsorships and planned giving. Make sure you offer a number of ways to contribute (online and off) and that the process is as simple as possible. You may also want to include information about Volunteering. If you have Special Events – that should also be included here.
- FIND US: ALWAYS include a map and directions – consider driving directions as well as public transportation. You may also want to suggest dining facilities in the neighborhood. This both promotes good will and gives you an opportunity for quid pro quo promotions.
- BUY NOW: Make sure you have CLEAR and CONCISE information on how to buy tickets. THE MORE CLICKS, THE GREATER CHANCE YOUR POTENTIAL CUSTOMER WILL GIVE UP.
- PRESS PAGE: This should include press releases as well as links or pdf copies of any articles that mention your organization. You should also include a downloadable media kit with leadership bios, quick schedule and your latest fact sheet. You may also want to include information on how to get in touch with your press office and instructions on how to obtain high resolution images.
- DEVELOPMENT: remember that, along with patrons and subscribers, potential donors will check out your website. So along with your “SUPPORT US” page (above), you may want to include Annual Reports and even you latest 990 or audit. (Or in lieu of that, links to the reports on Guidestar or the Foundation Center)
- Depending on your specific organization, you can also include pages devoted to: Educational programs, your Artists’ bios, information on play submissions, ushering, Volunteer Ambassador Programs, auditions, community outreach, etc.