Clarifying Organizational Goals 
Reworking a non-profit's language to clearly explain their purpose

 

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My Role

Copywriter

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Duration

4 weeks 

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Metrics

web traffic and volunteer sign ups

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Tools

SEM Rush Google Suite

Outcomes

New web copy

Process

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Empathy

First client meeting,

Understanding the problem

Research

Comparative, 

Competitive, 

SEO keywords

1st Draft

Branding voice guidelines, 

1st draft meeting with client

Refine/2nd Draft

Redraft the guidelines and copy

Final tweaks and handoff

Final client meeting (about copy) and hand off to web developer

 

The Problem

Ubuntu Community Catalyst (UCC) copy was ambiguous around key concepts such as

  • Who we are 

  • What we do

  • Mission 

  • Vision 

  • Why you should choose us 

  • Projects

The Goals

1) To provide clearer answers for these questions and concepts while balancing the empowering language the organization wanted to retain in the redesign. 

2) To funnel the majority of users towards the new volunteer sign-up form. 

 
 
 

The Client

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For this opportunity, I worked with Ubuntu Community Catalyst (UCC), in particular Mary Wilson. UCC is on a mission to spark community engagement and neighborhood revitalization in the Atlanta area.

To accomplish this, UCC is building a platform to attract and train community stakeholders with the goal dismantle these issues. 

 

 

The Audience

This prota-persona was formed in two ways;

  1. Discussions with the client about their volunteers over the last year. This is where the majority of demographic information came from and where I started to understand more about motivations. 

  2. Watching video recordings of volunteers in a setting where they collectively worked together to prioritize resources and efforts (specifically community learning labs and community meetings) 

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  • Female 

  • African American 

  • Most likely a mother 

  • Mid 20s to early 40s

  • Live in the outer Atlanta area, most likely in South Fulton

Frustrations

  • Finding resources and opportunities to tackle systemic issues in their area

  • Community development

  • Housing insecurity

  • Mental health

  • Childhood development

Goals

  • Finding an organization that provides both long and short term opportunities to better the community

  • Never feeling like they are being given "busy work" volunteering 

  • Being listened to as a voice from the community 

  • Opportunities to collaborate

 

Research

Comparative

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  • Etsy

  • Shopify 

  • Mail Chimp

Competitive

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  • Community Bucket

  • Civic Atlanta

  • GeorgiaCCA

  • Atlanta Habitat

SEO

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Top Keywords​

  • community development

  • community building 

  • resilience

The research that was the most fruitful was competitive, especially Community Bucket and GeorgiaCCA. Both of these sites showed concise language that still effectively captured the organization's voice. 

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Example: Community bucket clearly outlines that they make their experience fun, easy and impactful. 

Example: UCC uses many words and fails to provide clear, unambiguous examples about why they are unique. 

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Voice Principles V.01

Compassion

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Collaboration

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Community 

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One of the most critical challenges with the language was making sure that the copy never came off as superior. Weaving themes of empowerment and collaboration is a preventative measure to make sure there is little to no chance of this misconception. 

 

Redrafting/V.02

After another meeting with the client for collaboration and refinement, another pillar for the language emerged.​

Resilience

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Having a more defined, dimensional, voice gave me more to work with SEO keywords

U.C.C. Original Vision Statement

 

In its effort to be contained in one sentence, it is a long-winded mission statement. It fails to provide the audience with the organization's long-term goals. 

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My Revised Vision Statement

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The first sentence is for any reader, the second sentence is specifically for the audience's frustration and the third is touches on one of the main tenants of the organization. 

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Next Steps

After the hand of to the web developer, a google analytics account needs to be set up to track;

  • Volunteer conversions 

  • Donations 

  • Bounce Rate 

  • Time on the site

  • Effectiveness of chosen keywords

Since there was no analytical tracking established there is no definitive baseline to compare it to.  

 

The "Nice-To-Haves" That Didn't Happen

  1. Deeper conversations about future writing strategies never happened during this time. My concern is a continued habit of superfluous writing that fails to inform the audience in other mediums or platforms. Under different circumstances, I would have liked to pass on a basic language guideline to the organization.  

  2. Having a content strategy that integrated the design of the volunteer form as well would've been desirable nice-to-have. 

  3. A persona that was shaped by user interviews. As mentioned above, the persona process was developed by an analysis of the services sought and interviews with the founder of the organization. 

 
 

Reflections

The UX of Ubuntu Community Catalyst demonstrated the importance of addressing the user's intent in the copy. Once that was addressed, the uplifting tone from the original could be reapplied. With defined language guidelines, the user's frustrations can be anticipated, not exacerbated with unclear text.