Potomac Conservancy seeks to hire a consultant for online fundraising strategy (email, social) and call to-action content development for the end-of-year fundraising campaign.


  1. The Contractor will create a strategic framework with messaging for fundraising for the end of year season from existing messaging as well as recommending new message and imagery opportunities. The strategic and compelling message framework will direct our public fundraising and supportive communications across multiple digital platforms in October – December 2023.
  2. The Contractor will draft email, donation form, and social media content as the lead author to initiate implementation of the strategy. The near-ready drafts will go through revision by the contractor in consultation with staff. The Conservancy staff expects to handle final content editing, design, programming, graphics, and delivery.

Goods and Services Requested:

1: STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK for End of Year Fundraising

Timeline: September/ October 2023.


  1. Develop a brand-consistent, compelling strategy and message framing with effective calls to action
    for fundraising on online platforms in the end of year fundraising period of November – December
    2023, increasing fundraising results over 2022 results through conversion of friends to members,
    and with increased membership giving.
  2. Craft a strategic framework with recommended calls-to-action, message content, priority tactics,
    and online engagement, and recommend investments for paid advertising.


  1. Review PC’s annual message framework, near-term priorities, brand positioning.
  2. Brainstorm discussion with Potomac Conservancy fundraising and communications staff.
  3. Initial draft strategy framework for end of year fundraising and online engagements.
  4. Meeting/discussion to refine strategy framework.
  5. Final strategy framework including calls-to-action, message content, recommendation on imagery,
    priority tactics, and online engagement, and recommend investments for paid advertising.

2: DRAFT CONTENT for End of Year Fundraising

Timeline: October/ November/ December 2023.


  1. A fully drafted slate of emails including text content, graphics and image recommendations, and
    segmentation recommendations for the Potomac Conservancy end of year fundraising campaign.
  2. Recommendations for social media posts and promotion to support the fundraising campaign.


  1. Final drafts of 10 – 12 core email messages and calls to action, with versions for different
    recommended sub audiences, ready for Potomac Conservancy staff to complete, design, program,
    and send. This set is to include a full Giving Tuesday campaign for November 29, 2023.
  2. Recommended application of images and graphics, support for staff in selecting appropriate images
    and graphics from among Potomac Conservancy’s stock for fundraising emails.
  3. Recommended list structure for the above, donation form content and images for the above.
  4. Recommended content for social media posts to support the fundraising campaign as well as paid
    advertising and/or post promotion.
  5. Membership-building tool recommendations including ads, geofencing, email append, list
    purchase, and others are welcomed but not required within this group of deliverables (we have a
    limited budget this year).
  6. Project check-ins and collaboration with PC on potential content adjustments based on learnings
    from Giving Tuesday and email performance.


Timeline: January 2023


  1. Measure efficacy of year-end campaign and return on investment based on data provided by PC
  2. Document lessons learned that we can build on in the future and top-level guidance for future
    digital solicitation campaigns in a memo reflecting on the campaign


  1. Assessment of project analytics including fundraising statistics and email and social performance
  2. Assessment that empowers PC to apply knowledge gained to improving future digital fundraising

Respond to this RFP by August 17, 2023 

Please describe:

  1. Proposed approach and process for addressing the RFP’s goals for 1. Strategic Framework; and 2.
    Draft Content.
  2. A general calendar of proposed meetings and completed deliverables.
  3. Proposed cost inclusive of all anticipated expenses, hours and rates.
  4. Name and full contact information for a single point of contact, and names of professionals
    proposed for carrying out the work, if different from the point of contact.
  5. Examples of relevant past work products (2-3), brief description of goals and outcomes. Note: we
    may ask for references to discuss the consultant’s past work.

Submitting proposal:

Proposal should be emailed to Mary Vasse, VP of Development at vasse@potomac.org by August 17,
2023. Questions can be directed to both:

Mary Vasse, VP of Development at vasse@potomac.org, 301-608-1188 ext207
Melissa Diemand, VP of Communications at diemand@potomac.org, 301-608-1188 ext214

Budget range:

PC has a budget of $10,000 – $12,000 reserved for this work. Please respond to fit this level of investment.

Potomac Conservancy would expect to provide the following materials for review and assessment for
development of a refined scope of work:

  1. Past years’ messaging, engagement strategies, and metrics.
  2. The Potomac Conservancy strategic plan, outlining program achievements and conservation needs.
    Specific attention will be paid to the near-term needs and actions that can supply the urgency
    needed in a successful fundraising campaign.
  3. Potomac Conservancy’s editorial calendar as both a historical document for assessing past activities
    and for structuring recommended future strategies in the October – December 2023 period.

About Potomac Conservancy

Potomac Conservancy, www.potomac.org, (PC) is the Washington, DC region’s leading clean water advocate, fighting to keep pollution out of the Potomac and local streams. Founded in 1993, we are a member-supported nonprofit organization working to protect the Potomac River and ensure clean water for all in our Washington, DC region community. We have over 30,000 friends and supporters and an online audience of over 15,000 social followers. Our work benefits the 6.1 million people who live and work in the Potomac Basin, and 5 million who rely on the Potomac River for the water they drink.

We have a five-year strategy underway, launched in 2023, and grounded in science-based approaches to the challenges faced by the Potomac River, including polluted urban run-off, deforestation, development that harms waterways, and the local impacts of the climate crisis. We are now implementing an expansion and acceleration of Potomac Conservancy’s proven strategies to protect the region’s waterways with common-sense, nature-based solutions. Together with our community-led movement for clean water we are:

  • Restoring land to improve water quality where pollution can be reversed, with community action,
    pushing local jurisdictions to enact strong clean water laws and policies, and make investments.
  • Protecting land and water where tributaries to the Potomac are in fair to high quality be under
    immediate threat of deterioration, by empowering landowners to protect their land and streams to
    reduce and prevent upstream pollution.
  • Communicating with our community on important water issues and actions.
  • Building collaborative approaches to create new sources of conservation funding for the region’s
    organizations and agencies to advance conservation success throughout the Potomac River