For over a quarter of a century, National Endowment for Financial Education (NEFE) has been committed to forward-thinking financial education. Today NEFE is the leading private foundation dedicated to inspiring empowered financial decision-making for individuals and families through every stage of life. On Your Own is NEFE’s program to empower millennials and those who may not have gone to college and are “on their own” financially for the first time by sharing relevant financial information.
In 2015, we were enlisted to provide strategic services to help On Your Own become more resonant, connective and easier to create and curate. Plus, “Our content is snowballing out of control,” said NEFE. The goal: Engaging millennials to replace lack of uptake and disinterest, and organize content to make it more manageable for the internal marketing team.
Our initial approach was to clarify On Your Own’s brand and ensure that the what, why and how they were working synched with their target audience. Working in partnership with NEFE, we developed a brand book that strengthened internal understanding of who On Your Own was as a brand and would guide how they moved forward. Then we outlined a number of possible trajectories for how to dialogue with millennials rather than preach to them.
The second part of our work was to audit and evaluate the current content architecture and investigate how the current website, the main point of contact, was working—or not—to support the brand message. Like many organizations, the amount of personnel hours available for the creation and curation of content was less than what the current content needed, causing workflow challenges.
The final stage involved crafting a dynamic and customizable digital experience by grouping the content into three categories—areas that NEFE and Dovetail identified as primary motivators—for engaging millennials visiting the site. With this structure, it was easy to review existing content and retool it to have more dynamic entry points, be more digestible, be more sharable via social means and more consumable by a demographic of savvy, skeptical, scanners. NEFF’s long-standing web development team is currently executing the final website.