This post is provided courtesy of Jen Frazier, President and Founder of Firefly Partners.
Well, just like that, here we are in 2022. While many of us are happy to have both 2020 and 2021 in the rearview mirror, what we make of 2022 is up to all of us.
There are so many places that need our increasingly urgent attention – climate change, social justice, fighting systemic racism, access to affordable healthcare, maintaining our barest modicum of reproductive rights, and on and on. We want to ensure that every single person who wants to join in the efforts to make the world a more equitable place can exercise that desire with as little hindrance as possible.
What does that mean for our friends at Firefly?
For Firefly, it means doubling down on their promise to create inclusive digital experiences with clients that are as accessible, navigable, and usable for as many folks as possible.
So, let’s dig a bit deeper into those concepts as vagueness doesn’t help, and clarity and specificity are what it’s all about.
Inclusive Digital Marketing means that all the content generated across any and all of your digital channels should be fully accessible, welcoming to all, and creating an enjoyable experience for any user that interacts with it.
So, with regards to your website, it should have thoughtful and intentional architecture. This list should include opportunities for high contrast colors for those who are visually impaired, accessibility-minded back-end code so folks can easily navigate using a keyboard, screen readers, or other assistive technologies. And last but certainly not least, you should use inclusive and diverse imagery throughout your website.
An Inclusive Approach to Layout, Design, and Build
When writing copy, you should be using language that speaks to at least an 8th-grade reading level and always practice caution when including insider jargon that is hard to understand. Flashing video or imagery that cannot be easily turned off or paused should also be avoided.
When creating forms, don’t program them to time out or cause a lot of frustrating data re-entry and always use descriptive, contextual, and inclusive alt-text language for all images on the site. These are but a few ideas of how an inclusive approach could impact your website’s layout, design, and build.
It Doesn’t Stop at Your Website
As we all know, your website is just one part of your digital landscape. There’s no argument that it is an essential element in that landscape and should be given a disproportionate amount of time and energy to ensure it is welcoming to all. However, the work doesn’t stop there; it is just one of the many elements you need to re-examine and re-work as you strive to create a digital experience that works seamlessly for all.
It is a new year, and with it comes the opportunity to reflect on the change you want to create in the world. And if we have learned anything in the last two years of such incredible upheaval and change, it is that those of us striving for a more equitable world cannot afford to leave anyone behind – even if unintentionally.
Creating a fully accessible digital experience for all your supporters should be top of mind for you for many reasons. Don’t turn away that potential advocate, donor, or volunteer; instead, make it an excellent experience for them. Create a real sense of belonging for every person who shows up. Let folks know they are welcome and appreciated, and they will become your loyal advocates and supporters for years to come.
Watch Firefly’s full presentation on digital accessibility in our most recent ENCC-X Conference. Interested in creating a fully accessible digital experience for your supporters? Start a conversation with Firefly today!