Mon, October 22 2007
Filed under: Marketing essentials •
1. They remind you: audience, audience, audience. Know your audience. Speak to your audience. Forget your audience at your own peril.
2. They show that your audience talks back. We’re in an age of unprecedented consumer control, and your audience will not sit quietly and obey your message. Your audience expects to have a conversation with you.
3. The 3iYing crew, who work as consultants, are on-target about what works: speaking to an audience’s values and being credible and authentic. Cheesy, disingenuous messages that miss the mark will get - and deserve - the flip.
Check it out:
Fri, October 19 2007
Filed under: Marketing essentials •
One of the great things about online advocacy is you can move someone emotionally and then give them an immediate way to act upon that emotion. This makes conversion quite easy. Always keep this concept front and center in your mind, with every communication you make online. You always want to:
1. Tell a great story that makes your case - and creates the impulse to give
2. Give people a way to act that’s as simple as a few clicks of the mouse
Speaking of clicks, below is a great video example of tapping into emotions, then telling people what to do with them with a big emphasis on how easy it is to make a difference. I found it via Creativity Online.
Now imagine having the donate button right next to this video on YouTube for Nonprofits, where it’s not yet placed. That would be even better.
Fri, October 19 2007
Filed under: Fundraising essentials •
In July, Network for Good launched Nonprofit 911, a free training program for the overwhelmed nonprofit. Every 2-4 weeks, we cover a new topic related to nonprofit marketing and online fundraising.
What can you learn about nonprofit marketing in 60 minutes? Find out, during our next Nonprofit 911 free training series:
October 23, 2007 from 1-2pm (eastern)
How to Tell Your Story: Tips for Better Storytelling, Fundraising Success & Media Glory
Speakers: Katya Andresen & Macon Morehouse
October 30, 2007 from 1-2pm (eastern)
Event 101 for Fundraisers: Putting Your Mission Into Action!
Speaker: Jeff Shuck, Event 360
Can’t attend? Download an audio transcript from www.Fundraising123.org.
Tue, October 16 2007
Filed under: Websites and web usability •
Katya’s note: Today we have an absolutely inspirational Guest Post from my buddy Mark Rovner of Sea Change Strategies. Some of you may remember him from the recent Network for Good teleconference bearing the unofficial title, “Your Website Sucks - Fix It For Free.” You can hear that teleconference - “Website 101” or read the transcript here.
By Mark Rovner
You learn a lot from Buddhism. And while — to the eternal relief of our clients — I am not one to go around spouting bits of Buddhist dogma, my whole approach to communications strategy is profoundly affected by the Buddhadharma.
This week, His Holiness the Dalai Lama will receive the Congressional Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian honor the U.S. gives. It is long overdue, delayed by decades of placating China. Now that we are entering the “WTF were we thinking” phase of our China relationship, Tibet’s exiled ruler — arguably the world’s most famous refugee, can get his due.
So it’s a good week to step back and offer some of the ways that Buddhist teachings can influence modern communications strategy:
+ The whole point of everything is not to gain but to lose. Enlightenment comes when you lose your distraction, your pre-conceptions, and your obscurations. We’re already brilliant. Your organization is already brilliant. We just have to let it out. There’s a deeper level to that lose not gain bit, but we’ll save that for later.
+ When you strip away clutter, brilliance ensues. My teacher frequently inveighs against what he believes to be one of the great scourges of Western society: too much thinking. When you strip away all the ifs, ands, and buts of who your organization is and what it’s all about, your true brand, in its naked accessible simplicity, can shine out.
+ Clarity and openness are more important than gimmicks or cleverness. Nuff said.
+ How you are is more important than what you say. It’s sort of ironic that we spend so much time fussing over “messaging” when the 3,000 other ways we reveal ourselves speak so much louder than the words we choose. Look at Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. Obama’s supporters are as in love with how he is as they are his policy positions. Hillary’s lead in the polls notwithstanding, people find it difficult to feel connected to her. The lessons are old, but their contemporary value is obvious.
Anyway, don’t take my word for it. Check out this website. Listen to the Dalai Lama’s live webcast. You have nothing to lose but confusion.
Fri, October 12 2007
Filed under: Cause-related marketing •
I’ve been asked by fellow bloggers at the Giving Carnival to answer the question, “Is relationship everything in philanthropy?” It will come as NO surprise that my answer is yes - I’m always ranting about treating individual donors like an audience not ATMs. So I’m going to take on a fresher angle today—striving for a relationship with your corporate partners or potential corporate partners. Because they don’t like being ATMs either.
Put yourself in their shoes for a moment.
There are about 1.5 million nonprofits, and most are hitting up you - the businessperson—for money. That’s a lot of competition.
And that’s the bad news.
The good news is, most nonprofits do a lousy job approaching businesspeople. It’s easy to stand out by doing better. Simply stop treating corporate folks as sources of money and start treating them as an audience.
Here are ten steps to doing that:
1. Find your match. Think of yourself as searching for a relationship (not a fat check) with a company. Any relationship needs compatibility to work. Ask yourself, who wins when I win? What corporations are natually aligned with my audience and my mission? You want to partner around mutual benefits or you won’t be partnering at all.
2. Find out the business AND philanthrophic agendas. You need to do some homework BEFORE you pick up the phone or fire off an email all about your organization. What are this company’s business priorities? Philanthrophic goals (because they likely already have some)? How can you align with those?
3. Find an entre. Find a board member or even LinkedIn connection who can introduce you so you’re not cold calling. I always respond to people who come recommended by someone I know, and businesspeople do, too.
4. Try to get to the businesspeople rather than the community service people. They have more power and can get things done faster. You’ll usually fare better if you’re coming in as a partner who can drive a brand or business initiative.
5. Start your sentences in the right way. Instead of: “This is what we do,” say “This is what we can do for you.”
6. Sell the benefits to them along with the social impact. Instead of: “We need x,” say “We understand you need x, and we can help make that happen.” Don’t only say: “This is who will benefit,” ADD, “AND this is how this benefits your image, bottom line, etc…”
7. Go into partnerships - like relationships - with open eyes. No partnership is perfect. Look for more positives than negatives in regard to fit and benefits and devise a plan for compensating for weaknesses within the alliance.
8. Put work into it. Inevitably, the benefits that partners receive will change, and one partner may perceive diminishing value. Create new benefits if commitment is flagging on one side.
9. Communicate constantly. Keep your partner energized by regularing sending them updates, examples of good press, positive reactions from people, stories about impact, etc.
10. Know when to call it quits. Knowing when to stop a partnership is as important as knowing when to start one. Declare success and move on when a goal has been achieved, or set a new, finite goal together. Better a clean finish than death by disintegration.