I don’t usually do this, but today I’m incorporating the full text of a recent blog by Seth Godin. It’s not about philanthropy or fundraising. Or, is it? He says it’s about ‘goodwill,’ or the lack thereof. What it costs you to lose it. I say – you really should read what he says and…Details
Today we’re going to think outside the box.
I’m going to suggest your nonprofit consider creating an app.
Yes, one of those things people buy at the app store.
Lest you think I’m crazy, this is an idea I’ve been noodling around for some time now.
And I think its time may finally have come!
Okay, maybe not 100%.
But there’s something to be said for the mobile, app-based experience.
Not just for retail giants, but for social benefit causes too.
The idea began to glimmer for meDetails
Is your nonprofit using Instagram yet? Pinterest?
I’m going to suggest you give it some serious consideration.
We live in the age of information overload. A wealth of information creates a scarcity of attention and thus a need to efficiently allocate attention.
Visual to the rescue!
Visual is a huge trend in marketing, using the power of digital to communicate your message and stay within the diminishing attention span of today’s online readers –8 seconds (one second less than the attention span of a goldfish).
If human minds are adapting to information overload this way (to multitask, prioritize, and consume quickly and efficiently), it makes sense for your nonprofit to adapt as well.
Otherwise, you’ll work really hard to put messages out there – that no one will read.
Want to stop working just hard and start working smart?Details
They’re meant for each other. Yet it may take a while to bring them together.
Here’s what I mean:
Peanut butter was first introduced at the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair. It didn’t get mixed with jelly until 1901, when the first PB&J sandwich recipe appeared in the Boston Cooking School Magazine of Culinary Science and Domestic Economics. It was served in upscale tea rooms, and was exclusive food. Until the world changed.
The 1930 Depression made peanut butter, a low-cost, high-protein source of energy, a star. But not the combo sandwich. Not yet.
Peanut butter and jelly were on U.S. Military ration menus. Soldiers added jelly to the peanut spread to sweeten the sandwich and make it more palatable. When soldiers came home from the war, peanut butter and jelly sales soared.
Suddenly this marriage became the norm. Why separate them? After all, they went together like… PB&J!
We never looked back.
How is Nonprofit Marketing and Fundraising Integration like the Marriage of PB&J?
They didn’t start out married, but they belong together.
Here’s what I mean:Details
This is not the first time I’ve channeled Bob Dylan, calling for a change in the way fundraising and marketing is practiced in the social benefit sector. Because the times truly are a changin’…
Your sons and your daughters are beyond your command, your old road is rapidly agin’…
THEN: When I grew up in fundraising I had a shoe box as my database. I wrote grant proposals on yellow legal pads. When we got our first FAX machine I complained that now folks expected us to mail and FAX them (so double the work). When email came on the scene I complained that now folks wanted us to mail and FAX and email (so triple the work). But it was still the same old road of outbound marketing. At least I understood what it was all about.
NOW: We’re on a new road entirely. Because folks are coming to us. They’re telling us what they want. They’re defining our nonprofit brand. And they’re doing so in real time via a multitude of online channels and using a multitude of Web-connected devices.Details
What makes us think a perfect stranger, who’s never given to our organization before, will choose to do so? It’s highly counter intuitive.
Does your nonprofit have an email newsletter?
I’d rather see you rock a blog, but let’s talk a bit about your newsletter. Since you already have one, you may as well make it better.
Otherwise, what’s the point?
[BTW: If you don’t have an e-newsletter, go read the article above about creating and rocking a blog. Also read this. A blog can serve the purpose of an e-newsletter, and do so in a more donor-centric, user-friendly fashion. IMHO]
Okay. Back to improving your newsletter.
The real point of a newsletter is to stay top of mind with your supporters.
Because you want to keep them, of course!
Just like with any relationship, if the only time someone hears from you is when you want something from them, they’re not likely to stick around.