first_imgWant to surprise your audience into paying attention? Here is a great example.Suppose you’re trying to sell milk in a way that is cooler than those mustaches, which are getting old. How about irony? How about shades of Spinal Tap and a retro young ironic hip cool vibe?How about… putting milk inside a guitar? In the hands of a musical phenom by the name of White Gold?Talk about zigging instead of zagging… You’ve got to love this Got Milk? campaign for California.last_img

Posted in pzkvckff

first_imgOn my way to my daughter’s school, every morning, I pass a house that has a creche in its front yard. It’s been there since early December. Baby Jesus has been lingering there for the entire winter and Spring, and at this rate he may be slumbering into the summer. He is covered with pollen these days.Every morning, my daughter takes note of his long, post-seasonal stay in the manger.“It’s STILL there!” she notes.Then she asks why.You could attribute all kinds of interesting reasons for this never-ending nativity scene. Maybe it’s a family that practices a particular kind of christianity. Maybe they like the way the creche looks amid the Spring flowers and overgrown grass. Maybe they have the Christmas spirit all year long.Or maybe they are just lazy. Maybe they still have their tree up inside too, because they haven’t summoned the energy to pack it up either. My fave marketer, Seth Godin, says you can be sure of two things about all people: they are lazy, and they are in a hurry.We marketers like to spend a lot of time analyzing why people do some things or don’t do some things. We think of religion, attitudes, mindsets. But we should also be thinking of lazy. And in a hurry. Maybe we’re just making it too darn hard for people to take action.Maybe if taking action was really easy, more people would do it.Never underestimate the importance of ease and convenience. Try vastly simplifying your call to action and the level of effort it requires. See what happens. You might get Christmas in April.last_img read more

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first_imgMy favorite pink paper, the Financial Times, had an editorial this weekend by v3’s Robert Egger. Check it out if you missed it.The gist (and I quote):In you were savvy enough to have invested $1,000 in Microsoft when it went public in 1986, the value of your stock today would be close to $½m. But what if you had invested the same amount in a high-performing non-profit group; one that could show measurable, financial impact in your community? All you would have been eligible for is a one-off tax deduction.Think boldly for a moment. Imagine if there was a way to measure and then reward strategic investments in non-profits in the form of an annual and potentially growing tax deduction based on the same rate of return principle as the dividend. Imagine how that would revolutionise the productivity of non-profits, as well as create an incentive for individuals to seek out and support some of the most dynamic social and economic stimulators in their communities. More importantly, since Americans donated $295bn to non-profits in 2006, while businesses spent $1.2bn on cause-related marketing to trumpet their philanthropy, a shift like this might also lead to coverage of the sector with the same level of critical analysis that is afforded traditional businesses.Imagine how this might challenge the entire notion of “charity” in the US and usher in a bold new era of social and economic innovation.What I like about this kind of idea is it fundamentally shifts the way we think about ourselves. Are we charities seeking handouts or are we the best damn investment anyone could make in their community? Try to put on this kind of mental strut (work it!) next time you compose an “ask” of any kind. Your results are worth bragging about, and they are worth a reward for your donors investors.Don’t beg. Strut your ROI till the policymakers listen.last_img read more

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first_imgBad Habit No. 6: Being allergic to changeDiscipline is an important part of success, but it’s not everything. We’re standing at the edge of a new era for nonprofits. Our old donors are inexorably passing away. Their demographic niche is being filled by a strange, new tribe: the boomers. Their motivations for giving are different from their elders’. The way we talk to them has to be different — and we’re only beginning to understand the difference.At the same time, a powerful, new communications medium — the Internet — is crowding in on the print, broadcast and direct-response media. The techniques and tactics of the Internet are different in some surprising ways.The electric combination of a new type of donor and its new preferred medium puts us in a scary position: Change or die. Some are going to die.Yes, change is risky. New ventures fail more often than they succeed. But change is our only viable long-term strategy. Embrace change, and you have a long and hopeful future ahead of you.The good news about all these bad habits: They are merely mental — less constraining than cobwebs. They can be changed in the twinkling of an eye. The bad news: Mental chains can be the hardest to break.Source: This article originally appeared in the April 2008 edition of FundRaising Success magazine, www.fundraisingsuccessmag.com. Bad Habit No. 2: Talking to yourself, not your donorsThis is a tough habit to break because it requires you to think outside yourself. Truth is … your thoughts, your experience, your education, your relationship with the cause, and (most likely) your demographic and psychographic profiles are very different from your donors’. The moment you do (or don’t do) something in fundraising because it would appeal (or not appeal) to you, you are on shaky ground.Don’t create messages that would motivate you. Seek to understand your donors, and create messages for them. In fact, if something feels slam-dunk persuasive to you, take that as a warning sign that you’re missing your donors. Bad Habit No. 1: Being ashamed of fundraisingIt’s odd, but many professional fundraisers have an insidious belief that asking people for money is annoying, embarrassing or disrespectful.This puts them in confusing territory, where they need their donors to fund vital programs — but they don’t want to admit it. That bends their fundraising messages into pretzel shapes that look something like this: “Maybe you’d be interested in giving. It’s OK if you don’t give. We’re a very well-run organization, and we have many other sources of funding. You’re a small fish anyway, to be honest. But, you know, if you think of it, a gift would be a nice gesture.”That’s an exaggeration, but it’s not far from how shame-based fundraising operates. Besides its basic dishonesty, this type of fundraising fails to respect the reality of donors and their gifts.Donors want to be wanted. They need to be needed. They intend to make the world a better place. Coming to the rescue makes them happy. So if you need your donors, go ahead and tell them. Let them know the urgency and the stakes. Be direct. Don’t hide your need behind a mousy veil of pseudo-politeness.If you’re burdened with an attitude that asking for money somehow gets in the way of a real relationship with donors, you’re missing an important fact: For nearly all donors, giving is the medium through which they relate to you and your cause. Their gifts are the way they translate their values into action.Philosophical musings or high-level theory about the cause is beside the point for most donors. Giving is the main event. Asking is a great service. Be proud of it. Bad Habit No. 5: Being addicted to changeI know it’s boring to hear this, but a huge part of success in fundraising involves plodding along with proven programs, making changes in incremental and disciplined ways. It means saying the same thing over and over, even though you’re getting out-of-your-mind tired of it.Many a nonprofit has set aside lifeblood fundraising programs because it got tired of them — and suffered crippling revenue losses as a result. Don’t let that happen to you. Stay disciplined! When fundraisers are ineffective, it’s almost always because they are the victims of their own mental habits. These bad habits are more harmful than lack of resources, bad economic times or even stupidity. Conquer these habits, and you’ll raise a lot more money. Bad Habit No. 4: Basing decisions on fearBad things happen. And when they do, we often kick ourselves for failing to anticipate them. That’s why many people and organizations put prodigious energy into anticipating problems.Trouble is, you seldom anticipate the actual problems that happen. Instead, you build walls that are better at keeping innovation out than keeping you safe. Decisions made in fear do far more harm than the things you’re afraid of. Cast out your fear! Bad Habit No. 3: Making decisions on instinct, not factsInstinct can do you a lot of good in life, like warning you not to walk down the wrong street in a neighborhood you don’t know. But sometimes instinct is flat-out wrong. Here are some common instinctive beliefs that may feel true:Don’t ask someone who recently gave. Donors need to “rest” between gifts.Don’t call the donors; everybody hates telemarketing.Nobody reads long letters anymore.I can almost guarantee you that all three of these statements are completely wrong. Your results, as they say, may vary. But overwhelmingly, the facts will show these instincts to be false.When your instinct tells you something, use that as a starting point. Call it a hypothesis (that’s all it is) until you can verify the facts. You could end up shocked at how wrong your instincts were. That happens all the time. But armed with the facts, you’ll make much better decisions in the future.last_img read more

Posted in fofabvlic


first_imgThe email portion of your online fundraising plan should contain two main points:Getting organizedRemembering that content is (still/again) kingWork these initiatives into the part of your online fundraising plan dedicated to email marketing:Planning Tips:Plan, plan, plan… Develop an email messaging program for communicating regularly with donors and prospects. Think about e-newsletters, action alerts and/or event alerts. Make your newsletters worth reading!Build your list. Don’t buy a list–learn how to build one yourself. Aside from newsletter sign-ups, give prospects reasons to join your list–give them useful information (think value!), consider offering an incentive like a raffle for a gift certificate, and be sure to snag sign-ups at your events.Strategize and set goals. Determine what you hope to gain and what you’re shooting for with your email communications. Do you want to increase the size of your supporter pool? Do you want to increase your subscribers by a certain amount? Do you have a current email plan that you’d like to improve? Set some metrics for yourself (clickthough rate, etc.).Ask for direction. How often should you email your list? What types of messages do your donors want to hear? Ask them! Conduct a survey. Call a few top donors. Make communications a topic during your next volunteer meeting.Content and Campaign Tips:Get creative. Think about targeted messages for people who have expressed interests in certain subjects. Consider the roles of your various supporters (donors, volunteers, prospects) and what you want to communicate to/with them.Avoid gloom and doom. People like to feel hopeful, not helpless. Allow your messaging to cater to this tendency: Include attainable goals (“Every $30 donation gives a dog its shots!” “We’re already 80 percent of the way to our goal!”). People are not ATMs, and they’re involved with your organization for a number of personal reasons–sadness and hopelessness not among them.Mix it up. When considering your email strategy for the months ahead, think outside the fundraising-appeal box. And, when you are using email as a fundraising tool, keep your messages varied.…Test, test, test. You’re not a mind-reader. (No, I can’t prove it, but I can assume not.) With that in mind, test your email communications. Send one version of your newsletter to half of your subscribers and a different format to the other half. Which would have better clickthrough results? If you plop down a pair of fresh eyes in front of the versions, which one does your friend think is more readable?last_img read more

Posted in kiyxelbq

first_imgContinuing with haiku week (don’t forget to submit yours!), today is dedicated to marketers.Marketer HaikuThe truth is betterThreaded through the target’s eyeA web of beautylast_img

Posted in kiyxelbq

first_imgToday is an exciting time in business for both nonprofit organizations and for-profit companies. Social causes are getting a great deal of media attention as consumers are demanding companies take an interest in the welfare of society. More and more research is showing that consumers want to purchase from companies that care about their causes. Meanwhile, companies are regularly looking for unique ways to reach new markets and become more profitable.Nonprofit organizations can provide a way for companies to meet this need while furthering their own missions. Consumers’ heightened interest in social causes has provided an opportunity for collaboration between nonprofits and for-profits, helping companies expand markets and reach more consumers while supporting nonprofit organizations and their causes.Mikel Smith Koon, President of Mosaik Strategies, LLC, has worked with companies and nonprofit organizations for years guiding them toward effective, mutually beneficial collaborations. Download the transcript(s) and supporting documents to learn more about her discussion on these topic areas:Principles of successful nonprofit/for-profit collaborationsHow to apply these principles to your organization and make them work for youSpecific tactics including matching grants, focusing on companies within the community, community involvement, employee support, etc.last_img read more

Posted in gntmurcj

first_imgThree things to do if you’re not feeling inspired:1. Explain to a child what your organization does. This is a great creative jump-start if you have a hard time explaining the essence of your organization in your communications. Use what you said to the kid, it will be better than 90% of your messaging.2. Find a person your organization helped and tell that person what an honor it was to do so. They conversation you have will remind you of the difference you’re making.3. Imagine this is your last day of work and you only have a few hours to make a difference in some way. What would you do? Do it, even if you intend on working at your job forever.last_img read more

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