February 20, 2013

How to successfully harness your email list for your cause

Tips for getting the most out of email marketing

This is the second of a two-part series. Also see:
How to use your Facebook page to build your nonprofit’s email list

Target audience: Nonprofits, cause organizations and advocates, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises, marketers.

Guest post by Susannah Vila

Collecting email addresses and using them to mobilize your supporters is one of the simplest but most important tactics for online organizing.

As Ricken Patel, founder of Avaaz, told us, “Someone operating out of their bedroom can do this better than a multimillion-dollar organization with a huge staff.”

Before you get started, though, look over these tips for how best to turn a list of e-mails into a powerful tool for activism. Continue reading

January 7, 2013

7 ways to increase your nonprofit’s donations

Photo by zizzybaloobah on Flickr

Make donating simple, say thank you & showcase your results to keep donations coming

Target audience: Nonprofits, fundraisers, cause organizations, foundations, NGOs, social enterprises.

John HaydonAcquiring a new donor is more expensive than keeping a current donor.

Most nonprofits know this, but it seems like most of them spend a larger amount of their resources on acquiring new donors instead of keeping their current donors happy.

Plus, the lifetime dollar value of a happy donor is way more than the value of a donor who only gives once. Continue reading

May 2, 2012

An engaging, uplifting nonprofit promo video

Code for America from Inkerman Road on Vimeo.

Code for America: 5 tips on upping your video game

Lauren MajorCode for America, a nonprofit that uses technology to transform local governments, boasts a creative, compelling promotional video that not only clearly describes its message but also engages its viewers to get involved. In just five simple steps, any nonprofit can follow its example.

Be human and personal

1Be sure to make a personal connection early in the video. Many organizations and causes have a cohort of motivated, smiling people behind it. Bring these people to the forefront and show how upbeat and promising working for the cause is! Code for America illustrates its work environment by interviewing employees about what part of the job and cause they like. People are human and social creatures and are more inclined to stick with a video if they can relate to the on-screen subjects.

Use captivating visuals

2Watching a talking head is no fun for anyone. But listening to someone speak while looking at colorful flowers or a fun work environment is far more interesting. The supplemental footage in a video that does not capture a talking head is called b-roll. For example, Code for America’s video displays a shot of the office while founder Jennifer Pahlka speaks over it. Continue reading

January 10, 2012

Cause marketing campaigns making an impact

coca-cola-campaign

These nonprofits are teaming up with corporations to make a difference

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, businesses, brands, CSR professionals, marketing managers.

Guest post by Daryn Sung-Lee, for Vivanista

At Vivanista we believe that we all have a bit of philanthropist inside us. Beneath the protective masks we put on lays the innate desire to do good. Cause marketing, where a company partners with a cause like breast cancer research or a charity donates funds to tsunami relief, enables regular people to consume mainstream products while doing their small part.

walk-run-campaign

Although there’s nothing like good old-fashioned hands-on philanthropy, it does give causes and nonprofits the visibility and marketing resources they couldn’t get on their own. eBay, the world’s largest e-commerce company, is breaking ground in the world of cause marketing. They started an in-house cause called Giving Works in 2003, which allows eBay users to donate money to any cause of their choice. Basically, users can choose to donate money along with a purchase, or donate a percentage of whatever they sell to an organization. In this way, eBay has made it incredibly easy for thousands of nonprofits, big or small, to receive funds and visibility.

ebay-techfever

With Twitter and Facebook making it even easier to become informed about local and world causes and charities, and with support from businesses, cause marketing is beginning to make a difference

Last year Microsoft’s Bing search engine received the Cause Marketing Halo Award, given by the Cause Marketing Forum, for their partnership with DonorsChoose.org. With the cause of education in mind, both organizations sponsored a contest called Our School Needs, where students from schools across the nation sent videos, pictures and essays explaining their schools’ needs. Bing and DonorsChoose were responsible for donations and projects in schools across all 50 states. As a result of the contest, children gained a familiarity with social media tools like Twitter, blogs, playlists and YouTube, which they used to submit their schools to the contest. Continue reading

November 11, 2011

GoodTwo: Give something back to your donors

GoodTwo-deals
Online deal offered to donors through GoodTwo by Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk.

Discover an easy way to fundraise by rewarding your donors with online deals

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, businesses, brands, educators, community organizations, fundraising professionals, individuals.

Guest post by Kristen Elworthy
Director of Marketing & Publicity, GoodTwo

It’s a challenge that every nonprofit, school and community organization faces in a soft economy: donor money is more necessary than ever, but many donors are reducing the size of their gifts or the number of organizations they support.

Solution: make it worth the donor’s while to contribute to your cause. GoodTwo is a fundraising platform that rewards donors with great deals and offers from businesses (think online deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial) while also generating donations for fundraisers. We provide a way for fundraisers to connect with their donors by giving something back.

How it works

  • GoodTwo works with a variety of brands across the country to create great offers that have a built-in donation to a cause in each sale.
  • Causes like yours come to www.goodtwo.com and sign up for a free fundraiser. It takes about five minutes to create your GoodTwo page.
  • Select from all of the deals that we have available across the country, based on the ones that your donors would like best.
  • Promote your page using our built-in e-mail, Facebook and Twitter tools. Every time one of your donors buys one of the deals, they save money and you get a donation!

Continue reading

October 27, 2011

How to make co-marketing work for your nonprofit

Comarketing Partnership
Photo by hjalmeida for Big Stock

Three simple steps to establish a successful partnership & boost your organization’s profile

Target audience: Nonprofits, NGOs, cause organizations, social enterprises, businesses, brands, marketing professionals.

Guest post by Amanda DiSilvestro
Content Writer, Resource Nation

Amanda_DiSilvestroThe phrase “two heads are better than one” is becoming more and more popular as the economic outlook becomes less popular. In other words, many nonprofit organizations have begun to realize that striking up a partnership with another company can be beneficial.

Co-marketing, or cooperative marketing, essentially amounts to an agreement between two companies that says each company will help market the other. For example, an organization dedicated to helping the homeless may work with a food bank, or an organization working to renovate public schools may work with a construction company.

Benefits of establishing a co-marketing partnership

  • The other company can refer your organization to customers. This will give you an entirely new group of people who may be interested in your cause.
  • People who recognize and trust your partner company will be more likely to give your organization’s ideas a listen.
  • You have the option to share expenses and profits with your partner company. For example, you may want to share an ad in a paper or include your logo in your partner’s e-mail messages.
  • Both companies can use each other’s talents when creating marketing campaigns.

Now, the tricky thing about co-marketing is actually finding a company you want to work with, and then drawing up the paperwork. If you do one and not the other, those benefits I talked about are likely to go right down the drain. Fortunately, if you follow a few simple steps you will come out of a co-marketing deal with success. Continue reading