Social media marketing for a non profit organization a postmodernist perspective


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This presentation is a study that I conducted serving as a consultant for the transnational Non-profit organization The Biodiversity Group. The content here covers the portion of my work concerning brand identity of the organization and includes data and the experimental design I constructed as a solution to their organizational needs. Campaign design and results are included and would be beneficial for other nonprofit groups to reflect when conducting similar campaigns.

As a development consultant I provide services to NGO's, transnational non-profit organizations and any other organizations that work on development issues worldwide. My services include organizational change & management assistance, process analysis, technology implementation, strategy development, operational improvement services with a heavy emphasis on mission, branding and positioning. For consulting services you can email me at

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  • Why

    Nonprofits account for 10% of private employment in U.S. (3rd largest U.S. industry)

    It has had an average annual growth rate of 2.1% from 2000 to 2010 whereas the for-profit sector experienced a 0.6% decline

    It’s difficult to be an NPO’s, they don’t get a lot of help or funding, big social impact.
    TBG because 1) previous experience 2) faith in mission.


    - ICT’s are changing the way that organizations engage with their communities

    They have drastically changed the landscape of global economics, and more specifically marketing.

    Highly correlated with improving exposure and expanding opportunity for individuals and organizations alike.

  • By digital system I mean the interconnected infrastructure of a series of platforms and networks that work together to accomplish a specific goal.

  • Focus: have arose as a result of globalization.

    Specifically, the progressive destruction of global ecosystems and their intimate relationship tied to the degradation of indigenous communities.

  • 1.) Globalization – Nebulous, hard to define

    2.) Approaches – Robert Reich

    3.) Definition of globalization– Sholte

    4.) TBG is transplanetary as it has global projects. Supraterritorial because connections of members transcend territorial geography.

  • Many miss out on opportunities for funding or partnerships because of the technological expectations formed by potential partner organizations.
    Only 32% NPO’s engage in long-term IT planning, 27% of support is provided by a friend, volunteer or intern
    Increasing technological capacity as well as a reorientation of leader perspectives regarding potential in ICT’s would greatly improve strategic use.
  • At the most basic level

    “Marketing is specifically concerned with how transactions are created, stimulated, facilitated, and valued (Kotler, p.49)... The things of value need not be limited to goods, services, and money; they include other resources such as time, energy, and feelings. Transactions occur not only between buyers and sellers, and organizations and clients, but also between any two parties (Kotler, p.48).”
  • Stats Support the idea that social media can be a powerful tool promotion and exposure for NPO’s
  • Consumer empowerment occurs as a result of
    existing market options
    consumer market knowledge
    consumer access to market information
    the ability of the consumer to take advantage of information access and acquired knowledge.

    Trends in customization, personalization and consumer empowerment online support the notion
    that consumers desire to be in control of the exchange process.
  • Marketing can serve as the framework for the purposes of empowering the consumer to participate in the construction of their own identities.
  • photography, videography and ethnographic field research
    Geomaira Patrón Alava

  • Marketing & communications approach for each of these channels.

  • Millennials aren’t interested in structures, institutions, and organizations, but rather in the people they help and the issues they support. The key for nonprofits, therefore, is to build a comprehensive Millennial engagement platform that invites them to participate in the cause and maximize their involvement. The way to build a positive relationship with millenials is by engaging them through inspiration, monthly giving opportunities, transparency and peer-to-peer engagement
    Moms are especially likely to participate in cause related marketing campaigns that involve the collaboration of a for-profit organization; these generally take the form of a for-profit organization donating an agreed amount of money for every purchase made for a particular product.

  • 4,995 likes at the beginning of the campaign and 6,036 at completion.
    Application interactions - these include things like playing the campaign video, liking the page, sharing with friends and entering into the photo competition.

  • We spent a total of $155.94 at an average cost of $1.68 per like obtaining 93 new likes for TBG’s Facebook page.
    The ad that we ended up using had an associated average cost of $1.58 per like.
    Fridays were less successful

  • conservation and photography oriented organizations and groups
    Amphibian Specialist group

  • 2 most important things to have for achieving organizational goals:
    Increase in technological capacity
    Good leadership that truly understands the potential in ICT’s

    Take a simpler approach next time, maybe a survey or option for people to vote on photos but not to submit them.

    Change the prize to something bigger, or have multiple prizes available.

    Buy advertising in the form of promotions targeted to existing Facebook members (depending on what campaign goal is).

    TBG not invest much more than $200 a campaign on advertising costs until a better understanding of value has been achieved. Also, in general no more than $1.70 should be paid for a new Facebook like.

    TBG Website
    Ad campaign advertisement should be more prominent on homepage of website.
    Re-assesment of goals for Youtube (needs consistency in brand communications)
    Needs solid introduction video.
    Recommend TBG build up their Vimeo account and use that platform moving forward as it has a more professional look.
    Email Marketing
    Vertical Response should be replaced with something like Mailchimp.
    Implementation and integration into a strategically designed yearly communications system is lacking.
    Campaign Platform
    If funding allows I recommend replacing Shortstack with something like Woobox or Promojam.
  • Revisiting content from the results

  • This campaign seemed somewhat too complex for some users.
  • Revisiting content from the results

  • Social media marketing for a non profit organization a postmodernist perspective

    2. 2. Social Media Marketing for a Nonprofit Organization In Partial Fulfillment of an M.S. in Global Technology and Development Jaclyn Hawtin 2014 A Post-modernist Perspective
    3. 3. Why did I choose to work with a nonprofit organization? Purpose Further, why did I choose to focus on information communication technologies as the medium?
    4. 4. • I asked the question: “What can I do to make TBG more effective as an organization based off of my interests and skillsets?” • I came up with the idea to design and test a digital system that could be used to improve online exposure. Purpose
    5. 5. • TBG is a global organization with projects in the U.S., Latin America and S.E. Asia. Focus: environmental & social issues. About The Biodiversity Group
    6. 6. Social Work Empower local communities by providing: • Valuable tools • Technology • Education These promote and aid in the formation of long-term sustainable solutions and enables them to preserve and protect their own environments.
    7. 7. Conservation Work Scientific Research • Conducts research of local ecologies. • Catalogues findings. • Publicizes discoveries of new species. Action • Publish papers. • Provide research to activists and other environmental organizations. • Create educational programs teaching people about these issues.
    8. 8. Organizational Infrastructure • Medium size nonprofit organization (IRS classification system) • Revenue for 2012 - $108,726.00 • Paul is only full time employee, 5-20 seasonal employees (10hrs/week, 3 months out of the year) • Trying to do too much with too little (every level of organization)
    9. 9. Marketing Problems • Lack of full time employees leads to individuals taking on a multiplicity of responsibilities that are more diversified in larger organizations. • Marketing has been the responsibility of Paul (Executive Director, or volunteers) • Results: Mediocre marketing outcomes, inconsistent branding
    10. 10. Problems TBG Faces Funding • Exposure • Efficiency • Volunteer recruitment & retention • Organizational Consistency
    11. 11. Literature Review
    12. 12. Why did I think this was a good idea?
    13. 13. Defining Globalization • Approaches: • Definition used: “the spread of transplanetary – and in recent times also more particularly supraterritorial – connections between people.” • This view of globalization can be seen as empowering NPO’s through the qualities of transworld simultaneity and transworld instantaneity of global connections • The issues resulting form the process of globalization can only be resolved by NPO’s & NGO’s. EconomicHistorical Sociological Technological
    14. 14. Defining Information Communication Technologies (ICT’s) • ICT is a superset term: • ICT’s: are both a catalyst & solution to problems emerging from globalization. • This project includes: hardware, internet, software &networking. HARDWARE TELECOM INTERNETNETWORKING SOFTWARE
    15. 15. How do ICT’s Impact NPO’s? • Causing pressure to: increase financial transparency organizational accountability • “working in an era of heightened scrutiny, greater demands, fewer resources, and increased competition” - Hackler & Saxton • ICT’s have the potential to incite organizational transformation by: • Reconfiguring a NPO’s structures & working relationships • Transforming & improving organizational learning & knowledge management systems.
    16. 16. Marketing Literature Problems • Marketing is a new discipline (100 years old) • Disagreements among marketing professionals and no comprehensive marketing theory. (Shelby Hunt - (formulation of a general theory of marketing) • Approached and accepted as a science • Makes space for nonbusiness organizations and social issues • Gap in the marketing literature: Most research has been focused on nonprofits with revenues of $500,000 or more/year. • Nonprofits that spend more than $10,000,000.00 per year account for 85% of spending in nonprofits account for only 4% of nonprofits in general.
    17. 17. What is Marketing? • Marketing is the transaction, that is the exchange of value between two parties (Kotler) • This definition made way for the inclusion of nonbusiness organizations. Value goods, services, money, time, energy, feelings Party 1 (person, for-profit business, non-profit organization, institution) Party 2 (person, for-profit business, non-profit organization, institution)
    18. 18. Trends in Social Media Marketing In 2012 • NPO’s tended to have 149 Facebook fans and 53 twitter followers per 1,000 email subscribers. • Average fan growth: Facebook 46% & Twitter 264% • Wildlife and animal welfare organizations experienced an increase of 23% in online revenue. Average one time donation was $57, monthly was $18. • Email lists for small NPO’s grew by 35%. Average value of a single Facebook like for nonprofit organizations is $214.81 (npENGAGE) a self-reported nonprofit survey this value was calculated from the average amount of money collected from each supporter over a 12-month period following the acquisition
    19. 19. Marketing & Consumer Empowerment Power is shifting: ICT’s cause empowerment: from them knowledge & opportunity can be derived. Consumer empowerment was unintended. • In 2011 sales in ecommerce retail reached $194 billion, up 16.4% from $167 billion in 2010. • In 1993 there were only 600 websites in the world, in 2012 that number rose to 634 million Suppliers Consumers
    20. 20. Postmodern Consumerism
    21. 21. Postmodern Consumerism What is postmodern consumerism? Consumption is the process by which postmodern individuals define themselves, their status and positions within society. “Choices consumers make regarding what kind of products and brands they consume determine that consumer’s tastes, mentality, values and ideology” - Firat
    22. 22. Methodology
    23. 23. How did I do this?
    24. 24. Project Phases Direct Field Research Campaign Design Campaign Launch Campaign Analysis Tabuga, Ecuador
    25. 25. Campaign Design Primary Goal New likes on TBG Facebook Page Facebook promotions (other pages) TBG Facebook Group Facebook Advertising (paid) Communication Channels Twitter Google + Email Youtube TBG Website TBG Facebook Page Secondary Goals Increased Traffic/exposure on all networks Additional email addresses into email marketing list Gauge potential of interactive social media marketing platform
    26. 26. Tools Required Platforms: Hootsuite, Shortstack, Vertical Response Software Tools: Adobe After Effects, Media Encoder, Photoshop, Fireworks Networks Required: Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Youtube Prize: GoPro camera
    27. 27. Demographics Mothers Millenials Most receptive to causes and philanthropic campaigns and are more likely to participate in them. moms control over 80% of household shopping millennial population combined is sitting on $40 billion in discretionary income
    28. 28. Results
    29. 29. Video Commercial TBG Campaign Commercial
    30. 30. Shortstack Overview of shortstack
    31. 31. Facebook Results • Facebook Likes – increased 23%, 1,152 new likes • Platform application views – 10,080 • Photo Competition Entries – 168 • Application Interactions – 4,892
    32. 32. Facebook Yearly Likes Snapshot • The average number of people talking about TBG daily for the months preceding the campaign was at 36 and increased to 55. • Similarly the average number of new likes coming in daily during the months of January and February of 2014 was at 4 and during our campaign increased to 33, that’s an increase of 825%.
    33. 33. Facebook Exposure • The number of unique users that saw any content associated with TBG’s page for the duration of the campaign was 97,561. • This is an average of 2,945 people per day. • This is a big increase when compared with the average observed in Jan and Feb of 1,316 per day.
    34. 34. Example Facebook Posts
    35. 35. TBG Facebook Page Header
    36. 36. Facebook Promotions Message on TBG Facebook group page. Ad from the Facebook advertising Campaign
    37. 37. Facebook Promotions - outside groups & organizations GoPro Ad
    38. 38. Post Statistics • Total post reach: 42,105 (this is the number of unique users that observed all posts. ) • Post impressions: 75,527 • The number of unique users that viewed each full post was 679, and impressions were at 1,218. • Most successful post: 175 interactions. (right) • Engagement - 13 posts out of 62 received more than 50 interactions.
    39. 39. Email Marketing Statistics List size: 4,561 members total all emails were opened 3,221 times, and 357 people clicked through to the campaign on Facebook. average email open rates for nonprofits are 25.12% and click through rates are 3.25%
    40. 40. Email Marketing Campaign
    41. 41. Recommendations
    42. 42. Recommendations for TBG Construct a strategic set of organizational goals. More specific recommendations regarding platforms, networks and websites are included within my paper. Effective organizations demonstrate strength in five key areas
    43. 43. Value & ROI Assessment • Costs: time, money, software, content & advertising. • Value: collected emails, donations, actions taken, page views. So we can say that for $750 over a 4 week time period we achieved: • 1,152 likes to the TBG page • 168 new emails into TBG’s email marketing list, reached • 97,561 unique users (people who viewed any content by TBG) • Engaged with 4,534 users (people who interacted with content) The actual cost per Facebook user, which was the primary goal of this campaign, comes out to about $1.54 per new Facebook like. 2012 Nonprofit Social Networking Benchmark Report average value Facebook like$214.81 Potential value: $185, 817.60 - $247, 461.12 over the course of a 12-month period.
    44. 44. Conclusion
    45. 45. It Works! • Interactive Social Media Marketing is an effective tool for TBG to use for improving online exposure. • It follows then that this is a tool that may potentially be effective for all Nonprofit organizations and similarly Nongovernmental organizations. • Limitations Include: Inability to formulate realistic figures regarding value for a Facebook like.
    46. 46. Thank You A special thanks to Gary Grossman & Mary Jane Parmentier for being such wonderful mentors to me  Sooooooooooo much gratitude!!!!!