Multichannel Marketing for the Small Nonprofit


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Social and Web 2.0 technologies have changed not just how we market and promote our programs and services, but also how we manage and lead our organizations, and how we build communities and create movements. Understanding the multichannel landscape is more important than ever before, as the pace of change is growing exponentially.

Email communications, social media, and mobile are important, but how will they help your nonprofit and the issues you work on every day? Most importantly, how the heck do you integrate and utilize these tools successfully without losing your mind?

This workshop will help you answer these questions, specifically with the small nonprofit in mind, and will guide you through the planning and implementation of online multichannel strategies that will spark advocacy, raise money and promote deeper community engagement in order to achieve social change in real time.

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Multichannel Marketing for the Small Nonprofit

  1. 1. MULTICHANNEL MARKETING FOR THE SMALL NONPROFIT Foundation for MetroWest January 15, 2014 Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  2. 2. ABOUT ME I help nonprofits find success online.  I am:  A former one-woman development & marketing department for small, community-based nonprofits.  A current consultant, volunteer and Board member.  A Returned Peace Corps Volunteer.  A mom. 
  3. 3. TODAY’S TAKEAWAYS Review of multichannel marketing – what is it and why is it important for nonprofits?  The Multichannel Marketing To-Do List  How to create a multichannel strategy  How to tell your nonprofit‘s story  The various channels you may use or be using to tell your nonprofit‘s story  How to measure your success  Resources 
  4. 4. WHAT IS “MULTICHANNEL”? Blogs, emails, direct mail, phone calls, billboards/advertisements, social media, mobile, events, more.  ―Multichannel‖ means an integrated approach and no primary reliance on just one communication channel.  Objective – Making it easier for a supporter or donor to engage with your nonprofit in whatever way is most appropriate for them. 
  5. 5. WHAT IS “MULTICHANNEL”? At it‘s core, multichannel marketing is getting the right story across, to the right people, through the right channels, for a specific purpose.  It involves telling your nonprofit impact story in a compelling, emotional way.  It involves relationship building.  It involves two-way communication, not just broadcasting. 
  6. 6. WHY “MULTICHANNEL”? Love it or hate it, web and mobile technologies have fundamentally changed the way we communicate.  You must use a variety of tools to reach your donors where they are, not where you want them to be. 
  7. 7.
  8. 8. THE DATA ON MULTICHANNEL On its own, email is not enough: the median clickthrough rate for 2013 was 0.5%;  Over 50% of email is on mobile now;  People participate because they‘re drawn in by stories and visuals;  Multichannel marketing is a great way to raise optimism and engagement. 
  9. 9. BENEFITS OF MULTICHANNEL  YES, the majority of donations still come from direct mail. (Blackbaud) BUT…  New donors are increasingly being found online.  Lifetime revenue per donor increases when donors come from an online source.  Online donors are more generous.  14% jump in online donations from 2001 to 2012. Sources: Blackbaud, SocialFish, The Chronicle of Philanthropy
  10. 10. BENEFITS OF MULTICHANNEL  Online donors like to be social. Email still has a higher ROI for nonprofits and is a critical piece of a fundraising strategy.  Declines in email open rates highlights the importance in connection with donors on more than one channel!  Sources: Blackbaud, SocialFish The Chronicle of Philanthropy
  11. 11. OBSTACLES TO MULTICHANNEL You may prefer a specific channel.  More moving parts to manage.  Can be overwhelming.  Increased time and expense. 
  12. 12. NONPROFIT COMMUNICATION TRENDS  2014 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report In 2014, nonprofit communicators plan to spend most of their time on e-newsletters, Facebook, and event marketing.  The most important social media channels for 2014 will be: Facebook (95%), Twitter (64%), YouTube (38%), LinkedIn (26%)  A third of nonprofits will email fundraising or advocacy appeals at least monthly in 2014.  Most nonprofits (59%) will send an e-newsletter at least once a month in 2014.   Resource:
  13. 13. MULTICHANNEL MARKETING TO-DO LIST         Infrastructure. Clear strategy. Audience identification. Call To Action. Compelling story. Selection of tools. Engagement. Acknowledgement and cultivation.
  14. 14. INFRASTRUCTURE How are you storing your data?    Raiser‘s Edge, DonorPerfect, Salesforce, Excel How will you maintain communication with donors and with interested people that come to you via these channels? Who is responsible?   Need a team or a Marketing Committee – not just one person! This is especially important at small nonprofits. What’s the plan?    Collection and storage of compelling stories, photos, videos, graphics and other visuals. Dropbox, Google Drive
  15. 15. CLEAR STRATEGY Clear set of goals – How will you know success?         Promote an event. Event sign ups. Increase in volunteers. Volunteer sign ups. Generate more donations. More revenue. Double the number of people who opt to receive newsletters via email. Email sign ups. Drive more traffic to a specific landing page on your website. Website traffic. Publicize information about new programs. Harder to measure – more phone calls, emails. Advocacy – petition signed, bill passed.
  16. 16. WHO IS YOUR AUDIENCE? Know your community first!      Know who you are targeting. What resonates with them? What is important to them? Do not build a beautiful marketing campaign that isn‘t for them.
  17. 17. USING NONPROFIT PERSONAS    A persona is a ―fictional character that communicates the primary characteristics of a group of users, identified and selected as a key target through use of segmentation data‖. By understanding personas, nonprofits can design content to fit their needs. Collect and analyze the data. Donor database, event attendees, volunteers, social networks (Facebook Graph Search)  Resource:
  18. 18. USING NONPROFIT PERSONAS      Sally Singlemom is a single mom who is 35. For work she manages a customer support team at a healthcare company, and has almost no social life. At work and in her personal life, Sally exhibits a high level of integrity and passion. She believes that it‘s her mission to create a better world for her children, and that creating that world exists in each and every interaction she has. Sally has tremendous leadership capability, but very little time for anything other than her job and her children.  Download this resource for free:
  19. 19. WHAT DO YOU WANT THEM TO DO? Call to Action (CTA) should be the same across all channels. People need to have an idea or concept presented to them five to eight times before they remember it. Determine what you want them to do.       Donate (specific amounts work better). Sign a petition. Tell their friends/spread the word. Make them an offer they can’t refuse! Urgent deadlines and matching gifts have higher open rates and larger average gift amounts.
  20. 20. WHAT DO YOU WANT THEM TO DO? A great CTA answers these questions:      Why me? Why now? What for? Who says? (peer-to-peer, social proof)
  21. 21. WHAT DO YOU WANT THEM TO DO? The majority of problems with most multichannel marketing efforts lies in the CTA.      You can develop a wonderful video and an emotional appeal, but if you do not explicitly tell people what action you want them to take, it will fail. They do not inherently know to click through to your website. They are busy and processing too much information. Make it easy. Don‘t bury it in a wall of text. Be concise!
  22. 22. CTA EXAMPLE  The goal of this campaign is to save the lives of 100 homeless animals. You can make a difference by donating before July 31, so that the shelter will not need to start turning animals away. Click the donate button today. (CauseVox)
  23. 23. CTA EXAMPLE
  24. 24. CTA EXAMPLE
  25. 25. WHAT DO THEY NEED FROM YOU?     Showcase your impact through a compelling story. Discuss the immediate need. How will donations benefit those served? What is the tangible impact?
  27. 27. SHOWCASE IMPACT #npstory @JuliaCSocial @handsontechbos
  28. 28. EXAMPLE A: ―Any money that you donate will go to Rokia, a seven-yearold girl who lives in Mali in Africa. Rokia is desperately poor and faces a threat of severe hunger, even starvation. Her life will be changed for the better as a result of your financial gift. With your support, and the support of other caring sponsors, Save the Children will work with Rokia's family and other members of the community to help feed and educate her, and provide her with basic medical care.‖ Full study at: Stanford Graduate School of Business Center for Social Innovation:
  29. 29. EXAMPLE B: ―Food shortages in Malawi are affecting more than three million children. In Zambia, severe rainfall deficits have resulted in a 42% drop in maize production from 2000. As a result, an estimated three million Zambians face hunger. Four million Angolans — one-third of the population — have been forced to flee their homes. More than 11 million people in Ethiopia need immediate food assistance.‖ Full study at: Stanford Graduate School of Business Center for Social Innovation:
  30. 30. WHY STORYTELLING? People don‘t remember bullet points.  People respond to emotion.  Feelings, not analytical thinking, drive people to donate. 
  31. 31. WHY STORYTELLING? Stories help you express your mission to the lay person.  Statistics might shock and awe, but they will rarely get people to take action. 
  32. 32. HOW TO “DO” STORYTELLING? Stories have a trajectory.  They do not need to be candycoated and inauthentically positive. They need to be real.  Ideas for stories:       This is how we started This is who we are today This is where we‘re going This is how we have been challenged along the way This is why we do this work
  33. 33. MINDSET SHIFT Storytelling requires an entire change of mindset.  Most nonprofit communications are boring, not compelling and easy to ignore. 
  34. 34. STORIES SHOULD COVER: The WHY: Your cause and the lives you are changing  The HOW: Your programs and services.  The WHAT: The impact you are having on the world 
  35. 35. WHERE TO FIND STORIES? Everywhere!  Everyone is responsible for telling the story of the organization.  This is not just the marketing or development department‘s job!!!!  Get on the front lines. 
  36. 36. EVERYONE HAS A STORY Everyone has a story – it might not be one that you can use, but it might lead you to an idea or person who can help.
  37. 37. CASEY HIBBARD, STORIES THAT SELL     “Praise” letters – talk with the submitter, collect more details Ask clients – include a ―share your story‖ page on your website, conduct surveys, ask at live events Stay positive Keep it varied – Make A Wish Foundation doesn‘t just tell about the people that benefit, they also tell the stories of the wishgranter, the volunteers and their sponsors.
  38. 38. BAY AREA’S COMMITTEE ON THE SHELTERLESS (COTS) Video of a man whose life was saved by COTS  No multiple takes or tricky editing  He‘s talking to an audience, live  Video is perfect for multiple channels 
  39. 39. THE LAZAREX CANCER FOUNDATION  The Bracelet Story – one couple that helps Lazarex through fundraising because the organization helped their son
  40. 40. PER SCHOLAS  IT professional job training organization – free tech education to unemployed & low-income adults
  41. 41. HOUSTON BALLET  Their Flickr account provides a backstage pass to their productions.
  42. 42. CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL “If it's raining where you are, the ocean played a role. If you drove to work, the seas are absorbing the carbon dioxide from your car. If you ordered seafood for lunch, it may have traveled halfway around the world to land on your plate. No matter where you live on Earth, what you do affects the ocean — and what happens to the ocean affects you.‖
  43. 43. MINE THE GOLD ―Think of the story itself as gold. You mine the gold, capture the story. Then you bring it back to your office and you need to pound that gold into different shapes and sizes depending on whom you‘re talking to, or also where you‘re telling it.‖ ~ Andy Goodman The gold is molded differently depending on the CHANNEL.
  44. 44. SELECTION OF CHANNELS/TOOLS  Select the channels/tools based on capacity (knowledge, tech-savvy), resources (staff, time), history (what works) and your audience. Email appeals  Social media  Email marketing          Welcome email for new donors (thank you, social sharing) Welcome email for new email sign ups (thank you, social sharing) Website donation landing pages (thank you, social sharing) Direct mail Annual Reports Newsletters Flyers Phone-a-thons
  45. 45. SELECTION OF TOOLS  More tools:          Text-to-give messaging Online or print advertising to promote the campaign Thank-you messages and campaign updates Fun content that doesn‘t ask donors for money! Helpful tip sheets E-books/white papers Photo galleries Videos Stickers, swag, free stuff
  46. 46. HOW DO YOU USE EACH CHANNEL? Website is where you have the most control around your brand. (HUB)  Email is where you get most of your online donations.  Facebook is where you get new donors and volunteers for your nonprofit.  Direct mail is still very important though! 
  47. 47. ENGAGEMENT  Be responsive!          Questions Messages Comments Likes Shares Retweets Blog comments Emails Etc.!
  48. 48. ENGAGEMENT  Include social sharing options in all the channels.  Ask participants to share your Call-To-Action with their social network by using social sharing buttons. Show why these actions (sharing on Facebook, donating) will help you get towards the solution to the problem.  ASK! If you don‘t ask, you won‘t get. 
  49. 49. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT & CULTIVATION  Say thank you! Over and over again! ―Thank You‖ videos for fundraising campaigns – Network for Good has a YouTube playlist: CDEEA  Diane Darling‘s The Thank You Project – handwrite at least 4 personalized TY notes per week.  Respond and reply in a timely fashion.  Partner with businesses to offer exclusive discounts or offers.  Pick a Fan of the Week (free apps). 
  50. 50. ACKNOWLEDGEMENT & CULTIVATION  Help your online fans give back. KIDS (Kids In Distressed Situations) partners with No Nonsense on a social media campaign.  For every Like on their Facebook page, No Nonsense would donate a pair of socks to KIDS.  
  51. 51. MEASUREMENT  Track your impact back to your original goals.         Reach. Number of fans, likes, comments, shares. Number of petitions signed. Number of donations. Website traffic. Website referrals. Email rates (not just open rates, click-through rates). Other.
  52. 52. QUESTIONS? Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp Next Up: Focus on the tools – websites, email marketing, social media
  53. 53. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS Website  Email marketing  Social media  Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  54. 54. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - WEBSITE 7 must haves for an effective nonprofit website 1. Easy to use Content Management System (CMS) that you can edit yourself. No middleperson!  2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. WordPress, SquareSpace Writing for the web and mobile audience. Well-designed, eye-catching graphics and photos Simple, consistent navigation. ―Subscribe to our updates‖ button. Social media icons. Donate Now button visible on each page. (Red converts better than gray.)
  55. 55. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - WEBSITE 6 must haves for an effective Donate Now page 1. Has organization‘s branding. 2. Opt-in option for e-newsletter. 3. Option to give monthly or quarterly. 4. Option to give in someone else‗s name or to make a gift donation. 5. Designed for expediency. 6. Social share buttons.
  56. 56. Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  57. 57. Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  58. 58. Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  59. 59. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - EMAIL       Email is not dead. It has the highest ROI of all marketing tools used by nonprofits. (American Marketing Association) Not really a ―newsletter‖ anymore –more of an ―ebulletin‖. Services: Constant Contact, iContact, MailChimp NOT OUTLOOK! No attachments! 15%-20% open rate is industry average.
  60. 60. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - EMAIL       Make it SIMPLE and easy to navigate 500 words or less – if you have more to say, start a blog. One Call To Action. Social media icons (for sharing or passing on the information). Make it personal and human. SUBJECT LINE is vital!!!
  61. 61. Tweet: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  62. 62. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - EMAIL    The Pajama Program raises money for pajamas and books for needy children. They raise about $1,000 per email.
  63. 63. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS - EMAIL Industry best practice: • • • • • • Send 1 to 3 e-bulletins/news per month Up to 6 fundraising appeals/year Never send on a Monday morning or a Friday. Don’t send them like clockwork – mix it up. Testing is always good to do!
  64. 64. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS – SOCIAL     Social media is not the best channel for fundraising. It works like a handshake. It is great for socializing, educating and bringing new people into the fold. It is primarily used for building trust and relationships and establishing credibility and authority.
  65. 65. FOCUS ON THE TOOLS – SOCIAL      Extension of donor relations – research, stewardship, cultivation, connection. Public awareness Transparency and accountability “Why would anyone care”? We know why! But can we convey it?
  66. 66. FACEBOOK LADDER OF ENGAGEMENT From: @JuliaCSocial @FFMW #mm4snp
  67. 67. VIDEO IS KEY TO SOCIAL SUCCESS Think about stories that are shareable.  Don‘t say too many things!!! Simple is better.  1-2 minutes, lose viewers every 10-20 seconds  How will you visually tell your story?  Who will guide the narrative? 
  68. 68. MULTICHANNEL MARKETING – PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER     Case Study – National Wildlife Federation Situation: Oil rig exploded in the Gulf. They used their website, social media and their blog to post resources and facts on the oil spill and it‘s direct impact on wildlife. Used all channels plus text-to-give to raise money for wildlife rescues. From:
  69. 69. MULTICHANNEL MARKETING – PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER     Case Study – National Wildlife Federation Used video and Flickr to visually document the impact that the oil spill was having on wildlife. **Empowered NWF staff to get content (photos, stories).** Their audience was looking to them for this information and updates. From:
  70. 70. MULTICHANNEL MARKETING – PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER      Case Study – Iraq & Afghanistan Veterans of America Build community online through multiple channels. Push Instagram photos to Facebook, tied it all together. Streamlined website. They make it clear how you can join them and help. From:
  71. 71. OTHER PROMOTION IDEAS Using ―influencers‖  Using Online Brand Ambassadors  Partnership with other organizations, companies, businesses – ―Brandscaping‖  Bloggers  Celebrities (local)  #npstory @JuliaCSocial @handsontechbos
  72. 72. “MY NONPROFIT IS TOO SMALL.”    There are many small nonprofits, even ones with only one staff member, who communicate very well with donors. Do not get hung up on the TOOLS or the shiny new object syndrome. Focus on a ―less is more‖ strategy.
  73. 73. “MY NONPROFIT CAN’T USE CLIENT STORIES OR PHOTOS.” You need to get creative. We are living in a visual world. Tell your success stories in interesting ways. Advice from Joanne Fritz at     Always get written permission from clients before publishing their stories.  Find creative ways to shield personal details and identities for clients who could be hurt or embarrassed if their identities or personal details were revealed.  Be transparent about what you are doing. Never try to hoodwink donors. They won‘t forgive if they find out.   Resource:
  74. 74. “MY NONPROFIT DOESN’T HAVE A SEXY CAUSE.”    There is an important reason that your nonprofit exists – right? Small and niche causes can sometimes have an advantage because their supporters are dedicated and vocal. Use these supporters as a focus group to find out what resonates with them.
  75. 75. Fear is counterproductive. Interacting with supporters is never a waste of time, no matter the channel. It’s not about you – it’s about those that you serve and the impact that you are having.
  76. 76. IN CONCLUSION… Always about the WHY – not the what you do or how you do it.  Be authentic.  Be credible.  Get over your fear.  Figure out ways to measure your success.  #npstory @JuliaCSocial @handsontechbos
  77. 77. Read this book!
  78. 78. And these two!
  79. 79. RESOURCES       The Starter Guide to Nonprofit Video Storytelling (free download): Nonprofit Storytelling for Crowdfunding & Online Fundraising: DoGooder Awards: TechSoup Digital Storytelling Challenge: SocialBrite: Nancy Schwartz – Getting Attention: #npstory @JuliaCSocial @handsontechbos
  80. 80. CONTACT ME! 978-578-1328 Twitter: @JuliaCSocial