Bentonville Communication Workshop


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This presentation is from a workshop conducted for nonprofit leaders in northwest Arkansas on March 14, 2013.
Feel free to use it to assist your organization, but please do not share it or post it anywhere else on the Internet without the owner's permission.

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  • Introduction, From mid-Missouri A note about slide handouts: A PDF with all slides will be available after the training, in a few days, link will be emailed to you.
  • Slides for this presentation will be available to everyone on our website. We will email the link to you.
  • Nonprofits are a big deal. Huge. Almost 10% of the GDP comes from nonprofit organizations. In most communities, nonprofits are some of the biggest organizations
  • NPOs are big business. In my community, they are the biggest (Cox and St. Johns)
  • As the population grows, the need for NPOs will continue. More population – more community needs.
  • Whether you are in the business of saving people from a terrible situation – one person at a time. Or teaching people a new skill to better their lives. Or at the front end, being proactive, and working to prevent problems, you have the need for effective, clear communication to connect with the right people. Donors, volunteers, board members and staff, potential clients, and the community as a whole.
  • No such thing as “a failure to communicate”
  • We speak 100-175 words per minute. We are able to hear & understand 600-800 wpm. Easily distracted.
  • You may think you are communicating by sending out a variety of signals, but unless you are reaching your intended audience, it is a waste of time and energy.
  • Whether it’s your son trying to convince you to give him money or the car salesman convincing you to purchase a car, nearly everybody uses communication to influence others.
  • The way you talk about your organization is critical to connect with the very people and businesses who can help you succeed. In a recent survey of nonprofits, more than 80% said that their current messages were not connecting with the people who needed to hear it. This is Code Blue for Nonprofits! As communicators.
  • What keeps organizations from having successful communication and connecting with audiences? These are the reasons most people gave. This is what is getting in the way. The barriers.
  • No coach worth his weight would enter a game without spending time discussing a strategy, reviewing the competition, practicing, and fully understanding what it takes to be successful.
  • Where do you start? Start inside the organization. You can be sure, if you and your staff and board are unable clearly articulate who you are what you do and why you do it, you have almost zero chance of communicating successfully to the general public.
  • What are your top communication goals? Volunteers? Donors? New partnerships? Increased program services? What tools will you need to accomplish these goals?
  • Too many organizations have not clarified who they are or what they do. Even their own staff and board are unclear about it.
  • Tagline provides enough, but not too much Use exactly as written: Business cards, online, verbal, email signatures, phone messaging Is a memorable statement that conveys your uniqueness and value
  • Homeboy – they do job development and gang prevention. Their tagline has emotional response and you get what it means. It speaks directly of what they do. Houston Food bank, let’s you know it is not only nutrition, it is changing lives. Very clear and powerful.
  • A good tagline has the ability to stay in the public’s mind for years, even decades. What is WalMart’s? McDonald’s?
  • Short and memorable, give just enough to want more but not too much. Call to action is a request for a follow up call, email or meeting to discuss how to get involved (donate, attend, buy, volunteer) Eyebrow test. Up or down?
  • You know that catfish don’t usually stay where Bass stay. They don’t eat the same thing. They don’t eat at the same times.
  • Every organization needs clear agreed-upon messages. Each talking point conveys important information. These can be customized for each target.
  • These messages are a “go to” resource, on hand to use. For everyone in organization, staff – board – volunteers, using the same messages about your organization.
  • Remember, we see symbols. The familiarity comes from a combination of shapes (letters) and colors. So be consistent in every communication. Your letterhead, signage, business cards, website, all should have a consistent look.
  • If someone in your organization asks why “messaging” matters, show them this. Texas could have easily had a campaign that said “Don’t Litter” This took time to understand the audience and said it in a way they could connect.
  • Do not say “General Public” Be specific. Don’t forget about communication with partners, referral agencies, where clients are located. Example: Dogwood Ranch needs foster kids. If CD does not send them, where will they come from?
  • Think about specifics: Where do they live, shop, what is their history of giving or activity?
  • Competitive advantage is all about differentiation. Funders complain about duplication in the nonprofit sector. It may be clear to you and your staff how what you do is different than a competitors. But in the mind of the public, it tends to get fuzzy.
  • There is a lot of duplication and confusion. I work with nonprofits every single day. And yet every week I learn about a new organization or one that was unknown to me. You can be sure the general public is very confused about what you do and how it differs from the hundreds of other groups.
  • Remember, unlike for-profits, you are not selling a product. You are selling a belief, an “ Impact ” or “ Hope ” Look at these two organizations. Why would you choose to support one over the other?
  • Most of the time, competitive advantage will be in the form of execution, not in owning a complete different idea or technology. Maybe you are an innovator, or you are more efficient, or you have a well-known brand name
  • In the nonprofit world, most organizations have fewer "products" or causes, but still have distinct customer segments.  Refer to the IMPACT sheet
  • When you talk before a Rotary group or the Lion’s Club or some other organization, you are often talking to key people from your community. They are well connected.
  • Most Nonprofits have very limited staff. Unless you are omnipresent, you cannot be a more than one place at a time. But a Speaker’s Bur multiplies that. 10 board members or 10 volunteers greatly enlarge your voice.
  • It makes sense to have a presence on these sites, viewed by more people on earth than any other sites. This is a great way to share videos, interviews, blogs, etc. And you can connect with other groups that have similar interests. Many People expect legitimate organizations to have presence on these site. If you are not there, they are left to wonder why. Facebook and Twitter have changed the world. Look at what happened in Syria and other countries. Entire nations have been changed because of the power of these.
  • I love the media. I worked in it for years, and still have a ton of friends who work in TV and newspaper business. It’s not as cool or trendy as social media, but using traditional media is still a very powerful way to get the word out about your organization.
  • Different than outright “philanthropy” or “charity” because it is a form of advertising, branding, marketing. Studies have proven that customers choose companies that “care” about people and communities.
  • Families don’t listen anymore. What happens when people don’t listen to each other? They feel detached, nothing in common. What happens when organizations don’t listen to their staff, volunteers, donors, partners, and the community? They become detached and uninterested.
  • Bentonville Communication Workshop

    1. 1. Strategic Communication Training for Nonprofit Professionals Dan PraterThe Center for Nonprofit Communication Drury University © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    2. 2. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    3. 3. In this session:● Nonprofit overview● Communication 101 – the basics● Communicating Internally and Externally● Success with the Media● Developing a Plan● Communicating within a Community © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    4. 4. 501(c)(6)The NFL generated at least$9 billion in revenue last season.
    5. 5. The Nonprofit World Missouri: 48,225 Trusts, sports, social, Civic, labor, ag, cemeteries, chambers, credit unions, Scientific, daycares * © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    6. 6. The Nonprofit World Arkansas: 18,619 Trusts, sports, social, Civic, labor, ag, cemeteries, chambers, credit unions, Scientific, daycares * © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    7. 7. Benton County – 1,085 $9,284,516,692Washington County – 1,242 $1,718,585,152 *Income: $11,003,101,731 Health care Education Public sector Charitable Community development Civic Clubs Social Faith * © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    8. 8. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    9. 9. What can effective communication do for your organization? Engage and motivate individuals and communities to act Expand your influence with current and potential donors/volunteers Strengthen your current people & programs © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    10. 10. Many of the problems that occur in an organization arethe direct result of leaders failing to communicate(effectively).Faulty communication causes the most problems. It leadsto confusion and can cause a good plan to fail. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    11. 11. Rule #1: YOU CANNOT NOT COMMUNICATE © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    12. 12. YOU CANNOT NOT COMMUNICATEThis rule applies to individuals AND organizations. Telephone Signage Electr on yees mater icEmplo ials Location Print materials Conscious vs. Subconscious
    13. 13. o ise MessaN ges © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    14. 14. A study by the University of California found the typical American consumes 100,000 electronic words in a single day. TOO MUCH INFO !! © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    15. 15. Communication is a highly competitive process © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    16. 16. Communication is a highly competitive process © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    17. 17. Rule #2: A communication is not complete unless it is received and understood (decoded). George Bernard Shaw once said, “The greatest problem with communication is the illusion that it has been accomplished.” © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    18. 18. Communication is a complex process Education Cu Paren t expe rrent s rienc Past e s Beliefs & experiences ValuesSender Message Receiver encoding decoding LIFE FILTERS © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    19. 19. Nonverbal Communication is dominant © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    20. 20. Rule #3: Words are symbols and are open to interpretationWord exercise: © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    21. 21. Words are symbols and have powerful meaning © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    22. 22. Rule #4: One of the primary purposes of communication is to influence or persuade others. You ca n trust m e Dona Listen to me te orga to our nizat My point of view ion is the best one ct y produ Buy m You s Vote hould for m about care e this Our company is ay better than othersDo it this w © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    23. 23. Messages connect 16% 84% Messages do not connect86% messages are difficult to remember80% messages are not consistent, confusing. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    24. 24. Organization Finding focus MONEY Competition Training EconomyResources Staff TIMEUnderstanding the work Board of Directors
    25. 25.  1. Who do you want to talk with?2. What do you want to say to them?3. When will you say it?4. How do you want them to respond? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    26. 26. Who?Right Person Where? Place Time When? Way How? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    27. 27. WHAT? Before your audience Internal (community, etc.) can Understanding understand who you are, it is essential for you to have a clear view of yourself. ExternalUnderstanding © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    28. 28. WHAT?1. What is your goal or purpose? Limit to 2 or 32. What is your message foundation? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    29. 29. If I were to walk into your office and ask five different staffmembers to tell me your mission statement or explain whatyou do in one or two sentences – how many differentanswers would I get?
    30. 30. What are the four most important things youraudience should know about your organization? Take five minutes to write these out on your own, without talking to those sitting by you. Are these messages about PEOPLE? If you had to choose the top message, which would you choose? Now take time to share, compare ideas and choose the top things © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    31. 31. Your message foundation has three major components:1.Tagline2.Elevator Speech3. Key MessagesTagline: Essence of your messaging Should be most used message No more than 8 words Builds on your name Conveys commitment Easily repeatable © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    32. 32. “Nothing Stops a Bullet Like a Job” © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    33. 33. 1. Tagline: Ensure it works with organization’s nameDo: Emphasize emotion and action Make sure it is easy to say/pronounce Be too genericDo Say something you can’t deliver 100%not: Change your tagline too often *Getting Attention: Nancy Schwartz
    34. 34. The Message Platform World’s most Famous Taglines: Just do it. Nike You’re in good hands with Allstate Melts in your mouth, not your M & M candy hands Please don’t squeeze the Charmin Think outside the bun Taco Bell It keeps going, and going… Energizer What happens here, stays here Las Vegas
    35. 35. 2. Elevator Speech• Forces clarity• Helps you see other’s perspective• It helps engage partners1 Lead-in Intro - Your role in organization Your new or unique resource of value2. Differentiator that deserves immediate attention Open ended conversation3. Engagement motivator starter...pause…question4. Call to action Request to meet, email, call *Getting Attention: Nancy Schwartz
    36. 36. Let’s Practice:Write your elevator speech with four components: Lead-in, Differentiator, Engagement motivator, Call to Action Elevator: 30 seconds © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    37. 37. Don’t get locked in to one approach © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    38. 38. 3. Key Messages3 to 6 messages maxNo more than 2 sentences eachRespond to most common questions Complete this list, give to Who we are all staff/board/volunteers, practice them, use them What we do everywhere Why we exist What we do not do What we do not talk about (internal only) © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    39. 39. EHC works to improve community health, createaffordable neighborhoods and promote sustainableenergy in the San Diego/Tijuana region.We work closely with community members to prioritizeenvironmental health issues.We design campaigns around issues that affect our communitiesto advance public policies.Community members drive our campaigns.By combating environmental health issues and improving thehealth of individuals, EHC helps bring about social change andenvironmental justice. *Getting Attention: Nancy Schwartz
    40. 40. The most effective communication isalways… C lear oncise consistent compelling © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    41. 41. CLEAR Avoid inside jargon or industry language: NA PTSD UA TPR GA L l i ctiona FST Jurisd itional s Dispo © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    42. 42. CONSISTENT Same wording used on all materials and in person Same colors and fonts used on all materials and signs Same logo designs on everything
    43. 43. CONCISE Have a point(s), be organized.COMPELLING Three things: Passion Personal testimony People
    44. 44., easy to understandNot about trash – about people and pride.Tough and cool © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    45. 45. “He who aims at nothing hits it every time.” © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    46. 46. WHO?Who in your community, if you couldchoose any audience, would you like to tellyour organization’s story? This list can include specific names of people or groups, or it can include generic types or categories. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    47. 47. Who’s who list:People Groups Business Executives Educators Civic Leaders Chamber of CommerceElected /Gov’t. officials Associations Business Owners Nonprofit groups Retirees The Media Former Clients Clubs Former Employees Retirees Exercise Take a couple minutes to make a list. This list can include specific names of people or groups, or it can include generic types or categories. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    48. 48. Competitive Advantage (Defined from the viewpoint of the “customer”) The presence of visible, obvious, and measurable ways in which your organization or product differs from (and is better than) its peers.
    49. 49. Competitive Advantage To establish this competitive advantage (over other nonprofits) you must talk about your organization in a way in which no one else is talking about theirs.
    50. 50. Competitive Advantage - Both aid disaster victims - Both have expertise in serving people in need - Both have red in logo - Both rely on volunteers Intl. stature Christian principles Political/religious neutrality Commitment to Poor Gov’t. affiliation (FEMA) Affiliation with Christmas
    51. 51. Competitive Advantage Blood Donations Intl. organization Local organization Gov’t. affiliation (FEMA) Aids local hospitals
    52. 52. Competitive Advantage Nonprofit competitive advantage is an organization’s ability to sustain social value using: a unique asset, an outstanding execution, or both. Asset: Execution: Great location Lower cost to funders or members Better program = better outcomes Efficiency in services cost Unique programs/services Speed (e.g. disaster response) Great name brand & recognition Sound marketing/PR Powerful partnerships Better accountability-transparency Well-connected board of directors
    53. 53. Competitive Advantage One of the fastest ways to understanding your audience is to identify the type of people who most likely care about your organization. Impacts your NPO has on the world. Other NPOs that do similar work/missions Type of supporters who care about this work/mission Why these people should/would choose you (over your competitors). What do they believe about your organization that makes them support you?
    54. 54. WHERE? Churches Chamber of Commerce Colleges/Universities Nonprofit groups The Media Clubs & Associations Civic Groups Schools A speech before the Rotary Club gets far more attention than yet another mail appeal for donations. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    55. 55. Most of these organizations are made up ofprofessionals and business people, the leaders ofthe community. Your Organization © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    56. 56. HOW?Contact the person or group (face-to-face, phone,email, letter, social media).Ask if they are familiar with your organization.Tell them you are interested in letting their membersknow more about the important work yourorganization is doing in your community and why youexist.Be flexible and accommodating.Relationships first – donations later. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    57. 57. Speaker’s Bureau Staff, volunteers, board members (select carefully) 1. Train properly 2. Provide adequate resources Key messages (aka talking points) Printed materials Powerpoint presentations © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    58. 58. The Golden Circle ® Why How What ® Simon Sinek, “Start with the Why”
    59. 59. Signage Name Telephone Recognition Comm. InvolvementEmployees Public Location Image Print materials MediaMission/ vision Message Platform Your Your Organization Audience Public Awareness Bridge © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    60. 60. A word (or two) on Websites Current Visually appealing (nonverbal) Consistent messaging and colors Purpose-centered (The Why) Donor friendly News-Media section © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    61. 61. Media Donate Connect Connect BoldGraphics Donate Get involved Connect
    62. 62. Media Getinvolved BoldGraphics ConnectMedia Donate Social Media
    63. 63. Mon ey is long no e a va r l excu id se! Open, free to use and customize MS Office - $25 (regular $200-$399) Upgrade to Windows 7 - $12 (regular $125) Adobe Creative Suite $150 (regular $700) Libreoffice.orgFREE: Google documents
    64. 64. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    65. 65. More than 1.2 billion active usersAverage user has 130 friendsAverage user spends 15 hours per week 105,779,710 registered users 300,000 new users per week 180 million visitors per month 490,000,000 users © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    66. 66. Traditional Media
    67. 67. One of the fastest ways to build awareness of your program is by obtaining coverage in the media. News vs. adsWho are the “media?” Newspaper Magazine Radio Television Online Other print © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    68. 68. What is News?Information about recent events or happenings. TV, Radio, and Print in your community need content. The best stories are: LOCAL and are about PEOPLE © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    69. 69. Writing a press release is one of the oldestand most effective methods of getting mediacoverage. Make sure the information is newsworthy Local, local, local 5Ws and H Contact Info twice (clear and available) Organizational summary (boilerplate) Fax or email your press releases Timing is important © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    70. 70. Never pass up an opportunity Major organizational news (good or bad) Ceremony Honor/Award to program, board, staff Fundraising Event Educational program Great Volunteer highlight Reasons for Coverage Seasonal New Study Partnerships with other groups © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    71. 71. Conversations are going to occur – with or without you.Do you want to be active in shaping the discussion? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    72. 72. Proactive Contact them to request coverage, give story ideas They contact you to get a response Reactive to a story or news event.Remember: It is not the media’s job to promote your organization. It is your job to initiate contact and to get coverage. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    73. 73. What does it say about yourorganization when you don’trespond to news or an event? Unaware that it is occurring (uninformed) Don’t care it is occurring Afraid to take a stand Fear that your opinion may be unpopular Don’t have an opinion © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    74. 74. Write an Op Ed or letter to the editor Response to current story/editorial Response to new law/ordinance Response to publicized event Commenting on Seasonal issue Commenting on new study Other… © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    75. 75. First day of Spring (new hope) - March 20 National Womens Day – August 9 World Mental Health Day – Oct 10 International Human Rights Day – December 10September is National Recovery MonthOctober is National Medicine Abuse Awareness MonthApril is National Alcohol Awareness MonthChildren of Alcoholics Week -- February 13-19Write down at least five ideas for writing a letter or opinion piece. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    76. 76. Tips for Working with the Media Speak off the recordDON’T: Assume the interviewer is an adversary Repeat the interviewers words Feel obligated to accept unfamiliar facts or figures Have a designated spokesperson Humanize the story by using illustrations DO: Flag key points like, “The most important thing is…” or “I think the bottom line is…” Set the fact straight and present facts Get to the point © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    77. 77. Plan Your Trip…What two things areessential to planninga trip? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    78. 78. You should be heard at least once a month somewhere in the community. Jan Feb Mar Apr Ma Jun July Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Releases, Op Ed, LTTE, coverage TV – Radio interviews and ads Print Ads Brochures Annual Rpt Events, Fundraisers Internet/ Online Community Events Educational(clubs, groups) Take time to fill in some ideas for coverage on your 2013 events © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    79. 79. Community fairs, expos, Schools and collegesfestivals, events © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    80. 80. Community Involvement:Be a part of your community.Chamber of Commerce, Rotary, schools A speech before the Rotary Club gets far more attention than yet another direct-mail appeal for donations. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    81. 81. Visual StorytellingTurner Someone Like You it in Eyes Kids Fest 2011 Run © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    82. 82. For-profit Nonprofit organizations organizations SUCCESS! Your For-Profit’s Organization’s Goals Goals Share goals - create shareholder and social value Cause - connect with a range of constituentsMarketing - communicate the shared values of both organizations © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    83. 83. Is Communication a Priority?90% do not conduct market research to better understand their audience. Only one in five said they know what their peers are doing in the area of communications.59% said their communications budget is “weak," and another 12 percent said they have no communications budget at all.80% said their board discusses communications once a year or less. said their groups do not regularly include communications staff85% members in the decision-making process. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    84. 84. Need Help?College or University – Contact Communication/Marketing see if they have classes where students do projects.Ad Agencies – Contact them to see if they do “pro bono” workto help nonprofit organizations.Friends of Board members or Churches: Know anyone who isgood at making videos? © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    85. 85. Listening Most powerful of all. We live in a culture that doesn’t listen What makes a person a good listener?Effective listening is essential to clearcommunication, and clear communication isessential to leadership. © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    86. 86. Focus GroupsSurveysIn-personInternet or email © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    87. 87. When you dontpromote, a terriblething happens…NOTHING © Center for Nonprofit Communication
    88. 88. The Center for Nonprofit Communication © Center for Nonprofit Communication