Volunteer Services Overseas

  A MARKETING PLAN TARGETING PUBLIC
     SECTOR WORKERS IN SCOTLAND




Chris Watt
chriswatt8...
Introductory Comments

 “Volunteering plays a valuable role in society, not just in
  helping reduce global poverty, but ...
Segmenting the Public Sector in Scotland
Key Segments: Local Government
Key Segments: NHS Scotland
Key Segments: Civil Service
Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis

 Political
   Announcement in March 2008 that the UK Government will
    provide a ...
Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis

 Social
    94% of employers agree that long-term overseas volunteering
     broade...
Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis

 Social
     Demographics: The UK’s population is set to increase from 60m to
     ...
Marketing Goals

 Long-term overall goals:


    Long-term growth through increases in application rates from
     appro...
Marketing Objectives

 Objectives to achieve these goals:

     Achieve high levels of awareness of VSO and its voluntee...
Marketing Plan: The Marketing Mix

 The marketing mix of a voluntary organisation differs slightly
  to that of a commerc...
Marketing Mix: Product/Offering

 VSO’s offering: Opportunity to volunteer overseas for a
  period of up to two years.
  ...
Marketing Mix: Price

 No fee, as such, to apply for a volunteer assignment with
  VSO.
 However, volunteers will have t...
Marketing Mix: Promotion

 Key message that VSO must promote to public sector
 professionals:

    Public sector profess...
Promotion: Viral Marketing

 An online viral marketing initiative should be at the heart of
  VSO’s new campaign!
     S...
Promotion: Information Sessions

 Information sessions at places of public sector
  employment have been recognised as be...
Promotion: Online Advertising Space

 Research has shown that because internet use is generally
  initiated with some spe...
Promotion: Email Marketing

 Sponsorship of e-newsletters sent out to VSO’s target
 audience (i.e. managers in the public...
Promotion: Public Relations

 Press activity in the form of PR is free and allows a
  brand to increase its awareness mor...
Marketing Mix: Place

 Specifically, three websites in particular should be
  targeted.

     Scotsman.com, the website ...
Concluding Remarks

 The proposed marketing plan for VSO’s new campaign is
  comprised of mostly new media, and is suppor...
Concluding Remarks

 For a marketing plan timeline and breakdown of
 costs please refer to the written report.



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Volunteer Services Overseas

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A summary presentation detailing a marketing plan, targeting public sector professionals in Scotland, I prepared for VSO in March 2009.

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Volunteer Services Overseas

  1. 1. Volunteer Services Overseas A MARKETING PLAN TARGETING PUBLIC SECTOR WORKERS IN SCOTLAND Chris Watt chriswatt87@gmail.com March 2009
  2. 2. Introductory Comments  “Volunteering plays a valuable role in society, not just in helping reduce global poverty, but in the wealth of experience volunteers will bring into UK public service” • Douglas Alexander, Secretary for International Development  Nevertheless, only around 350 public servants volunteer overseas per year.  The following marketing plan:  Focuses on: Building long-term awareness of the VSO brand and the organisation’s work  Aims to: Increase inquiry and application rates to VSO, specifically from public sector management, business and IT professionals in Scotland
  3. 3. Segmenting the Public Sector in Scotland
  4. 4. Key Segments: Local Government
  5. 5. Key Segments: NHS Scotland
  6. 6. Key Segments: Civil Service
  7. 7. Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis  Political  Announcement in March 2008 that the UK Government will provide a £13m fund to ensure that UK public servants do not lose out on their pension contributions when they volunteer overseas.  Economic  The worsening economic recession in the UK has led to increased financial concerns.  Fears over being unable to find employment after career breaks or not being able to sell or rent one’s house, in order to volunteer overseas, have been intensified due to the current economic climate.
  8. 8. Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis  Social  94% of employers agree that long-term overseas volunteering broadens skills and experiences and that 48% of employers claim that overseas volunteering increases employability (Cook and Jackson 2006)  However, social barriers to overseas volunteering still exist.  These include the fear of falling behind in one’s career, concerns over leaving family behind and the challenge of assimilating to a new environment overseas.
  9. 9. Analysing the Market: PEST Analysis  Social  Demographics: The UK’s population is set to increase from 60m to 65m by 2016, and to 71m by 2031. However, by 2031 there will be at least two million more pensioners than children.  This will have huge implications for the housing stock, pensions and the benefits system, and may act as a barrier for overseas volunteering as workers may feel they have to earn at home to support their elder family members.  Technology  The increasing use of the internet has provided an easy way for brands to reach consumers.  However, the ease of advertising online has led to an increasingly competitive environment, meaning that innovation is now essential to effectively reach one’s target audience.
  10. 10. Marketing Goals  Long-term overall goals:  Long-term growth through increases in application rates from appropriately skilled professionals in Scotland.  Reach annual business management and IT UK recruitment target (2008/09: 70 B&M professionals and 16 IT professionals).
  11. 11. Marketing Objectives  Objectives to achieve these goals:  Achieve high levels of awareness of VSO and its volunteering opportunities for public sector professionals in Scotland.  Increase employers (and employees) understanding of the professional development benefits of overseas volunteering in order to increase the number of public sector organisations who promote/encourage their employees to volunteer overseas.  Encourage increased advocacy and fundraising activity on behalf of VSO in Scotland.  Increase the enquiry rate from public sector manager, business and IT professionals in Scotland by 25% in 2009/10.
  12. 12. Marketing Plan: The Marketing Mix  The marketing mix of a voluntary organisation differs slightly to that of a commercial organisation.  Why? The product or “offering tends to be more ideological than a typical physical good marketed by a commercial firm.  Consequently, 8 P’s apply:  Product  Price  Promotion  Place  People  Physical Evidence  Process.  Philosophy  Bruce (1994) comments that a charity’s philosophy in delivering goods, services or ideas is fundamental to a sound marketing approach and thus should be made a clear component of the marketing mix.
  13. 13. Marketing Mix: Product/Offering  VSO’s offering: Opportunity to volunteer overseas for a period of up to two years.  Complemented with a “VSO package” comprised of flights to overseas destination, accommodation, living allowances, health insurance, visas, holidays and professional support for returned volunteers.  USP: Volunteering overseas with VSO allows participants to change disadvantaged people’s lives, whilst also providing the prospect for further personal and professional development, increasing volunteers employability.
  14. 14. Marketing Mix: Price  No fee, as such, to apply for a volunteer assignment with VSO.  However, volunteers will have to engage in fundraising activities in order to cover any costs preliminary volunteer costs.  Thus, the time and effort potential volunteers donate to fundraising, as well as their commitment to giving up employment and their salary in the UK in order to volunteering overseas for up to two years, can be considered the price of a VSO placement.
  15. 15. Marketing Mix: Promotion  Key message that VSO must promote to public sector professionals:  Public sector professionals’ pension contributions will continued to be paid whilst they volunteer, for up to twelve months.  Conveying this favourable news appeal is crucial as it helps counter the barriers that potential volunteers face when they consider taking a career break or going on a secondment with VSO.  By not losing out on ones pension by volunteering, public sector employees can volunteer knowing that their financial position at home will not be as hugely affected than if they had to forfeit their pension in order to take up a placement with VSO.
  16. 16. Promotion: Viral Marketing  An online viral marketing initiative should be at the heart of VSO’s new campaign!  Sharp viral ad campaigns can net ten times the exposure of a traditional campaign  Viral campaigns have the potential to reach global audiences and markets at a fraction of the cost of traditional advertising.  In order to ensure that VSO’s viral marketing initiatives are passed on by consumers, they must be innovative and creative, and the message must resonate with consumers.  Viral campaign would act as VSO’s first stage of engagement with its target audience, increasing awareness of the VSO brand and its volunteer work.  Further promotional techniques would then be required to persuade and encourage public sector employees to enquire and apply to VSO for overseas volunteer placements.
  17. 17. Promotion: Information Sessions  Information sessions at places of public sector employment have been recognised as being effective measures for reaching VSO’s target audience in this instance.  Information sessions at public sector offices in Scotland will lead to higher attendance rates than generic VSO information days for all managers in Scotland.  These sessions will provide the opportunity for VSO staff/returned volunteers to convey the professional development benefits of overseas volunteering, encouraging organisations to actively promote overseas volunteering with VSO to their workforce.
  18. 18. Promotion: Online Advertising Space  Research has shown that because internet use is generally initiated with some specific goal or motive in mind individuals are more likely to express favourable attitudes toward banner ads that promote that motive.  Consequently, VSO should utilise online banner ads on such sites as “societyguardian.co.uk/voluntarysector”.  Interactive banners and video-streamed banners have consistently shown to lead to higher click-through rates than inactive banners.  Consequently, VSO should employ animated, as opposed to static, banners.
  19. 19. Promotion: Email Marketing  Sponsorship of e-newsletters sent out to VSO’s target audience (i.e. managers in the public sector) by third parties.  Sponsorship, or inline-advertising within e-newsletters, should be employed with:  The Scotsman’s “Scottish business briefing” e-newsletter, sent to 15,000 of Scotland’s managers and business professionals five days a week  Public Sector Forum’s e-newsletter, sent to 26,000 public sector professionals each week.
  20. 20. Promotion: Public Relations  Press activity in the form of PR is free and allows a brand to increase its awareness more effectively than advertising alone .  Engaging with hot topics that are relevant to VSO and public sector professionals will allow VSO to maintain a consistent presence in key titles read by managers in Scotland’s public sector.
  21. 21. Marketing Mix: Place  Specifically, three websites in particular should be targeted.  Scotsman.com, the website of Scotland’s national newspaper  Visited by over two million visitors per month, leading to over 12.5 million impressions per month  SocietyGuradian.co.uk, the website of the Guardian Newspaper’s public sector supplement  Visited by over 270,000 public sector professionals per month, leading to over 660,000 impressions per month  PublicSectorForums.co.uk, an online forum specifically for public sector workers in the UK  Has over 26,000 subscribers.
  22. 22. Concluding Remarks  The proposed marketing plan for VSO’s new campaign is comprised of mostly new media, and is supported by traditional media in the forms of PR and personal selling, to increase awareness of VSO and “pull” consumers to the VSO website.  It is in this way that VS combine traditional and new media in order to create clear and consistent messages through all components of the communications mix so that they reinforce each other.  Creating, maintaining and enhancing long-term relationships with individual customers is especially important in today’s increasingly competitive environment.
  23. 23. Concluding Remarks  For a marketing plan timeline and breakdown of costs please refer to the written report. Thank You! Any Questions?

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