I interviewed Kivi Leroux Miller today about her new book “The Nonprofit Marketing Guide.”  There were several nuggets of wisdom that popped out of our conversation, and I thought I’d share them with you.

Here’s what she shared about what every nonprofit should know about marketing:

Tell stories.  Learn how to tell a story about a person your organization has helped.  A good story has a beginning, a middle, and an end.  The story should be about the person, not about your organization.

Lose the jargon.  Keep all your communications simple and easy to understand.  Your donors don’t know your industry slang and acronyms.

There’s no such thing as the general public when it comes to marketing.  The general public includes everyone.  But you don’t need to reach everyone.  You only need to reach those people who are likely to support you. You must identify the specific groups of supporters who are out there, and craft your message to them.

Be clear about your message.  Don’t try to cram too much into it.  And include a call to action.

When deciding how best to reach your audience, first consider their preferences.  If most of them are hanging out online, then you might be able to completely ditch your print newsletter.  If not, then don’t try to force them online, because it won’t work.

I encourage you to get a copy of “The Nonprofit Marketing Guide.”  It’s easy to read (my copy is already marked up, tagged, and dog-eared!) and is full of practical ideas you can implement right away.

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