Why Communications Advocacy Should Remain #1 On Your To Do List

I was confronted (yet again) a couple of weeks ago with a pointed reminder of one of philanthropy’s biggest Achilles’ heels–the often overlooked or misunderstood importance of integrating innovative communications strategies into every program.

Peter Goldmark, head of Environmental Defense’s Climate and Air Program, headlined the Finding Philanthropy’s Sweet Spot Forum.  He’s smart and visionary, in many ways. But, when talking about a recent ED partnership with Federal Express to hybridize their trucks, he didn’t mention marketing as one of the strategies used to maximize the impact of this initiative. And, when asked by a forum participant how to get the word out, he replied that there’s no good way to do so in this age of information overload.

Yikes, so defeatist. And so disappointing coming from a philanthropic leader so smart and articulate. But so important in emphasizing that our job as advocates for the vital role of communications in philanthropic programming (on the foundation and nonprofit sides) isn’t done. And will never be done.

Read more here for guidelines on being an effective advocate, and my recommendations for marketing strategies that will build the impact of the ED/FedEx partnership.

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Nancy Schwartz on May 31, 2006 in Leadership, Nonprofit Communications, Philanthropy | 0 comments
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