Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop

Register Now! The first 15 registrants save $100.

I’m back, along with my friend and fellow nonprofit marketing expert extraordinaire Kivi Leroux Miller, to tell you about this special opportunity to find the solutions to your 2012 to 2013 marketing challenges: The Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop. Plan in a day—blueprint forever
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Nancy Schwartz on March 21, 2012 in Professional Development | 0 comments
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Join Kivi Leroux Miller (NonprofitMarketingGuide.com) and me for this rapid fire learning experience – get your answers here.

Kivi and I recorded this half-hour webinar on July 21, 2011 to answer the questions you submitted via email, Facebook and Twitter. When you listen in here, you’ll get answers to a broad range of questions, including:
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Nancy Schwartz on August 10, 2011 in planning | 0 comments
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Reserve Your Spot by Sunday July 31 to Save $100 — Join us at the Total Focus Marketing Plan WorkshopOctober 12 in NYC.

This is the time to propel your organization’s marketing forward with a smart plan. My partner, Nonprofit Marketing Guide’s Kivi Leroux Miller and I can help you do that in a single day.

We’ll walk you through the creation of a focused, doable marketing plan — one that clarifies what you should be doing marketing wise and maps how to get there.

You’ll end the day with your draft of a clear and practical marketing plan that will work for your organization—one you are fully capable of implementing.

Register Now to Save $100

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Nancy Schwartz on July 28, 2011 in planning, Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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This is the time to propel your organization’s marketing forward with a smart plan! And I can help you do that in a single day — October 12, in New York City.

I’m partnering with one of the best nonprofit marketers I know, Kivi Leroux Miller of NonprofitMarketingGuide.com, to offer you a way to transform your tangle of marketing to-do lists and conflicting priorities into a clear, practical and doable plan.

Join us for the Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop, October 12 in New York City. But don’t wait: This is the final Total Focus Workshop we’ll be giving in 2011, and seats are filling fast!
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Nancy Schwartz on July 21, 2011 in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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Being that I’m a less is more person, I’m continually looking for the right metaphor to integrate in my writing as a short cut to understanding.

That’s what metaphors do — relate something your audiences don’t know or understand to something they are familiar with. It’s one of the most reliable techniques there is (as long as you know your audiences well enough to be confident that they’ll get it — the same criterion goes for using humor in your communications).

Metaphors are a simple and proven way to build connection with your target audiences. And they frequently deliver a bonus — many metaphors are highly-visual and greatly enliven plain vanilla content to make it much more memorable.

Here’s a great metaphor model shared by Mary Beth Lambert, a participant in the recent Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop held in Seattle. Mary Beth participated on behalf of The WashBoard.org, the program she markets for the Washington Scholarship Coalition.

A program name like that raises so many questions: It is related to clean laundry, highly-developed abs or what? But Mary Beth clarified The WashBoard.org’s focus and impact in a second with this metaphor: “It’s the E-Harmony for scholarship students.”

This metaphor enables us to immediately understand that the program makes matches between students seeking scholarships and scholarship providers. The imagery is still fresh in my mind!

What metaphors have you used that generated an “aha?” And which ones have fallen flat, and why? Please share your metaphor experiences here.

P.S. Learn more on how to strengthen your nonprofit’s marketing impact with the Getting Attention Guide to Nonprofit Marketing Wisdom.

Nancy Schwartz on June 30, 2011 in Branding and Messages | 2 comments
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A huge part of what I love about guiding nonprofit communicators to greater impact is seeing the “aha moment.” I witnessed a great one last week while presenting the Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop in Seattle last week, with Kivi Leroux Miller.

DD Coutts, Vice President of Development at Glenbow Ranch Park Foundation was among the terrific group of energized workshop participants. During the segment on getting to know your target audiences, DD had an “aha moment” that will make all the difference in her ability to connect effectively with the very folks who can help move the Foundation’s mission forward.

She had been identifying the Park’s visitor base — the ideal source for volunteers now and donors later — as families but realized, with our guidance, that this broad category didn’t give her the insight she needed to connect with them. There are just to many kinds of families, varying in size, interests, available time, motivation for using the park and other dimensions.

Here’s how DD moved forward to group (a.k.a. segment) her target audiences into three distinct groups that use the park:

  1. Families with young children
  2. Families with older children
  3. Immigrant families

This segmentation led to DD’s next insight — that each group uses the park in different ways. She named and described the segments as follows:

  1. Nibblers: Families with young children. Tend to stay on the periphery of the park and visit for brief periods.
  2. Explorers: Families with older children. Explore the complete park, spend more time there.
  3. Celebrators — Extended families, usually immigrants. Use the park as a gathering spot.

You see how much more useful these segments are, enabling DD to take the next step to profile a persona within each segment — an individual or two who epitomize the segment. Your personas show you what your primary audiences’ wants and habits are, so you know how to pinpoint where your organization’s wants overlap with them. That’s the sweet spot for marketing success!

Kudos to DD for going beyond the obvious!

P.S. Learn more on how to strengthen your nonprofit’s marketing impact with the Getting Attention Guide to Nonprofit Marketing Wisdom.

Nancy Schwartz on June 23, 2011 in Audience Research | 0 comments
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I’m partnering with one of the best nonprofit marketers I know, Kivi Leroux Miller of NonprofitMarketingGuide.com, to offer you a way to transform your tangle of marketing to-do lists and conflicting priorities into a clear, practical and doable plan. Join us for the Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop, June 16 in Seattle.

Plan with Us for a Day—Get a Blueprint Forever
Please join us for this intensive, limited-enrollment planning seminar. It’s a special opportunity to find the solutions to your 2011-2012 marketing challenges, as we guide you to set realistic goals, craft your messages, build the support and partnerships you need, prioritize your strategies and inventory the time, treasure and talent required.

Register TodayJust a few seats for Seattle are left.

P.S. Even if can’t join us for the workshop, please join us for a no-host nonprofit happy hour in Seattle on June 15. No RSVP is necessary.

Date & Time: Wednesday June 15, 5- 7 pm
Where: Boka Kitchen & Bar – 1010 First Avenue at Madison, Seattle
We’ll have a section of the bar set aside for us. Look for the happy, nonprofit types by the high tables near the bar.

Thanks much to our good friends Peter Drury, Erica Mills and Zan McColloch-Lussier for organizing.

Nancy Schwartz on June 2, 2011 in planning | 0 comments
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Join Kivi and Me for this Free Webinar
Learn How to
Set the Big-Picture Marketing Goals that
Take You Where You Want to Go!

My friend and colleague Kivi Leroux Miller and I have heard so many of you say that your marketing isn’t all it could be. And worse, you don’t know where to start to fix it.

You’re frustrated by how hard you’re working without generating the results you expect, and that your organization needs. Aargh!

So we’ve decided to show you exactly where to start, with setting your goals, in this free 30-minute webinar.
Register Now – Seats are Limited
Monday, May 2, 2011
3:00 – 3:30 pm ET (12:00 – 12:30 pm PT)

When Kivi and I first put our heads together on how to team up to help nonprofits strengthen their marketing impact, marketing planning was at the top of our list.

Join us for this free 30-minute webinar to learn how to set clear marketing goals for your organization. They are the first crucial step towards an ambitious but fully-doable nonprofit marketing plan.

Register now for this free webinar on Monday, May 2, 2011, at 3:00 pm Eastern (Noon Pacific).

Seats are limited so register today.

Nancy Schwartz on April 18, 2011 in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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I have so much to do but don’t know where to start!

That’s the crucial–but seldom acknowledged or discussed–challenge on which I co-led a vibrant mind meld at the Nonprofit Technology Conference (#11NTC), along with superstars Katya Andresen, Kivi Leroux Miller and Sarah Durham.

We were thrilled at the number and engagement level of the hundreds folks squished in the room. In fact, discussion got so lively we were hushed by the organizer of the session in the next room! That request exemplifies the excitement of the crowd in discussing this stuff and in meeting each other–brainstorming partners in the making!

Katya created these summary slides on the fly as we provided one-minute consulting and participants shared their bright ideas on how to:

  • Get priorities right
  • Balance is crucial between marketing and fundraising efforts, not just within marketing
  • Manage up and build leadership buy-in on priorities you set
  • Balance incoming requests (agency model) when you’re acting more strategically (i.e. you have your own job to do)
  • Do the internal marketing necessary to build support, investment and a team of messengers among your colleagues
  • Cut down your program (hint – don’t cut a channel if it’s working, just scale back your effort)
  • Break up with social media if the ROI isn’t there.

Here are a few other outtakes on the session:

What do you have to add to these bright spots? Please share it here.

P.S. Get a jump start on your marketing planning via the Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop led by Kivi Leroux Miller and me. Karen and Tara participated last fall with great result! 2011 workshops are scheduled for June 16 in Seattle and October 12 in New York City. Learn more nowthe workshops sold out last year and 2011 seats are going fast!

Nancy Schwartz on March 23, 2011 in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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Last week I had the opportunity to join three fantastic colleagues to share guidance on this crucial nonprofit marketing challenge at #11NTC (NTEN’s annual conference). And I want to share that guidance with you.

What a pleasure to work with Kivi Leroux Miller of NonprofitMarketingGuide.com; Karen Secular, Communications Director at the Arnold P. Gold Foundation; and Tara Collins, Communications Director at the Watershed Agricultural Council! And what a thrill to have so many focused, sharp, engaged session participants asking questions and sharing their wisdom.

Weaving your loose ends together is a prerequisite to your nonprofit marketing success but remains, for so many of you, a stubborn barrier. Here are two key tools we shared at the session; they are a huge help in getting started with your weaving:

Here are 12 steps to weaving a tight, powerful marketing plan, highlighted by session participants via Twitter:

  1. Moving marketing from support function to a strategic player is the game changer. (@stacyjclinton)
  2. Stop acting as the in-house marketing agency at your org, and take control of the situation (@egratto) A.K.A., “Stop taking the tickets and start driving the bus,” as Tara says.
  3. Only 16% of nonprofits have marketing plans. You need one to make the move to strategic player. (@ksuzj)
  4. A marketing plan is essential because it directs your focus and keeps you on a clearly defined path. (@elimcgon)
  5. However, marketing planning is ongoing series of refining and understanding. Don’t plan more than 1 year out. (@volmatch) Then break it down further to 3-month chunks @wendymarinaccio)
  6. Rule of 3: Identify no more than 3 target audiences for your messages or you risk diffusing your efforts. (@stacydyer)
  7. Meet your audiences where they are (channels and perspectives) (@weinrichc)
  8. Your brand is not just “clothes you wear” (e.g., logo and colors) It’s your organization’s whole personality-the way you walk & talk. (@linzbilks)
  9. Put all of your marketing material on a table; see if there is consistency through ‘em (@weinrichc)
  10. Unless your blog is supporting your brand or a call to action it’s just words. (@ksuzj)
  11. Vital part of mktg planning is outlining every single task down to the nitty gritty – who is doing what when (@volmatch)
  12. Failures are what our successes are built on. (@mkdm, @andystitt829)

If you don’t have a plan, or have one that lives in your head or hopes, is just notes, not formalized and approved, or simply not working, get on it right now! It’ll change your life, and your marketing impact.

Please let me know what’s getting in your way, and I’ll give you some recommendations for pushing through!

For more insights from the session, review the slide deck and crowdsourced notes.

P.S. Get a jump start on your marketing planning via the Total Focus Marketing Plan Workshop led by Kivi Leroux Miller and me. Karen and Tara participated last fall with great result! 2011 workshops are scheduled for June 16 in Seattle and October 12 in New York City. Learn more now–the workshops sold out last year and 2011 seats are going fast!

Nancy Schwartz on March 22, 2011 in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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