Learn how to ask, train, and support your team in this free webinar on July 23. Register now.

We all have an incredible resource right in front of us — our colleagues, board, donors, volunteers, and members. Just as you discuss your work and affiliations with your friends, family, and colleagues, these messengers share information on your organization’s focus and programs. With the right training, support, and incentives, this team of messengers can power up, helping you boost donations, program participation, membership, and more.

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Nancy Schwartz in All-Org Marketing Team | 0 comments
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Guest post by Sam Horn

Are you preparing an important communication? Whether it’s a report to your boss or board, [annual report, or donor thank-you campaign], its success depends a lot on whether people can remember what you said.

Because if they can’t, all the [time] you spent [researching], organizing your thoughts, and crafting your copy, video, or presentation just went down the drain.

The good news is I’ve developed a step-by-step process for shaping a repeatable-retweetable phrase-that-pays. Here it is:

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Nancy Schwartz in Messaging | 1 comment
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Flickr - mtsofanThat’s the subject line of this morning’s email from our local Jewish Community Center (JCC), asking for my input on its member survey.

My immediate response was to delete it because it’s all about the JCC’s needs and not about what us members need. At least that’s what the subject line conveys!

Has your organization ever alienated its audiences doing something like this, something totally narcissistic?

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Nancy Schwartz in Branding and Messages | 0 comments
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Set Your Marketing Goals

This updated marketing plan template takes you from big-picture goals to the right methods, activities, required skills, and budget, and impact! Preview the plan template here.

Eeesh! Those New Year, Jewish New Year, or this season/month/week resolutions—including the ones we set for marketing and fundraising work—are so hard to keep.

That’s because most marketing resolutions are specific action items (to-dos)—I am going to get this email list cleaned up this month, or I’m going to start posting our available dogs twice daily on Instagram—rather than guiding goals—the real “what we want to achieve.” Then, when things change in the environment in which we work—making those actions irrelevant or too difficult— or there’s no clear framework for assessment and adaptation, our aspirations come to a dead stop. As your marketing resolutions fade, you’re stuck in the same place you’ve been.

Instead, resolve to follow this proven path to effective marketing planning: READ MORE




Nancy Schwartz in Planning and Evaluation | 0 comments
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Dear Nancy: Our last two year-end campaigns were centered around client stories, each powered by a photo or two. We got fantastic feedback on these stories and I planned to feature similar profiles this year.

That plan changed radically last month when our social workers urged us to put our clients’ privacy first and stop using client photos. Our staff has agreed to respect their expertise and honor their request.

What are some practical alternatives I can put to work in these last few weeks? And how do I move forward with client photos in the future, as our stories are far less memorable without them?

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Nancy Schwartz in storytelling | 0 comments
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We all have an incredible marketing and fundraising resource right in front of us—our colleague, board member, and loyal volunteer ambassadors. But most of us look right past them!

You STILL HAVE TIME to launch your team of messengers to advance your campaigns. They’re already fans, so many of them will be eager and effective fundraisers. So that’s all good. However, your ambassadors’ reach, engagement, and ultimate impact on donations is directly related to saying the right thing at the right time. And it can’t be a script, repeated from everyone to everyone. Spamming robots just don’t work. But…

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Nancy Schwartz in All-Org Marketing Team | 0 comments
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There’s no better gift than learning from a friend. And what a treat I had recently, learning self-care at work techniques from Beth Kanter, a fellow speaker at the JCamp 180 conference.

We all know how pressured our work lives are. Which makes it imperative to jumpstart Beth’s approach (developed with Aliza Sherman, her co-author of  The Happy Healthy Nonprofit: Strategies for Impact Without Burnout). Here’s Beth’s 4-step ladder to well-being— and doing your best work—year round:

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Nancy Schwartz in Staff and Consultants | 0 comments
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Sometimes we have so many strong stories available that it’s hard to select the best ones to feature in a specific campaign. At other times, it seems impossible to source the right story or find a fitting one to harvest from the story bank. I’ve been there.

Luckily, there’s a proven, two-step solution to both problems:

  1. Pinpoint what your people need to understand about your organization’s focus (problem or cause), and about your solutions and impact.
  2. Select or find a story that provides those answers.

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Nancy Schwartz in storytelling | 0 comments
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Every election season is a barrier to connection, with people overwhelmed by 24/7 messages from multiple campaigns via multiple channels. But connecting this fall—through the noise of so many contentious midterm races—is particularly tough. That’s a real concern as we plunge into Giving Tuesday and Year-End.

Pile on the chaos we face on so many fronts—from the mass murder at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life Synagogue to constitutional threats and the refugee crisis—and it’s almost impossible to get attention, much less motivate action. We can’t fight it, nor can we sit it out.

Here’s how to get (and stay) close to your people right now:

1) Show your people you get them. The fast-moving shifting of norms we face is unnerving. People are feeling vulnerable, and the candidates’ fear mongering fuels our anxiety and sense of powerlessness.

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Nancy Schwartz in Strategy | 0 comments
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Does the protagonist of your story know what she’s getting into—how you’ll use her story, and the risks are of sharing it? Probably not, if you’re like most communicators. Let’s change that.

Organizations like ours—that share stories regularly to activate our people—wield power and influence. When a protagonist lends us her story to share, she opens herself up to curiosity, criticism, misunderstanding, and sometimes even physical harm. It is our responsibility to respect those whose stories we share, ensuring they 1) are comfortable with the way we use their stories and 2) stay safe.

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Nancy Schwartz in storytelling | 2 comments
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