nonprofit

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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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 | 1 comment
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Reboot Nonprofit MarketingOur daughter Charlotte is finishing up a blissful summer at a few different day and overnight camps. At the end of each and every day, her mind and creativity are stimulated, she’s made new friends, and she sleeps solidly with a smile on her face. She finishes the summer inspired, energized and smarter than ever.

I envy her greatly. But you and I are too old for summer camp (find me an adult camp, please!). Instead, I set out an a discovery mission—asking fellow nonprofit staffers and consultants how they reboot to tee up for a great fall and forward.

There’s still time for you to reboot. Dig into these inventive approaches a.s.a.p.:

1) Seek a different point of view: Gillian Ream Gainsley, who works in Communications and Development at the Ypsilanti District Library (MI), takes a unique approach:

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Nancy Schwartz in Professional Development | 6 comments
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Flickr: Alan EnglishThe adventure in question is my first-time sabbatical which runs through early September.

I’m taking this time to reboot, and to see what bubbles up. And I hope to return with a practice for personal nourishment firmly in place, and the confidence and ability to mesh that more effectively with my job. That’s the work behind the work I want to do better.

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Nancy Schwartz in Professional Development | 4 comments
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I’m hosting the Nonprofit Blog Carnival this month, and would like to invite all bloggers to share your “one book” recommendation.

Please blog on:
What single book (not blog, not conversation, not Facebook page) has changed your life as a nonprofit staffer, consultant or vendor? Plus the why and how. Write and submit your “one book” post today, while it’s on your mind. Deadline is May 27.

On May 31, my blog post will feature summaries and links to posts on these “one books,” and a few of the dozens of responses from other nonprofit professionals.

Your “one book” can be focused on a topic far outside nonprofit topics, if it’s moved you forward in your nonprofit work. For an example of a fantastic post on this theme, take a look at this post by Pamela Grow.

WHAT’S YOUR ONE BOOK?
A few weeks ago, long-time colleague Steve Damiano, Director of Professional Development at New York City’s Support Center for Nonprofit Management, asked me to recommend a few marketing books for his nephew, soon to graduate with a marketing degree. Four titles quickly came to mind, a flow that made me realize that this is an ideal topic for the Nonprofit Blog Carnival.

And I’ll publish the compilation as a reading list for our community, based on your posts.

The deadline is May 27.

You can enter your submission in one of two ways:

1. You can fill out the carnival form here
2. You can email a link to the post to nonprofitcarnival (at) gmail.com

P.S. Here’s my “one book” — looks dry as dust but…

Nancy Schwartz in Professional Development | 4 comments
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How to Defend Your Nonprofit Marketing Budget You know it at home and at work. Times are tough, and probably going to get tougher before they get better.

Even though your marketing challenges are greater than ever, with your audiences' minds focused on other concerns and their budgets stretched by daily living, you're likely to be worried about your marketing budget. And you should be.

Nonprofit management's first response to tough times is often to reduce expenditures across the organization. After all, that's the best way to balance the budget. Every department has to scale back, and marketing is often one of the first targets. Right?

Wrong! Although it may seem right (politically) to accept the decision to slash your budget, it's the wrong move to make. In the long run, accepting a significant budget cut will harm your organization. When a nonprofit cuts marketing, it severs one of the hands that feed it.

Here's how to proactively safeguard your marketing budget, or defend it if its already under attack.

P.S. Yes We Can! When a powerful tagline is joined to a compelling mission…nothing is impossible! Download the free Nonprofit Tagline Report for must-dos, don't dos, case studies and 1,000+ nonprofit tagline examples!

Nancy Schwartz in Nonprofit Communications, Planning and Evaluation, Strategy | 0 comments
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