Tag Archives: Non-profit Marketing

The One Rule Every Marketing Pro Needs to Know

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It’s no wonder we’re all suffering from information overload.

Emails, instant messages, likes, tweets and texts clog our mailboxes, mind and memory.

So what’s a marketer with a message to do? How do we break through the clutter, capture consumer attention and build business for our clients and customers?

Stick to the rule of one.

Engage one audience, deliver one message and craft one call to action.

One Audience

Marketers often cast too wide a net when choosing their target market. If you want your message to resonate–narrowcast (spreading an advertising message to a select demographic). Choose one audience, (the more focused the better), know their pain points and speak their language. Don’t just speak to teachers; speak to 5th grade history teachers from the Midwest.

One Message

In his seminal book, The New Positioning, Jack Trout notes that minds hate complexity. So what’s the best way to enter minds that hate complexity? Oversimplify the message. No need to tell your entire story. As Mr. Trout says, “focus on one powerful attribute and drive it into the minds of your audience.”

One Call to Action

Whether you’re crafting an email marketing campaign, designing a print ad, or producing a video, you want your target audience to make one decision. Otherwise, they become confused and we all know how minds feel about complexity and confusion. Stick with one call to action (one simple command). And make sure its easy to find and easy to comprehend.

The bottom line, resist the temptation to overcomplicate your messaging. Trust in the simplicity and power of one and your marketing campaigns will prove much more successful.

One more thing…if you have any questions shoot me an email at sean@prguyonline.com

Cheers,

Sean
PR Guy

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Filed under Branding, Marketing

Nine Ideas to Take the Ice Bucket Challenge to the Next Level

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When Kim Kardashian took the Ice Bucket Challenge last week on Ellen, I figured it was safe to assume that the campaign had “jumped the shark.” But it’s sure been a good run. In fact, as of September 15, 2014, the campaign has raised a whopping $100 million dollars for ALS research. Not a bad haul considering that last year ALS took in $1.3 million during the same time span.

And apparently Facebook was able to rake some serious cash from the challenge as well. A recent Forbes article by Jeff Bercovic reports that “Ice Bucket Challenge videos were viewed more than 10 billion times and reached more than 440 million people.” And the more views Facebook receives, the more money they make in ad sales.

This got me thinking…How can ALS raise even more scratch in 2015 and take the Ice Bucket Challenge to the next level? Here are nine ideas that could help the program grow and prosper.

Create a Brand Identity: The Ice Bucket challenge is in serious need of a brand identity. A well-designed logo would become an iconic symbol that would visually represent the program and distinguish it in the minds of donors. The identity should be distinct yet connected to the ALS brand.

Build a Microsite: ALS should consider creating a microsite for the Ice Bucket Challenge. Wikipedia defines a microsite as “an individual web page or a small cluster of pages which are meant to function as a discrete entity within an existing website or to complement an offline activity”. The microsite’s main landing page could have its own domain name or subdomain. Microsites are easy maintain to and are a perfect solution for a campaign with a limited life cycle such as the Ice Bucket Challenge.

Secure Corporate Sponsorship: This program is ripe for multiple corporate sponsors. It would provide the right brands with abundant press, consumer affinity and significant ROI. ALS should set distinct sponsorship levels that will attract a mix of small and large corporations. They may even consider securing a title sponsor such as the “Home Depot Ice Bucket Challenge.”

Feature Bloopers: My guess is that a few ice bucket challenges have gone seriously wrong, and there is some funny footage floating around out there. Why not create a series of blooper videos? People love watching outtakes of movies and TV shows. In fact, they’re often the best part of the movie.

Get Cities and Towns Involved: ALS could launch a contest where cities and towns could compete to see who can raise the most dough and activate the largest number of participants. ALS could come up with some incentive/prize for the city or town that brings in the most cash. Winners could based on population size. Mayors could challenge rival towns to go head-to-head to see who can raise the most cash. The press love municipal rivalries so you know it would generate a ton of publicity for the participating towns as well as the challenge.

Display Window Clings on Freezer Doors: Every supermarket from the Piggly Wiggly to Wegmans sells ice. And my guess is that every supermarket chain would be happy to place a window cling on the ice stall freezer door to promote ice sales and support a good cause.

Partner with a Home Improvement Chain: Home Depot and Lowes sell buckets of all shapes and sizes. ALS should forge a partnership with one of the home improvement chains so a portion of every bucket sale goes directly to support ALS.

Create a Facebook Contest: This program is clearly a big win for Facebook. ALS should partner with Facebook to offer a prize to the Ice Bucket Challenge video that receives the most views.

Design a T-Shirt: T-shirts are walking billboards. Offer T-shirts as an incentive to donors who reach specific fundraising goals. Donors will wear the t-shirt as a badge of honor. The T-shirt would also provide great brand visibility for the corporate sponsor.

So what say you? Any ideas on how the Ice Bucket Challenge can come back bigger and better in 2015? I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas.

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Filed under Branding, Nonprofit Marketing, Public Relations, Social Media

Ice Ice Baby-How ALS Can Capitalize on the Ice Bucket Craze

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The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is hot.

In just a few short weeks, the campaign has taken the social media world by storm. The idea is simple. Take a bucket of ice water, dump it over your head, and share the video via social media. Participants then challenge others to do the same.

Just this past weekend, Kennedy clan leader and matriarch Ethel Kennedy doused herself in cold water at her Hyannis Port home. Then nominated President Obama to take the challenge during his Vineyard vacay. Other notable participants include Martha Stewart (I bet her cold water is infused with a hint of lemon), Matt Lauer, and former golfing great Greg Norman.

As a marketing guy, I’m fascinated by the viral nature of this contagious campaign. So, I went to the ALS website to learn more. Much to my surprise, there was no mention of the campaign on the ALS homepage.

This got me thinking… how can this amazing organization continue to build momentum and raise some serious scratch for their great cause? I had a few ideas and I bet you do too. So here goes …

Prominently Feature the Campaign on the Homepage: (NOTE-This post was published on 8/11. ALS began featuring the Ice Bucket Challenge on it’s homepage on 8/12)

This campaign is just about everywhere except the ALS homepage. This is truly a missed opportunity. People don’t like jumping through hoops to learn how to participate or donate. The homepage should feature an Ice Bucket Challenge banner that takes viewers to a dedicated Ice Bucket Challenge webpage.

Create a Dedicated Webpage:

A dedicated Ice Bucket Challenge webpage would serve as home base for those looking to get involved and learn more. Some ideas on what the page may include:
A series of step-by-step instructional videos:

o How to shoot your Ice Bucket Challenge video

o How to share your video via social media

o How to raise funds for ALS with your video. Provide participants with ideas and inspiration on how to raise funds for ALS with their video.

For example, encourage ice bucket participants to forward their video to friends and family via text and email and ask each recipient to give $5 to ALS (make it micro-donation–if they want to give more they’ll have the option to do so on the website).

A Prominent Donate Now Button:

Not everyone is going to want to pour a bucket of cold water over their head. Make it easy for those who just want to give with a big “donate now” button.

Gallery of Participant Videos:

People love attention. Make it easy for participants to upload their Ice Bucket video to the Ice Bucket Challenge page. Chances are, once they’re video is uploaded and their story is featured, they’ll direct their friends and family to the page. The Red Cross does a great job of this with the “Tell Your Story” campaign. The webpage features unscripted stories created and filmed by real people who’ve been helped by the Red Cross.

Create a Weekly Video Montage:

Each week the folks at ALS could create a montage of the best Ice Bucket Challenge videos. And each week, the PR team could submit the video montage, along with stories of the participants, to the media. I bet this would get a lot of play. Include a few celebs in the video and your golden.

A Thank You From a Big Wig at ALS:

People love to be involved in something big, and they love to be recognized for their efforts. A video from ALS staff member thanking participants and donors will help build trust and encourage people to continue their involvement.

A Description of How the Donations will be Used:

People want to know how their donations will be specifically used to support the organization’s efforts. And this is the perfect time to share that story. This is also a great opportunity to educate the public on ALS and the research being conducted to combat the disease.

In closing, this is just the tip of the iceberg (and yes, I realize my ideas aren’t earth shattering). But this campaign has better legs than Tina Turner-and that lady has some great gams. What say you? I’d love to hear your ideas and suggestions. How can ALS capitalize on this campaign and continue to build momentum? Let’s brainstorm.

Until next time, peace, love and powerful press.

Sean

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Filed under Nonprofit Marketing