This article is from my other website (still in development) where I tell stories of people’s lives. See http://mylifeaudio.com .
Note: MyLifeAudio.Com will always work within the budgets of associations and nonprofits. In some cases, we will provide services at cost.
I wrote an article addressing marketing for businesses. In essence, I suggested that businesses need to establish a personal relationship with the customer. I stated that people buy from people, not businesses.
It’s the same for associations and nonprofits.
Polls routinely show a level of mistrust with a variety of institutions. The inevitable problem is showing a return for dollars invested. Everyone in association and nonprofit circles understands this.
I’m often urged to become a member of associations at costs ranging from a small fee to several hundred dollars a year. The bottom-line question has to be why?
It’s obvious that I can’t afford to be a member of everything so I pick carefully.
I briefly joined a national association of communicators and attended their conference. It was clear that this was a collection of people who knew each other; it was like entering a private party.
The presentations at the conference rehashed old and tired strategies. The benefits of membership escaped me.
What would have happened if a senior member of the association came to me and passionately explained why my membership was important and what participation would mean for me my organization.
Possibly I would have been impressed with the enthusiasm of the individual as he or she explained how important membership was and the benefits bestowed. Possibly I would have seen possibilities beyond the conference.
But that didn’t happen and I dropped the membership.
Nonprofits face the same delimina. I can give my money to an entity and certainly someone would explain in written materials or a website what would be done with my gift.
But once again, I can’t afford to give to every cause so I’m selective.
I met the executive director of a shelter for women leaving prison. She explained her comprehensive services and the impact they had on the lives of the women seeking services and the impact on their children (80 percent were mothers).
Her passion for her role was evident. Her command of data showing the effect of dollars donated was precise.
I gave a substantial abound of money based on that passion and illustrations of cost effectiveness.
An Internet Based Strategy
Not everyone has the luxury of face-to-face meetings. Today we conduct business via the Internet.
If we want people to provide funds or services or membership, we need to look them straight in the eye (literally or figuratively) and give them good reasons. We need to display our passion. We need to be in command of the facts and benefits.
This needs to be done through an audio or video recording on a website to establish the personal relationship necessary. We need to convince. We need to be genuine. We need to be sincere.
We can’t do that in a brochure and we can’t do that through written materials on a website. We have to speak from the heart while “looking” into their eyes.
Best, Len Sipes.