Nonprofit Marketing Trends to Help You Prioritize
Marketing is an essential part of fundraising for your nonprofit. In other words, if you want to raise money, people in your community have to know about your organization. Because everything changes fast, part of marketers’ jobs is to stay up to date with what is happening. In my position as chief marketer for our portfolio brands, I spend a lot of time learning what's new, as well as getting information on trends and new strategies.
Therefore, today I wanted to share information that global marketers are doing that your nonprofit should know. As you know, there's a lot of disruption and innovation occurring. Nonprofits that take advantage of trends and ideas do the best when it comes to expanding their supporter base and fundraising. By the way, if you want to know where not to spend your precious fundraising dollars, check out a recent article about five marketing money-wasters.
A recently published report by Hubspot called "Not Another State of Marketing Report" informs readers based on information from 3,400 global marketers. A few of their findings include the following:
- 70% of organizations invest in content marketing
- 60% of marketers say that content marketing is essential to what they do
- Unsurprisingly, video is the No. 1 form of content marketing media
Marketing Strategies for Social Media
In the Hubspot report, one of the findings that stood out at me, especially since I have a passion for social media, is that 74% of businesses invest in social media. I'll add here that the top marketing activity most of our fundraising partners do is social media. Furthermore, if you're fundraising, then you've probably heard countless times about personalizing your messages to your audience. However, the same holds true for social media. When you promote, make sure you're on the right platforms and reaching the right target audiences.
As you imagine, there are some places on social media where you want to be sure that your nonprofit is appearing and engaging. Facebook is vital, in my opinion, for any nonprofit, as is the use of Facebook groups. But as the report notes, there's an opportunity for organizations in the use of Instagram, and even Twitter. Those three are the top three social sites, but I will share a tip about our success. Pinterest has been great for us in promoting our social enterprises, and it didn't take too much of the time for the marketing team. See if it works for you.
Email Marketing Continues to Work
Hubspot reports that email marketing is still a solid investment. As noted in the report, there's a lot of noise in the social space. On any given day, your supporters get exposed to thousands of messages and advertisements begging for their attention. So, email is one of the ways to cut through the noise. Marketers in the report said they experienced email engagement during the last 12 months. Therefore, email still works.
I’ll share with you that we also do a lot of email marketing, focusing on segmentation and conversions. While it makes a lot of sense to ensure that you have a broad approach to your nonprofit marketing efforts, one of those strategies should still be email marketing. The reality is that it still works, which is why we’ve invested in a CRM system to improve our overall conversion practices, including email. Also remember, we live in the digital age, so everything is measurable, including email marketing. Therefore, work to maximize the performance of this old school approach to reaching your audiences.
Conversational Marketing Can Help You Focus Better
As you probably know, artificial intelligence is already in the nonprofit sector. And, while there's a bit of stress because people understand its power, they still don't understand how to work along-side it. Still, there are a lot of great opportunities for your nonprofit to incorporate AI into your marketing plans. As Hubspot reported, 45% of businesses use bots, particularly when customers need customer support through chats with bots or messaging.
Conversational marketing is an excellent opportunity for your nonprofit, and there are several ways you can achieve it. For instance, we reach out to our partners through text, and we have also experimented with live chats. As you know, you want to be wherever your supporters are on social, email, and yes, even in conversational marketing. If you want to spend your time focusing on what's important, have AI bots take over some of your load. For instance, how about creating a Facebook bot in less than 30 minutes?
Of course, there’s a lot more great information that you’ll find in the Hubspot report. However, the ideas in this article should help you get focused on what to prioritize for your nonprofit marketing efforts.
Kristy Fontelera is a creative professional in corporate and nonprofit social media advertising and brand strategy. As the chief marketing officer at Funds2Orgs and Elsey Enterprises, she works with a suite of global fundraising brands and manages national campaigns for her clients. She hosts a monthly webinar with Funds2Orgs, teaching nonprofits how to make an impact with their social media strategy. Kristy is a passionate individual that loves nothing more than to help others make an impact in their market and the world.
Kristy also contributes monthly to her NonProfit PRO blog, “Marketing IRL.”