Limited Time Offer: Save 30% on PRO with code GETRESULTS »

Real-World Education for Modern Marketers

Join Over 600,000 Marketing Professionals

Start here!
N E X T
Text:  A A

Think and Act Like a Nonprofit to Deepen Connections and Build Relationships

by Roger Sametz  |  
May 12, 2009
  |  4,307 views

For decades, the prevailing wisdom was that nonprofits should learn from for-profit enterprises how to "get their act together" and become "more businesslike." And nonprofits did learn.

Many have embraced best practices in branding, marketing, service delivery, money management, and leadership. They have also learned how to keep different business models running simultaneously: Generating earned income from sales requires different messages, communications, operations, and skills than does garnering philanthropic contributions, whereas generating funds through sponsorships, foundations, or partnerships each presents different challenges and opportunities.

To be successful in all these endeavors has required nonprofits to develop approaches and skills—particularly in communication and branding—that for-profits can learn from.

Connect on a deeper level

A nonprofit's mission and vision give people a reason to participate—and to believe—that's deeper and longer lasting than any specific offering. The value proposition goes beyond fulfilling a tangible or tactical need ("I need A to do B") to fulfill an emotional need. And that connection, when nurtured and sustained, engenders loyalty, creates advocates and ambassadors, and builds relationships that transcend transactions. Customers, participants, board members, and donors feel they are part of a shared enterprise.


For a business, forging this sort of deeper connection can provide market differentiation, create a corps of enthusiastic advocates, and help distance offerings from (dreaded) commodities. (Price is less of an issue if you really believe in a company and what it's selling.)

There are different ways to build this connection: Customers can identify with your mission, they might want to be aligned with what your brand means, or they might seek to be included in your culture—or a combination of the above. Apple, Starbucks, Volvo, and Ikea have benefited by creating such alignments. Forty years ago, Tom's of Maine introduced toothpaste that had meaning far beyond its utility, and user believers became a huge unpaid sales force.

Focus on relationships, not transactions


Sign up for free to read the full article.Read the Full Article

Membership is required to access the full version of this how-to marketing article ... don't worry though, it's FREE!

WANT TO READ MORE?
SIGN UP TODAY ...
IT'S FREE!

We will never sell or rent your email address to anyone. We value your privacy. (We hate spam as much as you do.) See our privacy policy.

Sign in with one of your preferred accounts below:

Loading...

Roger Sametz is president and CEO of Sametz Blackstone Associates, a Boston-based brand consultancy that integrates brand, editorial, and digital strategy with design and digital media. Sametz Blackstone collaborates with a wide range of academic, cultural, community-focused, and corporate clients.

LinkedIn: Roger Sametz

Rate this  

Overall rating

  • This has a 1 star rating
  • This has a 1 star rating
  • This has a 1 star rating
  • This has a 1 star rating
  • This has a 1 star rating
2 rating(s)

Add a Comment

Comments

  • by atul chatterjee Wed May 13, 2009 via web

    I would like to read examples when going through an article like this. If the examples are welded to theory nothing like it. Thanks

MarketingProfs uses single
sign-on with Facebook, Twitter, Google and others to make subscribing and signing in easier for you. That's it, and nothing more! Rest assured that MarketingProfs: Your data is secure with MarketingProfs SocialSafe!