Katya Andresen, the author of Robin Hood Marketing, was just one of the "9 Minds On Marketing" I interviewed for my newly published ebook....

One of her points really resonated for me this week, so I thought I'd share that snippet from my essay (entitled, "Marketing A Just Cause"):
Be Passionately Dispassionate
Non-profit marketers, like corporate marketers, tend to have "mission myopia." They are so passionate about their cause that it has become hard for them to even conceive of other people not understanding the earth-shattering importance of it as well. Still, they need to get over that, and see the bigger picture.
The truth is, for a marketer in any arena, there is a lot of competition for a prospect's dollars. There are 1.9 million registered nonprofits in the world today with 100 new non-profits forming per day. And, we all know how many ways we can choose to spend our money as consumers–the word would be "zillions," if it existed.
So, with all those choices for good causes that need contributions, what's a marketer to do? According to Katya, they should: "Think in terms of customers, not converts. For our customers, a shared worldview is not a prerequisite to action."
Nonprofit marketers have to see beyond their mission myopia and dispassionately identify the one simple thing they want to convince people to do toward their larger cause. In one case, the answer to raising awareness of the HIV/AIDS virus in Cambodia was not some long-drawn-out educational effort to sway the points of view of sex workers and their clients.
Instead, it was the straightforward, action-inspiring introduction and promotion of a high-quality but inexpensive condom with the western-sounding, status-positioning brand name, "Number One."
Who'd have thought? Smart nonprofit marketers, that's who.

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Counteracting Mission Myopia

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image of Andrea Learned
Andrea Learned is a noted author, blogger, and expert on gender-based consumer behavior. Her current focus is on sustainability from both the consumer and the organizational perspectives. Andrea contributes to the Huffington Post and provides sustainability-focused commentary for Vermont Public Radio.