Overwhelmed by email? Indifferent to advertising? PSA-resistant? Fearful your target audiences are feeling the same way? It’s time to up your impact.
In a world where 400 million tweets are sent each day and 15 million businesses and organizations have Facebook pages, breaking through the clutter is a challenge. Beyond getting people to open an e-newsletter, businesses and nonprofits need to make their target audiences care about what’s inside it. While a solid reputation and brand loyalty can help to increase open-rates, consistently distributing relevant, high quality content is key to success. Before you hit the send button on your next e-newsletter or sign off on a new ad campaign, take advantage of these five opportunities to make your messaging more impactful:
1. Data, data, data
Did I mention data? Telling people something is important is one thing – quantifying the level of importance is another. If you are a nonprofit facing budget cuts that threaten your ability to serve hundreds if not thousands of clients, tell people how severe the impact will be. If you are an IT company that helps small businesses protect their data against security breaches, quantify the negative impact a breach can have on the business’ bottom line. Saying ‘a security breach can cost you time and money’ isn’t as meaningful as saying ‘losing all of the data on your main server can cost $X and X hours in lost work time.’
2. Relate to your audience
As a community-based nonprofit, what makes your donors tick? Why do people donate time and money to support your cause? Consider sharing a short anecdote, video excerpt or testimonial that will pull at people’s heartstrings. Nonprofits do great work but people need to feel a strong connection to a cause before they will take action.
As a for-profit business, how are you able to develop long-lasting client relationships? What ‘seals the deal’ when it comes to securing new clients? This is the information you want to share and leverage as a business growth tool.
3. Get creative
Nonprofit’s annual appeal letters are a great opportunity to be creative and push the boundaries (within reason). The nature of the beast is that countless nonprofits are sending virtual and hard copy annual appeal letters at the exact same time. It is easy for supporters to rack up a small collection of appeal letters in just a couple of weeks. Unfortunately, they can all start to blend together. Whether it is a creative mailing package, multi-channel electronic campaign or one poignant email with a suprising twist, dig deep to find ways to stand out from the crowd.
Depending on the industry, for-profits face a greater challenge when it comes to being creative – how to be creative and compliant. Whether it’s the way your company packages its information or identifying unique opportunities to demonstrate value and impact, take full advantage of timely and cost-effective ways to set your brand apart from the competition.
4. Stand out in unexpected places
A fellow marketer recently got my gears turning when he advised a group of nonprofits to ‘stand out in unexpected places.’ While extremely logical, it became clear to me how many people opt to create marketing that follows the crowd rather than taking advantage of this golden opportunity. Perhaps it’s time to move your annual meeting to the aquarium or run your automotive ads in the home and garden section. Start by thinking about the places that your target audiences congregate – be they online or in person – and those at which they would least expect to encounter your brand.
Focusing your marketing messages is a two part process – there is focusing on one crystal clear concept or theme and then there is focusing on what is most important to your target audiences. Businesses and nonprofits alike often have a deluge of great information to share, be it about products, programs, services, clients, staff, and the list goes on. While all of this information is important, it’s time to take a step back and determine who it is important to. Allow target audiences to focus on what is most important to them and make it a priority to inform people without overwhelming them.
In a world where content is king, generating high-quality, impactful marketing that drives people to take action and positively impacts an organization’s bottom line is key to success. For tips on generating top-notch online marketing content that sets your business or nonprofit apart, check out our blog post on 10 characteristics of great online marketing content.