Social Marketing De-Mystified

Lori Halley 07 March 2007 0 comments

Marketing is the selling of services, ideas or products. While traditional marketing shifts the buying patterns of products by consumers, social marketing shifts ideas, attitudes and behaviours of individuals in a society. With social marketing, the emphasis is on learning what people want/need rather than trying to persuade them to buy what is already being produced. How can you get started: What do you need to ask yourself?

Marketing Guidelines for Non-Profits - An Overview

It’s clear that non-profits with strong and recognizable brands reinforce their organization’s reputation and authority in the community. While a brand establishes the identity of the cause or the organization with a concrete image or campaign, marketing is about “selling” the offer. Marketing communicates an organization’s offer to fill gaps in society by way of its services to specialized audiences. Speaking to a specific audience with a coherent message in a memorable way at the right time and place is what marketing is all about.
 
What is Branding?

A brand creates strength and unity between every point of contact and communication between an organization and its internal and external audiences. A brand is more than its logo or name recognition. The brand is what supporters, clients and associates see, feel and remember each time they have contact with your organization. A brand should grow out of an organization’s mission and goals; it should have input from all stakeholders. The stakeholders are people who have a concern about the issue. They could include volunteers (who provide the services), staff (who organized and train them), boards of directors (who oversee the organization’s direction and long-term suitability), the referral sources (other service providers, hospitals, doctors, nurses, chaplains, social workers) and the end-user.

What’s Social Marketing?

Marketing is the selling of services, ideas or products. While marketing shifts the buying patterns of products by consumers, social marketing shifts ideas, attitudes and behaviours of individuals in a society. The traditional marketing strategies used for selling products (e.g. cars, running shoes or beer) can be applied to selling the cause-related services and products (e.g. research, personal aids, classes, training). With social marketing, the emphasis is on learning what people want/need rather than trying to persuade them to buy what is already being produced.

Benefits of Effective and Meaningful Marketing

•    Attracts loyal stakeholders to the organization’s objectives, mission, values and support for fundraising goals
•    Distinguishes your organization from competing causes
•    Creates strong loyalty among supporters and volunteers
•    Reaches out and engages with interested parties
•    Declares direction in times of change
•    Develops a strong presence in the media

In contrast, an organization with weak marketing faces the challenge of being known by those who need them and their services.

How to get started: What do you need to ask yourself?

•    How are you marketing now?
•    What are your challenges?
•    Do you know your strengths?
•    Do you know your key messages?
•    Do you know your audience?
•    What venues / tools have you used?
•    Which ones worked, which not; how do you know this?
•    Have you set a budget to work with?

Towards a marketing plan…

Marketing is a process—it is developed over time and will address stakeholders in a variety of media and formats.  Investing in the research and development of a marketing strategy will provide a clear definition of how and when to use your resources effectively. It will link the commonalties between how your organization is perceived and how it wants to be perceived. Properly communicating your organization’s offer will allow your clients and service partners a better picture of your organization and how you can help them.

This article is contributed by Heather Mains from Duegood (www.duegood.com) – a social marketing and communications design firm

 



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Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot] Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Posted by Lori Halley [Engaging Apricot]

Published Wednesday, 07 March 2007 at 7:26 PM

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