They are buzz words. Catch words. The pair of words of the year:
Non-profit organizations (or not-for-profit, as some organizations are saying) need to learn how to use this concept right now. They need it as much as – or even more than – for-profit businesses.
NPOs thrive on attracting and keeping donors. Nowadays, said donors are researching various causes and charities before donating. They study theirfavorite cause with an eye toward getting the best use out of every dollar they give. If you give the donors what they want, more information rather than only appeals, you’ll see your responses rise.
What is it then?
This explanation, from the Content Marketing Institute, says it best:
Basically, content marketing is the art of communicating with your customers and prospects without selling. It is non-interruption marketing. Instead of pitching your products or services, you are delivering information that makes your buyer [a clearly defined audience] moreintelligent. The essence of this content strategy is the belief that if we, as businesses, deliver consistent, ongoing valuable information to buyers, they ultimately reward us with their business and loyalty. (From Content Marketing Institute, 2014)
If you substitute “non-profit organizations” for “businesses” you’ll still have the same message. Great content – such as articles, case studies or the like – educates your donors. You know who you want to attract: those who believe in your organization. They are your “clearly defined audience.” Such writing gives them the information they want in order to decide whether to donate to yourorganization or not.
But, we DO educate our donors!
Yes, in a one way, you do. You let them know your mission. About how much your organization helps their favorite cause. About what is still needed. About why they need to give to your organization. You let them know where their dollars are going. What you’re doing with the funds. And you do it with an appeal attached to each letter, newsletter, brochure and piece of email they receive.
Donors want more
Your mission statement isn’t enough anymore. Donors (like everyone else) are hungry. They want ongoing information. They want to know more than what your organization stands for. They want to know the overall reasons for sticking with you.
For example, just today the World Health Organization announced that every year 7 million people die of air pollution. Yes, 7,000,000. Now, you could say, “This is why we work toward cleaning the air. But, we can’t do it alone. We need your help.”
That isn’t what those donors want in their articles, in their case studies. They want information about the air pollution. They want to know why 7 million diefrom it.
- Who it affects
- What it is
- When it’s the worst
- Where it is
- Why it’s been allowed to go on for so long
- How to do something about it
Content marketing is necessary
if you want to attract new donors and
keep the donors you already have
This is what content marketing is. It’s giving your donors the information that they want to read, that they want to learn. It’s marketing without the overt appeals. It’s information, sure and clear. When you give them what they want online, they’ll gladly respond to your appeals in other forms.
What kind of content marketing are you doing? Let me hear from you!