these videos are really good

I have not generally been a big fan of nonprofit videos. They have historically ranked high on the suck-o-meter. If these entries in the DoGooder awards are any indication, all that may have changed. Congrats to all! P.S. Vote for “Follow the Frog!”  

Good content can sell anything

Picking up on Alia’s theme, here’s another stunning example of brilliant marketing content. In this case it’s a junker of an old Toyota Camry. But by the time you finish with this man’s masterpiece, you’ll be checking your account balance to see if you can buy it! Next time you have to fundraise for something… Read more

Good vibrations are part of your job

Alia and I both have music on the brain, maybe because we are both still recovering from an amazing concert by Liz Longley, my favorite singer-songwriter in the world. Yesterday, Alia likened learning to communicate to the process of learning to play music. In the beginning it’s all rules and awkwardness and following the steps, but… Read more

Theory and Practice

Learning the notes required to play a chord is theory. Putting your fingers on the frets and feeling the strings pressing into your hands is practice. You can learn the chord, but until you merge that learning with practice you’ve really accomplished nothing. The same goes for fundraising and communications. We can engage in the… Read more

Is your cause more boring then a coffee mug?

The organizations I work for do incredible — and often heroic — things. They risk their personal safety to document human rights abuses in Syria. They stand up to companies like Koch Industries and Monsanto who corrupt the political process. They mobilize hundreds of thousands of passionate birders to provide scientific data on climate change. Interesting… Read more

It’s not easy being lean

The Lean Startup is a movement that challenges entrepreneurs to build and run their companies in a new way. It emphasizes making things that customers actually value and want, which minimizes wasted effort and expense. The same principles can and should apply to non profits. Anyone who has worked with Sea Change knows we always… Read more

Be a high roller for a day

My colleague and mentor Katya Andresen often smartly advises non profit fundraisers to “Be their donors for a day.”  This means making a donation and seeing for yourself what systems/communications are in place (or not in place) to make that donor experience incredible. I want to encourage everyone reading this post to take her advice one… Read more

Does your video rock?

Most non-profit videos rank far below giggling babies, the numa numa kid or mentos-in-diet-coke backyard geysers for engagement value. But that’s exactly why the ones that actually evoke feelings and inspire action are so precious. Every year, See3, NTEN and others celebrate that rarity of rarities — great video by cause organizations — in the… Read more