Content Discovery Smackdown: Hootsuite vs. Buffer vs. KloutContent Marketing Minds: Ingredients of the Tastiest Content [Nutrition Label]From the Corn Field to the Digital Era: Content Marketing Starts with TrustContent Marketing: Is 2014 Really Shaping Up to Be the Year of Video?
Your Customers Aren’t Listening! How to Create Consumer Dialogue that Converts4 Tools for Nonprofit Social Listening and Reputation ManagementThe Promising Role of Social Listening in Treating Health IssuesThe Importance of Social Listening for Brands
- Public Relations
Facebook Testing a Way for Users to Buy Products on the Platform7 Website Tips to Attract More Shoppers to Your PagesHow eCommerce, Augmented and Virtual Reality Will Redefine the Retail ExperienceSearch Query Analysis to Increase eCommerce Website Conversions
- Content Marketing
Technology & Data
Social Startups: Bizible Connects All the Dots from Marketing Contributions to RevenueCreating the Perfect Profile for Your Social Media Marketing EffortUsing GPS and Localization for Social AnalyticsAnalytics and Prospect Intel: Discovering Your Ideal Prospect
- Big Data
- Tech & Innovation
3 Security Risks You’re Taking Every Day While Using Social MediaShould the President Have the Power to "Pull the Plug" on the Internet?How Safe is Your WordPress Website From Hackers and Other Malicious Attacks?
- Software & Tools
- Small Business
- Social Organization
Celebrating the Grand Re-Launch of Social Media Today! SBH Podcast Episode 8Why Should You Care If Your Employees Are Thought Leaders?Beyond Engagement: The Art of Managing Social-Media Risk in Employee Advocacy
Why All-in-One Social Media Management Systems Don't Cut It for Social Customer ServiceWhat You Should Know About Customer, Digital, and Contextual ExperienceSurging into Q3: How to Make It Better Than Q2Is How You Serve Your Customers Costing You Business?
Join us September 15th in Atlanta for The Employee Advocacy Summit and learn how to unleash the power of your employees.
Post your event here and we'll share it with our community. If one of our members is featured, we'll promote as well on their profile.
- Marketplace & Webinars
The SMT Marketplace
Your resource for exclusive content and insights from Social Media Today, and opportunities to reach our community of professionals.
The Social Business Book Club brings you books, discussions, and insights from today's to business thought leaders.
Join interactive talks and and panel discussions with leading thinkers and practitioners on social media and networked business, or browse the catalogue of recorded sessions - all completely free.
Reach Social Media Today's community of marketing and communications professionals in an editor-approved context with a native advertising package.
The Biggest Content Marketing Mistake Nonprofits Make
Posted on November 13th 2013
The Content Marketing Institute defines content marketing as the act of “creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire, and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience – with the objective of driving profitable customer action.” For nonprofits, that translate into a powerful, cost-effective method of acquiring new donors.
Many nonprofits have jumped on the content marketing bandwagon – publishing blog posts, videos and other rich media – which is great! However, one tiny misunderstanding about the nature of effective content marketing can sink those efforts before they even begin.
One of the worst things a nonprofit can do is simply transition their existing promotional content to digital mediums, and hoping that it will attract new donors. This shows little regard for the varied online audiences that your nonprofit currently has and can attract in the future.
The Three Audiences
When it comes to content, a nonprofit has three core audiences:
- non-donors who don’t know your organization
- non-donors who know your organization
Each audience is looking for and expects certain content from your organization. These three groups correspond perfectly to the stages of the donor funnel:
- prospecting (above the funnel)
- cultivation/asking (in the funnel)
- stewardship (below the funnel)
Nonprofits tend to be bottom-heavy in terms of their content: lots of cultivation and asking content (flyers, brochures, annual reports, newsletters, etc.) but little in the way of prospecting content. The good news is if you master effective content marketing, your current stewards will also draw value from that content.
Educational Content Wins Prospects
When it comes to attracting new donors, it’s important to understand that those individuals aren’t necessarily searching for nonprofits to donate to. They’re searching for the answers to their questions: What are early signs of alzheimer’s? How can I feed a family of five for under $10 without sacrificing nutrition? How can I get my child interested in reading? What can I do to avoid the flu in the workplace?
When your content is educational, you have a much greater chance of attracting potential donors to your organization’s website. Once they’re there, your existing cultivation/asking content can kick in and hopefully convert them into donors. Here’s a different way of looking at the donor funnel:
- prospecting (content marketing)
- cultivation/asking (existing promotional content)
- stewardship (donor communications)
By mapping content in this manner, you can see how someone who has never heard of your organization can organically convert into a supporter. While existing promotional and donor communications content can take a digital form, the bulk of your content marketing efforts should be focused on acquisition. Don’t flip your donor funnel! Create content that attracts, not pushes. Your current and prospective donors will thank you for it.
We Want To Know Where You Stand on Content Marketing
If you have three minutes to spare, please take our Nonprofit Content Marketing Benchmark Survey >>