Posts Tagged ‘Charity’


Facebook Sponsored Social Media Stories for Non Profits

Facebook Sponsored Social Media Stories for Non Profits

Facebook recently introduced a new feature whereby it allows users to share links to articles, blog posts and other web content under the title of “sponsored stories”. While this seems like a way for many companies to try to syndicate and socially share its content, the authenticity of voice seems very contrived when the stories being promoted are about new innovations in home roofing. There lies a tremendous opportunity for Non Profits and Charities to utilize this feature however. Non profits and charities have a unique ability to use social media to share their voice.

Due to the very nature of the work that they they do, Non Profits inevitably have tremendous stories to share but often not enough avenues or channels in which to find a wide enough audience that those stories have impact. There have been no shortage of social media success stories for Non Profits so I want to focus on how I think that Facebook’s Sponsored Stories can specifically be used. Continue Reading…


Starbucks, Obama & The Halo Effect

Starbucks, Obama & The Halo Effect

I’ve got to admit that I am really impressed with the way that Starbucks has been able to utilize the “halo effect” of the American Presidential election and specifically the renewal of promise brought by now President Barack Obama in a way that is not gimicky or based on novelty. Starbucks has effectively been able to bring a network of its customers together through a combination of online/offline marketing efforts like the I Voted or now Pledge 5 programs. At the same time the company has built much brand equity by discretely attaching themselves to all that Americans (and the rest of the world) have come to hope for in Barack Obama.

While it is obviously the execution of any marketing program that makes it worth doing, with these two campaigns Starbucks has been able to utilize the halo effect from Obama as the reason to call its consumers to action and in doing so has been able to use the Internet to connect the brand to its consumers and consumers to other consumers through their ideas, ideals and sacrifices. Continue Reading…


Swag Is A Dirty 4 Letter Word

Swag Is A Dirty 4 Letter Word

One of the areas where companies inevitably spend money but see absolutely no return is in the area of company clothing and trade show give-aways. The company clothing for your employees at trade shows is ok, so is producing some t-shirts or ball caps with your logo but please do not try to convince me that giving away crap (and let’s be honest for the most part it is crap) with your logo on it does anything for your business. I say this fully cognisant of the fact that it absolutely boosts team spirit to give your employees some logo’d clothing but in terms of appealing to consumers partners and as importantly investors, free spending in this area can actually be detrimental and be a sign of either ego or just poor decision making. Don’t take my word for it, Mark Cuban recently wrote on his blog “Never ever ever buy swag. A sure sign of failure for a start-up is when someone sends me logo polo shirts. If your people are at shows and in public it’s ok to buy for your own folks, but if you really think someone is going to wear your polo you sent them in public, you are mistaken and have no idea how to spend your money.”

In fact, I actually think that in the economic times we are facing companies that can be creative with the whole idea of “swag” – taking it from pointless gimmicks to something that actually promotes your brand – can be huge winners. If you feel the need to hand out branded items why not be creative and at the same time do some good? My idea for you is very easy to implement, actually captures leads for you (something your hoodie sweatshirt isn’t doing) and at the same time is a way to give the same $ you are spending to a worthwhile cause.

Changing The Game – Be Charitable & Do More Business

Instead of whatever crappy gift you were going to get branded – let’s take a budget of $15 per item – get some really funky business cards (check out some creative ones here or here) or some other wallet size item and have it custom printed with some info about a charity of your choice and a URL to visit. Give the card holder notice that by visiting the URL (set a custom URL like so people know this is specific to the fed you gave them) and upon submitting their contact info (or whatever you seem necessary) you will donate $2 to the charity referenced on the card. Give each card a unique code to ensure it is entered only once and be sure to put up one of those fancy charity thermometers showing just how much money has been raised to date. You may also want to be generous and start off your fund with an initial donation which will have the bonus of people assuming many before them have participated.

The total cost to you of a promtion like this is actually probably lower than any other swag and you accomplish the business goal of gathering leads and building your business. Although it might be cool to think of thousands of people waking around in your branded gear, in reality it is not going to happen. Spend your money on something that will actually grow your business and at the same time will prove you have a staunchly business mind but a generous human heart.

Oh ya and if you really “must” have someone showoff your branded gear you may as well check out girlinyourshirt – at least that way you get the satisfaction of knowing your t-shirt gets some love (heck I’d love your shirt for $75 too).