“Help me help you”; or is that help you help me?

What do you know?  What do I know?  What does anyone know?  No, this is not a philosophy blog…

 

I’m launching this “philanthrophile” blog in the hope it may help you to more effectively market and communicate about ideas and causes, and in the selfish hope that it will help me as I try to support some important and needy causes – like hospice, hunger and troubled youth.  I pledge to try to make the topic of each post clear at the outset so you can decide if you want to read on or press delete.  You can decide after reading the bullets below if you’re interested in the same general stuff, or not.

 

You may know my backstory.  Career in healthcare marketing and strategy, with a thread of innovation on behalf of consumers.  I’ve worked in advertising agencies, public relations agencies and been a marketing/strategy exec in two very large organizations.  Then three years ago, I retired to care for my now 92-year-old Dad, who is something of a walking miracle given the three heart attacks, two open heart operations and two strokes that he has survived quite nicely.  My jump off the corporate freeway has not quelled my appetite for marketing, or for community service.

 

So, this is my “Captain’s log” (apologies to Trekkies) about what I’m exploring and learning in my latest iteration:  pro bono marketing capability developer for selected causes.  Since philanthropy is a new application of my professional skills, I am on a binge, drinking in everything I can get my hands on.

 

Here are a few examples of things I’m interested in:

 

  • The philanthropy sector’s interest in systematic approaches to innovation, which look an awful lot like the innovation/new product development model my team and I created at my last corporate gig
  • How small, unsophisticated not-for-profits can improve their website’s “natural search” rankings (cheap and basic Search Engine Optimization techniques) as well as improve useability
  • Ideas about the life cycle of a donor, and how one develops a relationship from the first gift… through more major contributions (Customer Relationship Management)
  • The power of story — through words, photos and video story telling – as a means of engaging constituents and encouraging donations
  • Innovative partnerships between business people and philanthropic causes, and efforts of MBA programs to offer management guidance on a pro bono basis (such as the Kellogg Action Lab)
  • Digital communications opportunities, from website functionality to blogging, to e-newsletters, social networking and online engagement
  • Evaluation and tracking of online campaigns (particularly web analytics), as well as benchmarking studies
  • The emergence of donor marketplaces such as NetworkForGood
  • The intersection of traditional public relations and online marketing techniques

 

As you can see, my interests are about a mile wide and an inch deep.  As I pass along new nuggets, I’m hoping you’ll share what you’re seeing and learning.

 

And if you’d prefer not to ever, ever see this blog again – no harm, no foul.  Just unsubscribe!

 

As for schedule, I’ll blog when I think I have something worth sharing.  Let me know if it gets to be too much.  Thanks for playing!

 

Quote for the day:  “While the range of issues they can support is almost limitless, the number of tools that philanthropists have at their disposal is rather small. They have really 7 things to bring to the table: money, knowledge, time, expertise, connections, patience, and independence.”  Lucy Bernholz, Philanthropy 2173 (a favorite blog)

 

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