Three Secret Weapons for Better Communication
Effective communication never consists of words alone. There must be a purpose behind those words that calls an audience to action. The result of this action is, ideally, identical to what we call a communicator’s objective. Simply put, your objective is the goal or purpose you hope to achieve with your audience as a result of the delivery of your message. A computer sales rep wants to sell a computer, a teacher wants the students to learn their state capitals, and a safety manager wants the workers to avoid injury.
How to Motivate Your Board to Raise More Money
This is a tricky subject, and a difficult one for many nonprofits to address: How can you get your board to raise more money on your behalf? I’m not talking about "show boards," those boards of directors that you asked people to be on just so you could attach their name to your cause (usually well known local people)... you knew what you were getting into there, and it wasn’t having the board doing lots of work.
Nine Essential Steps for a Killer Kickstarter Campaign
These days, more Kickstarter campaigns are achieving success than we can keep track of. The iPhone-friendly Pebble watch earned $7.6 million more than its $100,000 goal. And the Galileo iPhone platform closed its Kickstarter campaign at $702,000, far surpassing its $100,000 goal.
Not to mention, Kickstarter recently reported it has raised $200 million from over 2 million backers.
Social Media Secrets for a Sold-Out Event
You know that feeling when you see something really cool in action? You see it unfold right before you. Last fall, I had the incredible opportunity of attending in NYC and saw social media and online marketing used so smartly to sell out an event with zero seats to spare and create an enormous amount of buzz for next year’s event. This is what every business needs to know about using social media for a sell-out event, including getting the word out in the first place, strategies for engaging your audience, and how to create momentum after the event.
Facebook Advertising: Five Things You Don't Know (& Should)
As my company has been managing pay-per-click advertising since the dawn of the medium, I've been thrilled to turn its attention to the Facebook advertising platform's amazing targeting abilities. We stumbled a lot at first, however, and went through millions of dollars of testing before we learned to walk (and finally run). Here are the five biggest lessons we have learned about using Facebook ads.
Can Online Video Usher in a New Age of Empathy?
Almost 100 years have passed since the first regularly scheduled international flight. It’s been 85 years since the first international telephone call, and more than 30 years since the United Nations standardized passports. While these advances served to connect countries to one another, they have struggled to produce a true sense of global citizenship. To me, global citizenship means identifying with one another as people with a common experience before subdividing by other factors like nationality, religion, or political beliefs. What will finally create empathy and understanding between a young man in Tokyo, a middle-aged woman in Dallas, and a teenager in Sao Paulo? Not politics. Not religion. But media.
The Key To Engaging Your Audience? Hijacking Emotion
The default to emotion is part of the human condition.
To better appreciate the role of emotion and what it allows an audience to do, we need to take a brief detour into evolutionary biology. The human brain can be understood as three separate brains working in tandem, if not completely integrated with each other. The primitive brain and the limbic brain collectively make up the limbic system, which governs emotion. Within the limbic system, there is a structure called the amygdala, which leaders need to understand.
Six Things You Don't Know About Google+
Here's one of my current favorite hobbies: I sit down with potential clients, toss out a reference to Google+ and wait for the inevitable reply--that "it’s never going to make it" or "we don’t believe in it." Then I slowly shake my head, take a breath, and reveal what Google isn’t telling you about the importance of their social push.
1. It’s not a social network.
10 Foolproof Ways to Earn Your Landing Page Visitors' Trust
Landing pages are a critical tool for meeting your ever-increasing lead generation goals. Actually, only 8 percent of marketers reported that dedicated landing pages were ineffective, according to MarketingSherpa's 2011 Landing Page Optimization Benchmark Report. I'm not sure what those 8 percent are doing, but the effectiveness of landing pages for the other 92 percent of marketers hinges on one component that isn't often discussed -- visitors have to trust you enough to give away their personal information on your landing page forms to obtain your offer.
Museums Want to Entertain You
Once, art museums were like fortresses. They were built of stone atop forbidding mountains of stairs. Today, museums might be nestled under glass pyramids, or sheathed in undulating ripples of stainless steel, or built to look like boats and the hood of a sports car. A city in China has plans for a comic book museum that's shaped like a speech bubble. Just as the buildings have changed, so have the exhibits inside them. Today museums must compete with a host of entertainment options that didn't exist a generation ago.
Nine Principles for Great Branding by Design
We all know great design has a critical role to play in building a great brand. But how do we go about making that happen? I recently had the opportunity to speak to three top designers about that very question: Robert Brunner, founder of the design shop Ammunition and author of Do You Matter: How Great Design Will Make People Love Your Company; Joe Doucet, founder of Joe Doucet Studio; and David Hill, vice president of design at Lenovo and author of the Design Matters blog. Through these conversations, it became clear that the link between design and branding is important, and that having a top design team is to crucial to having a winning brand.
Here's what I learned:
Brand Entertainment Needs Better Measurement|
Fashion Star, a heavily promoted primetime launch, pairs fashion designers with celebrity mentors in a competition to lure the attention--and the purchase orders--of department store buyers. Designs that make the cut are available immediately at one of the show’s three commercial partners--Macy’s, H&M, or Saks Fifth Avenue. With the clothes selling out before West Coast viewers even get a chance to check out the week’s collection, it appears the formula is working. And while this won’t satisfy those nostalgic for Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom, it leaves no doubt that branded entertainment has entered a new realm.
I’m Ready for My Close-Up, Mr. Puccini
When you walk to your seat in a movie theater for one of the "Live in HD" broadcasts of the Metropolitan Opera, your experience begins with the sound: the instantly recognizable, immediately comforting hum of instruments tuning and the audience stirring, piped in live from the Met itself. I heard it when I stepped into the Murdock Theater in Wichita, KS last November to attend the screening of Philip Glass's Satyagraha, part of a season in which I traveled throughout the country, attending the Met's 11 HD broadcasts. It was the same reassuring bustle, whether I was about to see Verdi's Traviata in a theater over a casino in Las Vegas or Mozart’s Don Giovanni in the middle of a snowstorm in Boston.
Creativity is an under-celebrated superpower. You hear a lot in nonprofit circles about the importance of telling stories, of measuring our impact, collecting data on relevant metrics, and learning from experience. You hear a lot about the importance of having a coherent strategy, experimenting, and having a better attitude towards failure, about giving up control, engaging your community.
Lately, I've been thinking a lot about creativity and the ways organizations can show personality. You don't often hear creativity singled out as a key thing to focus on, but if you bring creativity into your way of doing things success will flow.
Winning Conversations with Donors
Laura Fredricks, a fundraising consultant, say she has noticed a disturbing trend. Too often fundraisers use the same formula to seek a gift, whether they are asking for $10,000 or $50,000, instead of tailoring each interaction with a potential donor to the person’s interests and values. That practice wastes time and ensures poor results.
Conversations with donors are too important to use a standard template, Ms. Fredricks said. A guarantee that fundraisers are doing the right thing: They should be a little nervous every time. Otherwise, it’s a sign they are coasting. She offered her five steps to improving conversations with donors: