MARKETING TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL ORNAMENT PROGRAM
Now that you have developed your ornament, you need to figure out the best ways to market or promote it. Here are some of the best practices we have learned from over 43 years of experience working with organizations like yours.
Create a database of clients, supporters, donors, members, etc., and make sure as new donors, members, or supporters come on board, that you keep the list up to date. Capture information like names, addresses, and emails. Make sure to ask for their information on your website, point of purchase, order form, registry, etc.
Don’t forget that some of your best prospects are part of your organization, club, or association. Are all the employees, volunteers, and vendors aware of your ornament program? Add them to your database or use an employee newsletter or pay stub insert to get the word out internally.
In addition to the list you build, you can purchase a list of people who would be good prospects for your organization and send your mailing to them as well. Some organizations even trade lists.
As you probably know, websites play a KEY role in promoting your organization. Without a website, all of our tips below are a bit less effective. The reason being, your website is the only platform where your audience or potential audience can learn all they need to know, in one place. Not to mention, all of the best marketing practices below, should drive your audience to your website.
After years of experience creating successful ornament programs with organizations throughout dozens of industries, we have seen the best results with those organizations that promote their ornament(s) on their website. Here are some ideas…
- Does your organization have a gift shop? If so, be sure to add your annual keepsake to the shop.
- If you do not have a shop leave an email address or phone number for your customer to contact you to purchase.
- Is neither of the above an option for you? Try to partner with a local organization (i.e. Chamber of Commerce) or retail shop. Add their contact information on your website.
- Offer your keepsake as a donation incentive on your donate page. Supporters love receiving a special gift as a thank you for their donation. Not to mention, they will be more likely to donate the following year when your next annual ornament is available! This builds your collectors.
- Always use high-quality images of your ornament. Need help? No problem, we can help. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Be sure to add a thoughtful description about your annual keepsake. Include information like, “Made in the U.S.A.”, the details behind the design, why it’s important to your organization, how the funds from the ornament will benefit your org.
- Last but not least, add to your Home Page. Why? Because your Home Page is the most visited page on your website.
Social media is a crucial part of the fundraising strategy for nonprofit organizations. It is essential to helping you expand your reach and nurture your supporters. Social media has direct connections to fundraising dollars. It’s cost-effective, encourages customer engagement, and can educate your supporters about your mission and/or cause. Here are some ideas to promote your new keepsake ornament on social media…
- Create an eye-catching post to announce the launch of your new annual keepsake.
- Let your supporters understand how the funds from their purchase will help your organization.
- Share a blog that includes information about your annual ornament, the design, and the fact it’s made in the U.S.A.
- We can help you by writing a blog for you. Email email@example.com for more details.
- Post images or a video of “The Making of…” your annual ornament.
- We can help by providing this content for you. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.
- Consider trying to “Boost” a Facebook post related to your annual keepsake launch. Boosts are a great way to increase growth and target the right people. You can try this with a very small budget, and you will see results!
- Contact our marketing team to learn more about how we can help your organization market your keepsake on our Beacon Design social media pages!
To learn more about social media tips check out, Social Media Tips from 32 Leading Nonprofits.
A great thing about email blasts (Eblast) is that they are inexpensive and can be very effective. Emails can be easily tracked, allowing you to see which emails people respond to best and what they do once they receive your email. It also directs traffic to your site and increases awareness about your organization. Here are some ideas…
- Develop an e-newsletter that updates customers and prospects about your organization, events, milestones, and special offers.
- Send emails to alert customers when a new ornament is released.
- Send a special Christmas in July email offering special discounts on the current and/or past ornaments.
- Encourage customers to use the “Forward to a Friend” email option and get their friends to purchase ornaments, too.
- Always use a call-to-action button (CTA) to direct your customers to your website (i.e. Click to Donate, Support Our Mission, Act Now, etc.)
To learn more check out, 7 Tips for Nonprofit Email Marketing.
Once you have a database of customers, you have an automatic audience for your marketing and promotion. Send out a flyer or direct mail piece with information about your new annual keepsake’s release. Some key elements to think about for your mailer are…
- Tell a compelling story about your organization and what you hope to achieve with your annual keepsake program.
- Talk about how the funds raised from this program are helping you to further your mission or a more specific program.
- Build the hype that this is part of an annual series so that your supporters and donors become collectors looking forward to a new keepsake each year.
- Include a call to action (i.e. Purchase Today!) that will prompt your audience to purchase online, by phone, email, etc.
To learn more check out… Direct Mail Fundraising: 5 Strategies for Every Nonprofit.
- Develop an ad that you can use in your local papers, magazines, and even newsletters that your prospects might read (i.e., employee newsletters).
- If you have a logo make sure it is prominently displayed in the ad.
- Add all contact information possible including phone, email, and website information.
- Check with local radio and/or television stations to post on their community bulletin boards.
- If you have a website, post the information on the site.
- If you are a nonprofit you can also contact your local print media and submit the ad and ask them to run when they have space, pro bono.
By sharing the right information with the right people and places, you are helping to manage your reputation, promote brand values, strengthen community relationships, and enhance your online presence. Here are some ideas to get you started…
- Post the information regarding your ornament on your blog site.
- Write a press release about a new ornament release; distribute it to first and second-tier newspapers and Chambers of Commerce; also distribute to relevant web sites.
- Write a PSA (Public Service Announcement) about your organization and how the funds are used and distribute it to your local TV and radio stations. Get a TV personality to read it.
- Seek benefactor relationships or endorsements and promote. Is there someone “famous” who supports your cause or organization or is a huge fan of your ornament? See if they would be a spokesperson for the release of your keepsake and encourage others to join him/her in purchasing an ornament.
- Tie collectible to community events or organizations with similar interests.
IDEAS FOR PROMOTIONS/INCENTIVES
- Create a flyer of the product(s) with ordering information.
- Identify other businesses who may want to partner with you to sell and/or support your collectible/marketing efforts (i.e. Retail Shops, Chamber of Commerce, etc.)
- Display at local events (i.e. festivals, community days, parades, etc.)
- Promote as a “donation incentive” (Donate $25 or more, and receive our one-of-a-kind annual keepsake!).
- Create posters featuring your program and post in offices, stores, regional locations, or tourist sites.
- Consider tie-ins with similar organizations or events.
- Work with local personalities to draw attention to the program, project, or event.