Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Communicating about Coronavirus and Your Events, Part 2

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Last week, I shared a post highlighting how the organizers of two nonprofit conferences — NTC and Create Good — were messaging attendees regarding their decision-making in the wake of the coronavirus epidemic (now pandemic).

What Nonprofit Communicators Should Binge Watch #NPCOMMLIFE

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

I know very few nonprofit communicators are laying around all day binge-watching TV. Most of you are working from home still trying to make the world a better place.

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COVID-19 and Media Relations: A Quick Guide for Nonprofit Communicators

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

COVID-19 is quickly rewriting the rules for how all of us are approaching our communications. It’s also forcing all nonprofits — no matter the mission — to rethink their short-term media relations strategies.

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Communicators – March 27, 2020

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

How is everyone holding up out there? I am still trying to find the best articles, posts, tips, and more from around the world of nonprofit marketing and fundraising, but heads up – it’s going to be a lot of coronavirus-related talk.

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Six Inclusive Stock Photography Sites Every Nonprofit Should Have Bookmarked

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

You know you need great photography. But for whatever reason, you don’t have it in-house. Maybe you don’t have the skills or access to a professional.

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How to Be Relevant Now (And What NOT to Say)

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Nonprofit communicators are full of anxiety right now about messaging, from what to say, to how often, and where to say it. Let’s get two common questions out the way. Should we stop messaging if our work has nothing to do with coronavirus?

Thank You for the New Design, Facebook. Because Nonprofits Need MORE Disruption Right Now.

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Have you noticed this on the top of your desktop Facebook? We’ve known that another major Facebook redesign — called FB5 because it’s the fifth major redesign — was in the works for a while now. But what a wonderful time to fully roll it out! (I

7 Mistakes to Avoid with Email Newsletters

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

With the advent of social media, it seems like you constantly hear cries of “Email is dead!” ” That isn’t exactly true based on a recent survey of small to medium business by SharpSpring and Ascend2.

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Social Media and Newsletter Ideas for November 2019

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

These writing ideas come from our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts email newsletter. You can use them for social media, blog posts, newsletter articles, and more. If you would like these ideas sent to your inbox a month in advance, sign up for our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts.

6 MORE Proven Fundraising Asks

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Last week we shared some our favorite fundraising asks , and today we are back with a few more classics that work. To recap the first six: The Match Sponsor/Adopt The Menu Fighting Evil The Single Story The Emergency.

The Nonprofit Email Apocalypse is Coming

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

For the last several years, we’ve blogged and trained nonprofit communicators about the importance of monitoring email engagement – not just open and click-through rates on individual emails, but how many people on your email list have opened at least one email within a set period time, such as the last three months. . It’s not a number that’s front and center in most email service provider dashboards (but should be). Yet it’s incredibly important to whether your emails get delivered to the inbox or to the spam folder. For this year’s Nonprofit Communications Trends Report , we decided to survey the extent to which nonprofits are implementing good email list management practices. The results are not good. In fact, they are downright awful. We at Nonprofit Marketing Guide aren’t “the sky is falling” alarmist types by nature. But we’re pulling the alarm on this one: If nonprofits don’t start implementing email list management and engagement best practices, they will bring on their own personal email apocalypse. Nonprofits that ignore email engagement and list management best practices will soon find that what used to be an effective communications tool has become utterly unreliable and perhaps even useless. Why? Because if you don’t manage your email marketing for engagement, your deliverability will go down. That’s the email jargon for “your emails will go straight to the spam folder.” It’s time to stop worrying so much about whether your subject line sounds spammy and start worrying about how you manage your mailing list. . We aren’t the only ones sounding the alarm. EveryAction’s 2019 Email Deliverability Study estimates that the nonprofit sector could be losing almost $100 million in donations because appeals are going into spam folders. In its 2019 end-of-year fundraising season wrap-up , M+R reported that email deliverability was a big problem, with many nonprofits struggling to get their email appeals into inboxes. In their 2018 year-end analysis , they found that nonprofits who saw their list size drop year-over-year (because they actively managed their lists, dropping the unengaged) also saw better returns: a 26% improvement in response rate and a 2% improvement in email revenue. Email deliverability and engagement are like the climate change of nonprofit communications. Half of the people are unaware or in denial about it and the other half aren’t sure what to do or if their actions will make a difference. Kivi Leroux Miller, Nonprofit Marketing Guide. It’s time (actually it’s past time, right now, in early 2020) to evaluate where you are and what you need to do. If you are already experiencing problems, you can repair the damage. But it takes a lot of time, energy and work to do so (more than managing for engagement in the first place). and the results aren’t guaranteed. And for anyone thinking that just switching to another email provider will solve your problems: think again. The heart of the problem is your list and how you manage it. Transferring bad habits to a new email provider won’t work. Nonprofits Largely Ignoring Email List Management Best Practices. A basic tenet of email engagement and deliverability is to only mail people who demonstrate that they want your content by continuing to open it. It doesn’t take much to be considered “engaged.” While there isn’t a hard and fast rule at this time, most email service providers consider a subscriber engaged if they have opened at least one email in the last 3-6 months. When a subscriber has stopped opening emails after a designated amount of time, you should send them a re-engagement series of emails to try to get them to open an email again. If they still don’t open an email, you should stop emailing them (or at a minimum, limit the number of emails you send in the future.). We found very few nonprofits have adopted these best practices. A little over half of nonprofits are implementing email re-engagement campaigns, although they are often waiting too long to do them. We found that 12% of nonprofits consider someone unengaged at three months or less and therefore ready for a re-engagement campaign. Another 15% set this mark at six months, and 27% set it at 12 months. The remaining 46% of nonprofits surveyed do not send email re-engagement campaigns. Nonprofits Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop Emailing. Unfortunately, even some nonprofits who are running re-engagement campaigns stop there and fail to scale back or stop emailing unengaged subscribers. A whopping 77% of nonprofits say that they never cut back the number of emails they send to unengaged subscribers, with 69% saying they never stop emailing, even if the subscriber is clearly no longer engaged. This is incredibly dangerous behavior, thus our apocalyptic warnings. Some nonprofits are trying, of course. But their standards for when to slow or stop emailing are far outside the email industry benchmark of three-six months. Only 4% of nonprofits cut back sending after three months of no engagement, with another 5% cutting back at six months of no engagement. Another 13% cut back at somewhere between one to three years. Removing someone from the mailing list entirely is even harder for nonprofits to implement relatively quickly. Just 4% of nonprofits said they would stop emailing someone entirely if they hadn’t engaged in six months. Eleven percent of nonprofits are using the 12-month mark, with another 16% stopping email at some point between 18 months and 3 years. This is serious. You must stop emailing people who never open your emails. Otherwise, you have no one to blame but yourself for causing your nonprofit’s email apocalypse. . Email List Management Nonprofit Email Marketing

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Three Simple Steps to Using Original Photos

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

We get lot of question about the best ways to use photos especially of clients. Today, Holly Bodner joins us to share some tips on using your own photos. Kristina. Holly Bodner. Guest Post by Holly Bodner.

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6 Ways to Stay Motivated in the Summer and Still Get Work Done

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

I don’t know about you, but sitting at my desk all day is really hard right now. Like near impossible. Here are a few ways to stay motivated during the sweet summertime months when all of that work still needs to get done. Give more time to strategic thinking and professional development.

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Improving Your Open Rate: The From Line

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Half of the battle with successful email marketing is getting your emails opened, period. The decision to open an email is made in a split second (actually less than that).

5 Ways to Increase Your Email Open Rates

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Last week, we talked about the importance of your From Line in getting your emails opened. It’s a big one that deserved its own post ! Let’s look at five other important factors in your increasing your open rates. Good Subject Lines.

How to Make the Most of a Television Interview

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

One of our nonprofit clients just landed a great opportunity to appear live on a cable network to talk about her organization’s mission. She’s a wonderful speaker – and she knows her subject matter better than anyone. But it’s been a long time since she’s been put in front of a camera.

How to Write a Collaborative Communications Strategy

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

When Cathy White shared with our Mentoring Program participants the collaborative process she went through to create her communications strategy, I knew other communications directors would be interested in hearing about it too. Cathy White. Guest Post by Cathy White.

Mixed Links for Nonprofit Communicators – March 20, 2020

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Happy Spring! Hope everyone is doing their best as we head into another week of self-quarantines and social distancing. Luckily we still have the best articles, posts, tips, and more from around the world of nonprofit marketing and fundraising.

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How to Connect Email Engagement to Your Big Goals

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

This week I’ve spent several days working over our marketing metrics here at Nonprofit Marketing Guide, especially related to email engagement.

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Mixed Links for Nonprofit Communicators – Coronavirus Edition March 13, 2020

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Town Branch Distillery. Lexington, KY. Good thing we’ve been practicing “social distancing” for these little Friday get-togethers. Probably not shocking to any of you, but this week I will be sharing the most helpful articles focusing on the coronavirus and marketing/fundraising.

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Social Media and Newsletter Ideas for December 2019

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

These writing ideas come from our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts email newsletter. You can use them for social media, blog posts, newsletter articles, and more. If you would like these ideas sent to your inbox a month in advance, sign up for our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts.

How to Choose Between Two Words

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Should it be this word or that word ? Nonprofit communicators debate these kinds of things all the time. For example, earlier this month, I wrote a blog post called Improving Your Open Rate: The From Line.

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This Could Be the Perfect Time to Start Your Nonprofit Podcast. Learn How Tomorrow

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

As we all try to navigate the changes to how we work and live over the next few months or so, creative forms of digital communication s will be more important than ever. You can’t just stop communicating with your supporters despite how hectic everything is right now.

15 Authentic Moments to Create on Social Media

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Successful social media strategies demand authenticity. But what does that actually look like when you are juggling a million different tasks, trying your best to stay strategic, and work in a boring office environment that’s not exactly photogenic?

Join Us Wednesday: The Donor CARE Party and Training

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

On Wednesday, March 18, the nonprofit fundraising and marketing community will be celebrating the release of John Haydon’s final book, Donor CARE: How to Keep Donors Coming Back after the First Gift. Yes, it’s on Amazon now, BUT WAIT!

Find Your Happy Place #NPCOMMLIFE

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Just a quick reminder: Don’t forget to take care of your mental health as well as your physical health during the next few months. You need to have a safe place you can go to mentally to help you re-center and feel happy.

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Mornings and Your Mental Health #NPCOMMLIFE

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

As someone who is not a fan of mornings, most posts about making the most of them leave me rolling my eyes. I don’t care how many articles I read about how the most successful people get up early – I WILL NEVER BE A MORNING PERSON. (By

What Goes into a Nonprofit Marketing and Communications Plan or Strategy?

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Ever been asked to create a marketing strategy or a communications plan for your nonprofit without any further guidance? You aren’t alone! Let’s sort it all out, so you can figure out what you really need to create. First, let’s address the definitions.

3 Nonprofit Email Unsubscribe Pages That Might Inspire You

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

You’ve been working so hard on content and trying to keep people engaged, but it’s inevitable: some of them will click that unsubscribe button (or perhaps the “manage preferences” link if you offer it). All is not lost.

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Where, When and How People Open Email

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Litmus is out with a new update to its State of Email Engagement Report. Here are a few interesting findings from their research on more than 10 billion emails worldwide. Where People Open Email.

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Is This an Email, a Meeting or an Instant Message?

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

We know that nonprofits rely on email and meetings for internal communications — in fact, they over-rely on them!

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You Need an Email Welcome Series

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Whether they are signing up for an email newsletter or donating to your cause, it’s important to make new supporters feel all warm and fuzzy about getting involved with your organization. An email welcome series is a great way to start building relationships that can last.

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5 Hooks You Can Use to Get Your Story Told

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

What’s your hook? This question likely looms over you daily if your job is to pitch stories to the media or create content for your organization’s owned media channels.

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Newsjacking: From Roadkill to Rock Stars

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

During the wee hours of the morning of April 8 th , I received a call from Tom Harrison, director of the award-winning North Carolina Black Bear Festival and Bear-ology Museum. Tom and I met a few months earlier at my G.R.E.A.T. media relations presentation for NC ShowFest.

5 Trends to Watch for Nonprofit Communicators in 2020

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

The coming weeks are the busiest of the year for nonprofit communicators. GivingTuesday will gobble up much of our attention during the first week of December. Then comes the critical end-of-year giving season.

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How This Organization Uses an Internal Newsletter to Keep Their Staff Updated

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

A couple of weeks ago, I shared some tips from other nonprofit communicators on how to communicate internally at your organization as well as other resources on getting people to meet deadlines and the best communications apps to use.

Social Media and Newsletter Ideas for September

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Interested in getting monthly ideas for social media, blog posts, or newsletter articles earlier? Sign up for our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts. I send this email newsletter the first week of every month with prompts for the following month.

6 Proven Fundraising Asks

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

The last couple of weeks we talked about ways you can ask your community to get involved with your work in ways that don’t involve donating money.

How to Rock Instagram without Photos

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

While Instagram is definitely a visual platform and photos are best, you can still manage a successful Instagram strategy without photography. Just take a look at the ACLU’s feed and stories.

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How to Take Care of Yourself This Season #NPCOMMLIFE

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

This time of year is already chaotic enough without the added stress of being an nonprofit communicator. It’s very important to us that you take care of yourself. You have people to help and planets to save!

Social Media and Newsletter Ideas for October 2019

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Wish you had these monthly ideas for social media, blog posts, or newsletter articles a few weeks ago? Sign up for our Monthly Nonprofit Writing Prompts. I send this email newsletter the first week of every month with prompts for the following month.

Enough with the Pointless Nonprofit Storytelling

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

My favorite definition of a story comes from The Elements of Persuasion : “A story is a fact, wrapped in an emotion , that compels us to take an action that transforms our world.” Richard Maxwell and Robert Dickman All of the five words I have in bold are essential to nonprofit storytelling success.

How to Handle Negative Online Comments

Kivi's Nonprofit Communications Blog

Flickr Creative Commons photo by Serra Boten. One of my clients recently celebrated a big victory. After months of talking about his desire to get an opinion piece published in The Chronicle of Philanthropy, he achieved his goal.

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