VisABILITY offers an ongoing discussion of common-sense branding techniques, opportunities and risks. We named this service to nonprofit executives the Nonprofit Branding Blog
We know imprinted promotional products pose hazards for the unwary and the untutored. This blog does not flinch from exploring them. It will help you identify and master the essentials about effective purchase and use of imprinted branding products. And more!
Following are introductions to a few posts. The full content for each one is on Nonprofit Branding Blog.
We hope you will examine the entire roster of prior posts and then, if this blog will be an effective professional tool, sign up for email alerts about each future post.
Cambridge was in bedlam. Trapped in the mob, we moved the way we were pushed – and watched in fascination and a bit of fear.
It was Harvard’s graduation day. An Affinity Army of students and families was strutting its Gang Colors. And therein lies an important lesson for serious nonprofit brand managers…
Your nonprofit brand is a BIG asset! If it were a for-profit being sold to new owners, IRS and accounting rules would assign a substantial monetary value to your brand – and report that amount on your balance sheet.
In our world the value of a brand is measured by the extent to which the public honors and supports the nonprofit mission it represents. This is where you can get into trouble. For a brand-intensive and cost-conscious nonprofit, there are situations where it is very expensive to save money. VERY expensive!…
He roared "Damn it, Burke, don’t ever use the word ‘marketing’ in my presence again. That’s an order.” I was a callow 36 year old college vice president with an angry boss, the president - a smug but experienced tyrant who had resisted a changing world.
Chest-deep in a sea of denial, the president wrapped his arms and legs around a rigid belief system…and held tight. This harrowing incident introduces a blog-series about the advice marketing guru Dick Taft gave our industry years ago…
When used as contributor incentives, imprinted branding products helped nonprofits raise billions of dollars. A premium is a great success if it pays for itself, distributes branding products to your constituency and generates revenue you would not otherwise receive
This post explores how and why premiums work, the limitations on their success and the hazards they pose…
While texting on his cell phone, a blazing idiot drove his truck into my friend and her 5-year old grandchild. His irresponsible act made me think about the campaign conducted by NPR’s Car Talk – a brand-enhancing experience I watched develop into a national movement. Piggyback brand enhancement is a marketing tool your nonprofit may want to use…
This childhood occurrence revealed the most important thing you need to keep in mind when using imprinted branding products in marketing and fundraising programs.
One day in 1947 the world turned upside down. Affinity was challenged. Affinity lost the fight…
Research shows that nothing puts your mission in front of more people, more often, more positively and with less cost per impression, than high-quality imprinted products!
NOTE: The power of products imprinted with your logo is not an absolute virtue. That power can create an especially high risk for nonprofits. Our job is to help you reduce that risk…
Lawyers forced Mary Lou to modify the tattoo on her backside. She became pretty snarky over the incident. And the Ptomaine Palace pizza shop changed its name to rip off Penn State’s brand. This story is 90% true….and 100% important for brand-intensive nonprofits…
Job security is such an important topic for discussion we gave this post a mascot of its own. His (her?) name is Amalgam. Cute little thing, right? Are you living off a trust fund? Resume updated? Bridges already burning behind you? Then this information is too late to help. But – if you want to build a stable career in nonprofit marketing, take this advice seriously.
Start by studying Amalgam for a few seconds. That will help you understand why establishing and enforcing a graphics standards policy can help protect your employment…
Your personal attitude is almost immaterial. With a branding product, what counts is whether the intended owner will like it…will value it…will use it…and will make a favorable association between the product and your organization. Don’t select a product just because YOU like it. Select it because your market will value and use it. (NOTE: this post contains a funny and embarrassing story about a beloved NPR host who resisted this logic…)
Many years ago, we added a Glossary to our website. It defines PMS as Pantone Matching System, the universal color-matching tool for printers and graphic designers. The reason? While answering a question about matching her logo color on an imprinted mug, I asked a caller "Do you have the PMS.”
"Well, yes,” she replied in a frosty tone - "not that it’s any of your business!…”
Most nonprofit managers believe this: in a perfect world their mission would attract all the revenue they need. The world is not perfect. So, many nonprofits use contributor incentives to enhance gift income. Premiums can increase revenue if you understand how to use them. And why they work. The tips we offer are based on supplying branding products to over 16,000 fundraising and marketing programs – after we spent the first half of our careers managing nonprofits…
40 years ago, Kermit the Frog underscored the quandary nonprofits face: it isn’t easy being green. Sustainability is on the nation’s radar. This post explores the options, myths and realities of earth-friendly branding products. We then comment on technical and marketing considerations – and booby-traps…