Category: Inbound Marketing

Information about inbound marketing

Viral Nonprofit Marketing: 4 Types of Examples

nonprofit viral marketing

The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge of 2014 raised $115 million. This is the kind of success every nonprofit wants. If you don’t remember what the challenge was about, here’s a video you might enjoy.

The most important part of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, was that it made people aware of the ALS Association, and the disease they were collecting donations for, amyotropic lateral sclerosis.

For any nonprofit that wants the kind of attention that ALS received, the biggest struggle is coming up with a viral nonprofit marketing campaign. Once that’s accomplished, its a matter of utilizing video to promote it.

There’s different messages for videos that an organization could utilize to: kick off a fundraising campaign, thank participants, create awareness of problem, or to inform viewers what your organization is all about. The most important thing about these videos is that they are unique to the nonprofit, are honest, and aren’t forced.


The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge is what you would call an interactive campaign. It enables participants to create their own content promoting the campaign, and also the non profit.


Popular Culture

An organization might use popular culture in their campaign to leverage what their audience is already familiar with to draw attention to their message. A great example is when the Children’s Hospital at Dartmouth Hitchcock created a video of their patients lip syncing to Katy Perry’s Roar.
Another great example is when the Salvation Army used #TheDress to draw attention to a campaign to #StopAbuseAgainstWomen.


Infographic Campaigns

You’ve probably seen those infographics that present information in a fun way. Those work for nonprofits too. Infographic videos are great for sharing facts about an issue, or about an organization in general. There are many people who simply can’t absorb a message unless it’s laid out visually.
Charity Water does a great job illustrating facts and figures as well as telling a story in this campaign.



What grabs people the most are stories. Viewers will remember what emotionally moves them. And these videos make the situations tangible. Save the children accomplished just that in their viral campaign.

Viral campaign planning isn’t easy, particularly if that’s what you’re aiming for. Your best bet is find something that resonates with your cause and organization. Talk to the people your organization supports to find a story, or an idea. You never know where the next big hit could come from.
Here’s an example of a Thank You video that then kicks off a new campaign. Charity: Water does a great job at inspiring action.

Ignoring high production costs, people will buy into your organization if what you’re sharing is honest, unique, and not forced.

25 Tactics Great Websites Use

What are GIFs? A Medium of Communication

what are gifs

GIFs (which stands for Graphics Interchange Format) have become a major way to communicate. Twitter announced in June of 2014 that GIFs are now supported by their social network. What are GIFs? Although they are just now starting to pick up steam, GIFs have been used on the internet for years.

Tumblr, a microblogging site popular with teens and young adults, rules the social media arena in GIF usage. Other sites like Facebook and Twitter have been playing catch-up to Tumblr, but since employing the usage of GIFs, have seen quite the success. But why are they popular all of a sudden?
People see GIFs as an easy way to respond. Twitter has a 140 character limit. Why finagle your response when it can be said in one image? The saying goes that pictures speak 1,000 words. GIFs speak volumes because they’re that line between still images and videos.
GIFs aren’t just used by teens and young adults. Major brands are joining them.



GIFs have evolved into more than just flames or waving flags. They’ve become a complete art form. Even the NY Times have written about its sudden prevalence in social media by a growing number of brands, not just consumers.
Use GIFs to show off a new product, or use it to promote science, or film, or art. But be careful about your usage. Don’t just use GIFs to use them. Make sure they’re relevant to what you’re posting. Like this elephant waving goodbye. See you next time!

25 Tactics Great Websites Use

5 Social Media Hacks to Help You Work Smarter, Not Harder

social media hacks

Being on social media is all about working smarter, not harder. I’ve written about different tools for analytics, hashtags, and posting tools. Let’s look at 5 social media hacks to make your job even easier.


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If This Then That is an app based on recipes to make your life easier. These recipes are connections between apps. For example, I use a recipe that will check the weather app each morning and tell me to bring a jacket. Talk about having a great personal assistant right in your pocket!
There are two kinds of recipes, IF and DO. IF recipes will connect apps like: IF I posted an image to Instagram, THEN save the images to Dropbox. See? IF _________, THEN ________. DO recipes are  even cooler.
Have HUE lights that you want to turn down? There’s a DO recipe for that. These recipes are more direct. With the touch of a button, it’ll do what the recipe says and dim your lights from your phone.
They have plenty of social media related recipes to make your life easier, so don’t just use IFTTT for changing your lights from the couch. Explore and create your own recipes!


2. Grammarly

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If you write blogs or any kind of online content in a browser, you don’t usually have access to a grammar check. Most browsers these days will check for spelling errors, but grammar isn’t part of that package. Grammarly has your back.
Grammarly is a free browser extension for Chrome and Safari will check for 150 different types of errors. If Grammarly finds errors in your writing, it will flag them and make suggestions for grammar, spelling, and vocabulary.


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Ever want to create a beautiful graphic, but you’re not a graphic designer, or don’t have one in your organization? Never fear, here’s a way to get you started with the basics!
Canva is easy to learn, and provides you with templates for whatever type of graphic you’ll need to make. Need a new Facebook cover photo? Don’t worry, Canva has a template that even includes where your profile picture is.
There are plenty of free elements to Canva, including fonts, backgrounds, images, and templates. And there are some paid pieces too – but they are $1. You don’t even have to use the paid items unless you really want to. Its easy to find the free objects, or import your own for your nonprofit or small business.

4. TED Talks

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Ever need inspiration? Or maybe you want a video on a specific topic? TED Talks are the best source for great videos about a wide variety of subjects. They make great pieces to share and engage with your audience.
My favorite is “The danger of a single story,” by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. Some of the videos are long, but often times, they’re worth the watch. And there’s a few quick stories that are excellent conversation starters.

5. Personality

Social media is all about relationships and interaction with people. Don’t focus on promoting your product, or your company all the time. Its okay to use social media to express your company’s culture and personality. You’ll have a more genuine image.
Share that beautiful sunset photo from last night, or the office pet napping under your desk. People want to know that your organization is run by humans, not robots.
Life hacks are here to make your life easier. And these are some easy ways to help with your productivity and inspiration. Sit back and get hacking.

25 Tactics Great Websites Use

You Need a Social Media Content Calendar. Here’s Why.

social media content calendar

Remember those analytics tools I wrote about? Hopefully you have some statistics from your social media networks that have pointed at some posts that have performed well. Based on those numbers, now is a great time to create a social media content calendar if you haven’t already.

Not sure you need a social media content calendar? Here’s a few reasons as to why they are the most useful tool to your social media strategy.

1. You’ll know what needs to be posted

You don’t need to post every day of the week, but say there are days you want to post but don’t always have the time? Social media is about working smarter, not harder.
It’s Monday morning, and you need to post on your social media accounts for your organization. But what do you post? If you have a calendar, all you need to do is check out what’s on the schedule and get to posting.
If you have an upcoming event, this gives you an easy way to have reminder tweets scheduled in the days or weeks leading up to the event. And then the thank you posts scheduled for after everything is finished.

2. Going on vacation?

If you’re stepping out of the office for a few days (and don’t want to post on the road) your coworker can pick up the slack. By having a social media calendar, this gives your colleague a guideline to your social media. They can check the calendar you’ve set up and easily make their own post.

3. Hashtag Days

Every day of the week there’s a hashtag or two that people post to. Mondays are #musicmonday or #motivationmonday. Thursdays are #tbt or #throwbackthursday.
Daily hashtags are a great way to help structure your calendar if you post a lot on Instagram or Twitter.
Pick two or three hashtags for the week, and use those as a base structure. Maybe every week you’ll post to: music Monday (#musicmonday), women crush Wednesday (#wcw), and Caturday (#caturday). On these days you can easily do a photo to Instagram. And then on the off days, you can share articles, or have a blog post scheduled.

4. Advanced Scheduling

Don’t want to worry about some of your social media posts for a while? Content calendars make it easy to schedule content well in advance. After that, its just a matter of checking on the analytics to tweak posts based on those numbers.
Social media calendars make it easy to manage the variety of content you could post for your organization. Maybe women crush Wednesday outperforms music Monday by a landslide. Then you could adjust your calendar to highlight people instead of music.
Managing social media for a small business or nonprofit isn’t as scary as it might seem. These tips will take a huge burden off your shoulders. We’ve got your back.
HubSpot has a social media content calendar template available as a free download. Check it out here.

25 Tactics Great Websites Use