Published Setpember 15, 2011 on CharityInsight.com
For charities struggling to keep up in a digital age, look no further than Pimp My Cause, a new online tool that helps charities revamp and overhaul their marketing strategy.
Pimp My Cause is free to use and it connects professional marketing companies with the voluntary sector. It only launched three months ago, but has already supported the transformation of several charities.
Rachele Follini is the director of the RSPCAs Stafford, Wolverhampton and District Branch and is responsible for its total regeneration. Although its affiliated with the RSPCA, the branch is an independent charity responsible for its own fundraising and reliant upon its local network to fund its work.
Rachele explained, "the first stage of the regeneration of the RSPCA Stafford, Wolverhampton & District Branch initially involved identifying and addressing the challenges we faced as a Branch. Our goals included raising our profile, making the transition to digital marketing and building the necessary skills and habits to do so, addressing funding shortages and harnessing the support network".
"We put an advert on Pimp My Cause because we needed guidance in developing an effective online marketing strategy and wanted to drive greater levels of traffic to our website. We had a clear need to increase our social media audience, attract new supporters and maximise online donor engagement and retention. We knew we ought to be doing all of this but we werent sure how to go about it!"
Bespoke Marketing Strategy
Barbara Coleman contacted Rachele through Pimp My Cause to offer her assistance. After a consultation process she created a comprehensive, tactical, bespoke marketing strategy for them.
"The strategy Barbara devised aimed to consolidate a fully integrated online and offline marketing strategy across all platforms to promote the Branch, donations and support, adoption of pets and ultimately improve awareness of our activities as a whole. She identified a need to develop a social media marketing campaign in addition to maximising online gift aid, donor engagement and retention", said Rachele.
The next stage was a thorough description of strategies to be employed including digital and offline activities. Digital activities included a new website design, search engine marketing, social media marketing, blogging and forums, Twitter, Facebook, podcasts, email marketing and link building.
A number of offline activities were identified including PR activities, networking, direct mail, telemarketing, events, training and community forums, food collections, charity collections, radio advertising and data strategy. All of this within a multi channel integrated marketing communications strategy.
Tactics, governance and systems were all examined. A ninety day chart of activities was produced, and it'll be reviewed on a monthly basis. Deadlines were made realistic, allowing them to concentrate on key objectives.
What is really fascinating about the work is that with all the new digital platforms available for communications, this complete digital plan was made accessible to a charity with limited funding.
"We dont have the financial resources for a marketing budget so Barbara produced a robust marketing and promotional strategy which is pragmatic, relevant and measurable using a range of platforms", said Rachele.
Barbara has also committed herself to offering her ongoing support on a specific project by project basis, to assist with the implementation of her plan.
Rachele concluded, "we would like to say thank you to Barbara and Pimp My Cause for giving us this amazing opportunity".
Pimp My Cause is free to use for both marketers and causes, including charities, social ventures and citizen groups.