Nonprofit Marketing: Is Your Brand Magnetic?

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The following is part of a six-part series based on content from Social Media Week Los Angeles, held at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica, June 12-14, 2018. For more tidbits and conference coverage, follow #SMWLA on Twitter.

 

Blame the algorithms. Blame the bots. Blame the 24-hour news cycle. The internet is OVERLOADED with content. And no matter how much blood, sweat, tears, time, and dollars you throw at your brand strategy, there’s a good chance you’re not going to get noticed…especially if your brand is lame.

 

It doesn’t matter how impactful your cause and mission are, if you don’t have the right content and brand to support it, you’re going to get overlooked. In fact, according to Facebook, the average social media user scrolls through a Statue-of-Liberty’s worth of content EVERY day. Yep – that’s the equivalent of 300 feet of content.

 

How can you build one of these magnetic brands?

Magnetic brands are those brands that people are already passionate about. They follow these brands, live them, and breathe them. And they talk about them without being prompted, paid, or rewarded. They just genuinely love being part of the brand’s tribe.

 

Magnetic brands are made up of three different pillars:

  1. They have a point of view.
  2. They a personally relevant to the consumer.
  3. They have a personality.

 

So what can you do to cultivate a magnetic brand? Here are some tips I took from SocialDeviant’s presentation at Social Media Week LA:

 

Have a point of view and plant a flag. Give people something to rally around. Successful brands plant their flag and leave it there. You don’t see them zigging and zagging around, changing their perspective or their focus. Keep your point of view consistent to avoid confusing or overwhelming your audience.

 

Show, don’t tell. Bring your purpose to life through interests and actions. Everything that you do should revolve around your purpose. By giving your brand interests and taking action, you give your brand dimension and depth. Remember: a brand is what it does, not what it says.

 

Define the behavior and the audience you want to attract. When you think about the people you want to attract to your brand, who are they? What are they like? What do they care about? Don’t get hung up on the demographics of your audience. Pay more attention to their behaviors and attitudes instead.

 

Know the role and relevance of your brand. What value do you provide as a brand? When you’re creating content and incorporating personality, don’t start with the question, “What content can we produce?” Instead, think about what value you can provide to your audience and then create content to support that value.

 

Use the rules of attraction to guide your brand’s personality. The rules of attraction can be used when you’re on a first date AND they can be used to help define your brand’s personality.

  1. Make a great first impression. Remember, you only get one opportunity to make a first impression.
  2. Be yourself. Be authentic and truthful with your content.
  3. Add dimension. Don’t just talk about one thing. When you incorporate your brand’s interests, it gives you more to talk about and more ways to connect with your audience.
  4. Listen. This should go without saying, but you’ve GOT to listen to your audience – what they want, what they care about, what they like and don’t like about your brand.
  5. Don’t get to clingy. Remember – you want to attract an audience with your brand, not with constant selling and gimmicks. Bring value to your audience.

 

What are your favorite magnetic brands? What do you love so much about them? Tell us in the comments!

 

About author

Kadi McDonald

No matter where she's worked, Kadi has successfully evaluated deep-rooted communications challenges and developed a plan to improve and simplify for the audience. She has shifted her professional life to one that allows her the flexibility and time to be dedicated to her passion projects. She develops and manages social media strategies for nonprofits, writes articles and blogs for a wide variety of clients and audiences, and consults on small marketing and branding projects for all types of businesses. She is a storyteller by nature and thrives in environments that crave authenticity and transparency. She works with multiple nonprofit organizations whose missions surround the ideas of community, compassion, service, and equality for all.