Why should nonprofits invest in a modern marketing engine?

Jamey Heinze, Chief Marketing Officer at CDS Global, recently spoke at the 2014 Bridge to Integrated Marketing & Fundraising Conference on the topic of how nonprofits can utilize certain marketing techniques more effectively than for-profits can. The full discussion can be found in a brand new white paper: “The Nonprofit vs. For-Profit Marketing Approach: Ten Techniques Your Organization Should Consider.”

In this blog post, Jamey talks about technique number 10 – investing in a system to streamline your marketing efforts. Read about the other techniques here.

This is an interesting one, and a topic near and dear to me. I’ve been in for-profit sales and marketing for the last 24 years straight. After 15 or so years I thought I had it all figured out. I mean, how much more besides the four P’s and some common sense did I need? Turns out over the last 10 years “traditional” B2B and B2C marketing got turned on its head. We’ve seen organizations effectively lose control of the brands they worked so hard to create as individuals (donors, customers, constituents of all types) took over the reins with social media. We’ve seen entire new marketing disciplines arise in the form of web/inbound/search engine marketing (both organic and paid), content marketing, and the advent of big data as discussed above. And we’ve seen a huge push to illuminate the “black hole” for the CFO, so return on marketing dollars invested can be clearly identified. In all, marketing has become less about the art and more about the science. It’s a whole new world out there and it’s exciting and daunting all at the same time.

I wrote about modern marketing and the nonprofit industry relatively recently, though from a slightly different angle. I explained that with today’s marketing automation systems bi-directionally tied to CRMs, we are able to weave together lead attribution sources that didn’t even exist a decade ago (i.e. social media channels), with other online and offline activities, to create measured, multi-touch, integrated campaigns to carefully selected targets. It’s a closed loop approach that really couldn’t have existed on a broad scale before the advent of today’s tools and systems, and it’s what modern marketers do to measure and refine the effectiveness of their lead development efforts. Businesses don’t want to throw good money after bad, and neither should nonprofits. All organizations should invest in the kind of automated marketing engine that allows them to generate the greatest return on each marketing dollar they invest. If you can prove the ROI, it just makes sense.

Learn more about this and other nonprofit marketing techniques in the white paper “The Nonprofit vs. For-Profit Marketing Approach: Ten Techniques Your Organization Should Consider.”


CDS Global powers the modern nonprofit. For more information on our solutions, including donations processing, donor acknowledgements, mailing services, data capture, customer service, prospect insights, and more, visit www.cds-global.com/nonprofits.  


Jamey Heinze, Chief Marketing Officer, CDS Globalinfo@cds-global.com.  Follow Jamey on Twitter: @jameyheinze