The Wrong Message, to the Wrong Person, at the Wrong Time

Relevance is the key to marketing. As marketers, we strive to serve up the right message, to the right person, at the right time.

But what happens if we get it all wrong?

I was at a conference last week in San Diego, and just this morning, I received a post card mailer with a headline that read, “Don’t be in Last Place!” The subtext told me to stop by a vendor booth at the conference—but the conference ended last Wednesday. Failed! The irony is that this vendor was in last place—their message didn’t arrive until after the conference was already over.

The offer on the flipside of the post card told me, “Be a Winner!” and talked about how I could win an iPod touch. Failed! Obviously, I am not a winner—I didn’t get the iPod touch. In fact, I didn’t even know about the contest.

Just a few years ago, the damage that this type of marketing blunder would have caused would be limited to probably me, a few of my associates around the office, and maybe a few of my colleagues that I would have shared this with.

But today, in the age of the democratized media, where anyone with a blog, Twitter following, or Facebook account can instantly syndicate any message around the world, this type of blunder can prove to be very costly.

Take the example of the ad agency exec that didn’t realize his role as an ambassador for his brand (and they’re supposed to be in the brand-building business right??) and became the subject of international embarrassment to his company by posting a stupid comment about a client’s home town (read the whole story here).

The key takeaway in this example is summarized in the following statement published by the ad agency’s client:

“This lapse in judgment also demonstrates the need to apply fundamental communications principles in the evolving social networking environment: Think before you speak; be careful of you what you say and how you say it.”

So the moral here is simply this: when thinking about your marketing strategy, make sure that you approach it from a defensive perspective as well as an offensive perspective. There are just too many people out there that can potentially give you brand heartburn by using your marketing mistakes against you.


Fundraising in the New Economy

In this economy, we have a whole new set of rules and realities. Learn what you need to know to navigate change as you:

  1. Develop better relations with donors

  2. Learn about how others are finding success during these times

  3. Discover what will motivate donors in 2010

Download The Fundraising in the New Economy Presentation

This presentation was delivered on Wednesday, April 21, 2010 at the Christian Leadership Alliance Conference in San Diego, CA

Other Resources of Interest

Also, I’ve included some links to some additional resources that were referenced in the presentation:

  1. Convio 2010 “Online Marketing Nonprofit Benchmark Index Study”– Lots of great metrics and insights in this report. This will help you know how you “stack up” with other nonprofits in key areas.

  2. Convio’s “The Next Generation of American Giving”– This is a study on the contrasting charitable habits of Generation Y, Generation X, Baby Boomers, and Matures.

  3. Benjamin Zander Ted Talk– I would strongly encourage you to invest the 20 minutes it takes to view this presentation by world-renowned conductor, Benjamin Zander. This is especially inspiring for anyone that finds themselves in a position of leadership.

The Presenters

Todd Dexter
KMA Direct Communications

Tim Kachuriak
VP, Digital Marketing
KMA Direct Communications


Everything is Amazing, and Nobody is Happy!

I came across this clip yesterday on a flight back from San Diego and I laughed so hard that I was literally crying.

Then, I sort of got depressed.

We truly do live in amazing times. The technology we have today is unbelievable. And yet, we are constantly, and consistently, unsatisfied by what our technology has provided us with.

The ability to move across the country in hours, not years.

The ability to instantly communicate with virtually anyone, anywhere on planet earth.

The freedom to shop from our home, work from the golf course, and be entertained while commuting between activities.

But yet, no one is satisfied. When our technology breaks, we freak out. When we have to wait for something, we become restless. And when we can’t afford something, we go into debt.

So, could it be in technology’s quest to solve problems it has actually created even more?