Increasing Visibility: Engaging CFC Donors and Other Parties
While the Internet has not changed “everything,” it has changed how we shop, how we get directions, and most relevant to the CFC … and all nonprofit fundraising, it has changed where we get our news and information.
And even though video is an increasingly important method of sharing information, the written word is how we acquire most of that data.
Free Press Release Distribution Sites
In that regard, there is one type of tool that can be invaluable for nonprofits in getting the word out about their mission: Internet based press release distribution sites. PRWeb and 24-7 Press Release are two of the better known of those sites … many of which have free options for non-profits.
One thing to keep in mind about the Internet is that it has a voracious appetite for content, and that should change how you get the word out. If you can tell your nonprofit’s stories to more people, you will generate more exposure and hopefully more positive attention as well.
You may not remember the old way of developing a press release distribution list, where NPOs compiled a contact list of the media outlets in their region; and, when they had something newsworthy to report, they would print and mail copies of their press release to that media list.
With that method, you might have gotten a story published if one of those outlets was interested in your topic and issue. That was “push” marketing — you pushed out your press release to whatever publications you thought/hoped might be interested.
Now we have press release distribution sites, where, instead of distributing your press release to outlets you think/hope might be interested … newspapers, magazines, other publications and websites looking for content come looking for your information.
They sort the volumes of information based on the keywords associated with each press release. This is the “pull” method of distribution versus the “push” method.
Telling your stories this way can afford you incredible leverage. For example, working with one client, we submitted one press release to 7 sites on April 8 … by April 11 it was on 426 sites; 2 days later on 876 sites; and, within 3 weeks it was on 12,000 sites. This particular press release had a good selection of keywords, including family friendly, volunteer appreciation and mission related terms.
Aside from the simple fact that no one has the time to actually contact thousands of media outlets, you cannot always predict which sites will actually be interested in your content.
For the nonprofit in my example, the big surprise was that a national news service was interested in visiting their site and doing a story about one of their activities – and this organization is a “local” nonprofit.
The next post in the CFC series will discuss creating the CFC project team within your nonprofit, including leadership development opportunities for your staff and volunteers.
+ + + NOTICE + + +
The Office of CFC Operations will conduct an application training for national and international charities on November 18, 2011, 10AM — Noon, at the U.S. Office of Personnel Management (1900 E Street NW, Washington DC). The session is free and open to everyone as long as seats are available. Send an email with your name, organization and telephone number to email@example.com to reserve a seat.
The Office of CFC will also conduct a similar training via webcast on December 1 at 2PM (EST). To participate, send an email with your name, organization, and telephone number.
During his 25-year career in the Federal sector, Bill Huddleston, The CFC Coach, served in many CFC roles. If you want to get involved in the Combined Federal Campaign, maximize your nonprofit’s CFC revenues, or just ask a few questions, this is the guy to contact … Bill Huddleston1@gmail.com