Shit Just Got Real: Using the Word Non-Profit is a Mistake

Shit Just Got Real: Using the Word Non-Profit is a Mistake

Mission and programming are the two key components to a strong non-profit. The issue is a non-profit needs profits. Let’s do away with the term non-profit. It speaks only to tax exemption and not the day to day work a team is doing to bring in donors and write grants.

In his TED Talk, Dan Pallotta speaks to the issue with non-profits. Watch it here.

There are some organizations we all know and can appreciate to some degree, but have gone through PR nightmares. The reason: approximately 80% of an Executive Director’s day to day work is spent finding money and then managing it. While I talk to our clients about a positive money mindset, most give me the side eye because “mindset” is a soft skill, but changing your perspective on areas of your department, business or non-profit you do not like (managing millennials who seemingly don’t care about being on time, raising money, writing a business plan) will make your life easier. Consider one of our clients, Just Hoop, Inc.

Just Hoop is in California and the Executive Director is a great basketball player who trains young kids to teenagers on the fundamentals of basketball. He had some clients when we first started working together, but he did not have a campaign (an A to Z marketing strategy that includes written emails, ways to build authentic connection with your audience and strong strategic partnerships) to build money funnels. He knew that he needed to grow interest in Just Hoop, but he did not know how. He would get overwhelmed and completely stop working on the non-profit because he did not know where to begin. Here are 2 key insights into the problem Just Hoop, Inc. hired us for and the results from our work.

Key Insight #1: “Non-Profit” is a Mindset that Limits Who You are of Service to

Results: Through a year long marketing timeline, engaging copywriting and a plan to connect with well-known partners, we showed Just Hoop, Inc. how to bring in money while keeping the mission front of mind. We wrote a digital marketing strategy, coached the Executive Director on how to shift his perspective on non-profit funding and created an email marketing campaign for him.

Here is the Executive Director’s words 60 days after the contract came to an end:
“Although we haven’t been able to follow the strategy precisely, we were able to establish a strong relationship with the San Leandro Unified School District in which allowed us to get our FREE Day Camp flyer approved to be passed out at every Elementary and Middle School in San Leandro. We are discussing partnering for an after school program as well.

To date we have over 70 signs ups for our FREE Day Camp ! We also have 8 paid sign ups for our Fall Group Training which is great considering we’re new with no videos or samples of our work.

I had been meaning to reach out to you but we’re pretty happy with the results thus far. This is a testament to your great work and expertise – thanks again!”

Key Insight #2: Hook Your Caboose on a Moving Train

Results: When you are a small company or non-profit, your #1 task is to connect with a government agency, non-profit, and/or for-profit entity. If you are an organization worth its salt, you will have a fresh perspective, needed programming and/or a needed personality that aids to an established entity. We provided Just Hoop with a sharper unique buying proposition while remaining true to the organization’s deeper purpose and wrote a narrative for him that would help “sell” his idea to partners. It was great!

Here is another comment the client made following our work together.

“Ebonni’s work for us has been nothing less than exceptional. As a non-profit organization we strive on executing our mission & vision. Ebonni not only took the time to understand our organization, but more importantly, she passionately engaged and implemented creative ideas to help us reach our goals. Her customized strategy and thorough implementation process provided us with clear direction and confidence to successfully execute our tasks. As a result we increased our contact list by 450% and were able to exceed our goal by selling out at our local community event. Ebonni is a seasoned & polished marketing expert who simply knows her stuff and gets it done. You can tell she takes pride in her craft and her positive approach makes her a pleasure to work with.”

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