Welcome to Taking the Mystery out of Branding! 2010 Mentoring Children of Prisoners National Conference April 9, 2010 New Orleans, Louisiana
What is a brand, anyway? McDonalds versus Franks Home-Style Cooking
A good brand answers: Who are you? What do you do? How do you do it? Why should anyone care?
The answers to these can help you: Fundraise Attract quality board members Market your programs Recruit and retain mentors and staff Tell your story or narrative
Quickly list 4 things you trust your mentoring programs brand to convey: 1. _____________ 2. _____________ 3. _____________ 4. _____________
Who are you? We are __[name of your program]__, a nonprofit organization.
What do you do? We are volunteers who mentor children whose parents are in prison.
How do you do it? By providing these children with culturally relevant services based on the principles of positive youth development.
Why should I care? Because we all benefit when children feel safe, nurtured and cared for, especially those children whose parents cant readily provide for them.
Possible positioning statement: XYZ is a nonprofit volunteer organization that mentors children whose parents are in prison. By providing culturally relevant, age-appropriate services we help these children feel safe, nurtured and cared forthings that their parents cant readily give themand something we, as a community and a society all benefit from. Its your elevator speech
A brand screams out: TRUST ME! A good brand quietlyand alwaysfulfills that pledge.
Branding myth #1 Marketing and branding are one and the same.
Marketing and advertising are promotional strategies for selling products and services. Your brand is a reflection of everything associated with your organization…
Including (but not limited to)… The quality of your mentoring work Your reputation/how people view you and what you do Your staff Your leadership Your organizations core cultural values and the passion you have for mentoring children of people in prison. Why your work is so important, not only for the children you serve, but for the community at large.
Branding myth #2 Once we have an attractive logo and catchy tagline, we have our brand.
Your logo and tagline are the banners for your brand. Your brand drills much deeper into your organizations core values.
Truth is, logos dont really do much of anything…. They dont make you cooler. They dont make the product better. In fact a logo means nothing. Unless, of course, the company behind it means something. --Hyundai auto ad in Time magazine
Branding myth #3 Branding is the responsibility of our communications and marketing folks.
Branding is the responsibility ofEVERYONE in your organization, from board members to executive and support staff, as well as volunteers.
If it helps, consider the person who answers your phones your Director of First Brand Impressions
Branding myth #4 We dont have a budget for branding our organization.
If you effectively leverage your current resourcesincluding your staff, volunteer mentors, board membersyou may not need much of a budget to better brand your organization.
Why concern ourselves with defining a clear, consistent brand? Because it doesnt matter how good the choir is… …If everyone is singing from different song sheets… Its just noise!
Reality check: Has your mentoring program come to consensus on what it is, what it does, how it does itand why anyone should care enough to support its efforts? Is there internal consensus on your mission, positioning and communications strategies? If so, do your current communication materialsincluding logo, editorial content, graphic design, and other materials, including business cardsreflect consistent brand messages and images regarding your mentoring programs?
Reality check: Is your program structured to send out clear, consistent messages to your target audiences, as well as to staff? Have you created a messaging packagei.e. positioning statement, supporting statements, etc.to help everyone stay on message? Are you aware of how others currently perceive your program? Is the programs current perceptions of itself positive and healthy?
Again, its your responsibility to tell people : Who you are What you do How you do it And why they should care
XYZ is a nonprofit volunteer organization that mentors children whose parents are in prison. By providing culturally relevant, age-appropriate services we help these children feel safe, nurtured and cared forthings that their parents cant readily give themand something we, as a community and a society all benefit from.
Step #2 Actively promote your brand! A reality check
When it comes to promoting your brand… …Start from the inside out
Reality check: Does everyone in your mentoring programfrom leadership to support staff to volunteersknow what the brand is? Are they educated, motivated Ambassadors of the brand? Is branding included as part of your strategic planning process? Is understanding the programs brand part of your employee and volunteer orientation process, as well as part of your annual performance review?
Reality check: Are your promotional materials up-to-date, attractive and compelling? Have you tested your messages? Does your website accurately reflect your brand, and is it easy to navigate and updated regularly? Are you out in your respective communities promoting and reinforcing your brand? Are you aware of the morale of your current workforce and volunteers?
Are you and your staff: Attracting media attention, including smaller media outlets (dont overlook company newsletters)? Recognized as experts in the field, especially by the media? Engaged in civic activities? Effective Brand Ambassadors so others can become Brand Advocates for your organization? Using social networking technologiesi.e. FaceBook, MySpace, YouTube, Twitter, etc.especially if youre seeking to reach a younger audience.
Step #3 Diligently protect your brand! A reality check
Reality check: Does everyone in your program understand what it means to protector livethe brand, namely how to keep its reputation positive, strong and trustworthy? Do leadership, staff and volunteers take advantage of training opportunities in leadership, finance and ethics? Is there transparency with respect to finances? Is the workplace culture open to speaking truth to authority?
Reality check: Is there awareness that your funders are seeking ever greater accountability and clearer outcomes from the work that you perform? Do your decision-makers understand the difference between doing what is legal versus what is ethical? Do you consciously strive to meet all of the expectations i.e. promisesyour brand represents?
Protector liveyour brand: Hire/recruit well (affluence and influence are worthless w/out integrity and wisdom!) Educate (whats at risk?) Be transparent with your finances Speak truth to authority Legal is not the litmus test Expectations…expectations…expectations
Three take-home messages! 1. Clearly define your brand It will help reduce the noise and clarify the message 2. Create good Brand Ambassadors It requires good leadership 3. Legal is not the litmus test for doing the right thing Rather, what would your mother think if your decisions were to be aired publicly?
Thank you! Larry Checco Checco Communications Branding consultant Motivational speaker Workshop presenter Helping organizations clearly define who they are, what they do, how they do it and why anyone should care! www.checcocomm.net www.checcocomm.net