No, this isn't a spoiler for the TV show "Mad Men."
This is a wake-up call to all nonprofit marketers who are still using tired techniques that should have already gone the way of shag carpeting and three-martini lunches.
Even though so-called "modern marketing" has been around for two decades thanks to the World Wide Web, some nonprofits are still using marketing techniques that are decidedly outdated. Nonprofit organizations can no longer send out mailers each month and expect a big fat check in the self-addressed stamped envelope on the return trip.
If your nonprofit has been going through the same marketing motions for a while, maybe it's time to step back, re-evaluate the needs of your organization, and bring your nonprofit marketing into the 21st century.
The Marketing Technologist
One place to start is with your marketing team itself. (Even if you don't have a marketing "team" per se, this advice will still apply to your organization.)
The concept of a marketing technologist has been around for a few years but has only recently started crossing into the nonprofit sector.
As marketing becomes more technology-oriented, the addition of technical marketing skills for your team is one of the best returns on investment you can get. It may be that someone on the team would love the opportunity for some self-improvement. If so, encourage them. If not, then begin your search for the right person to add to the team.
A marketing technologist's main focus is on discovering new ways that technology—and more specifically, data—can augment and influence marketing and bringing better data driven metrics to the marketing team.
Sometimes been referred to as creative technologists and growth hackers, the ideal marketing technologist has natural technological savvy and nitty-gritty know-how, but he or she is also inexorably drawn to the world of branding and marketing. They are creative, yet are driven by analysis, ROI, and creating efficiency.
They are equally comfortable in Excel or Photoshop. The combination of these two very different skill sets is what makes them unique. They don't draw a line between the left brain and right brain. They understand that these dramatically different disciplines should work together - seamlessly.
Another thing that makes them so special is their innate ability to make connections that neither the classic ad exec nor the typical data geek might see.
With deeper technology skills in the department, marketing teams can ease the IT staff load to implement changes and make adjustments to web pages. Marketing technologists are able to artfully blend graphic design, functionality, user experience (UX), and digital analysis to create a new breed of marketing for the future.
To learn more about marketing technologists, check out the source himself, Scott Brinker of chiefmartec.com.