5 Tips When Your Cause Isn’t “Cool”

Photo by bgeenlee
07.09.2012By

Photo by bgeenlee

Have you found yourself stuck in a runt thinking, “Our cause isn’t ‘attractive’ enough” or “We can’t get people to listen to us because we’re not cool” or something along those lines?

If that thought has come across your mind, this blog post is for you.

There’s data to prove that causes about animals are among the most popular “talked about” causes online (check out Craig Newmark’s Infographic from last fall). But when you look deeper into it, you see that it’s mostly because the page owners—the nonprofits—are actually talking back to their fans.

Go figure.

So it’s not about whether you have an “attractive” or “cool” cause or not; popularity online depends on if and how you engage with your supporters.

And if you’re advocating for something that affects our lives, chances are there’s a group of people out there who will agree with you, and support your cause.

Those are the guys you need to attract.

Just how do you do that? I’m glad you asked! Here are 5 tips and resources from previous Inspiring Generosity posts on how to bring in the people that will love you.

1. Find Your Personas

Your supporters will be made up of different “types” of people, so understand where they’re coming from and how to communicate with them. The latest post by John Haydon gives you 6 steps to find your marketing personas.

2. Actually Talk to People

Actually talking with your fans—and by talking, I mean having two-way conversations where your fans respond to something you post or you respond to something they post—is the only way your fans are going to feel appreciated and engage with you. Here are some good tips on finding the time to engage the right way.

3. Give Back (Don’t Just Be a Taker)

Be a good online citizen and listen, give, help, support, encourage, and seek others in your community. This is important to develop real relationships with your supporters that’ll transcend into other parts of your cause.

4. Show Instead of Telling

Pictures Rule, Text Drools. (That could be a meme!) Showing what your nonprofit does, the community you want to help, the progress you’ve made can sometimes be better told in pictures rather than long, descriptive text. Get creative about capturing images of your cause in action and show them to your supporters in different ways.

5. Tell Your Story And Give Hope

OK, I know I just said “show, don’t tell” but you still need to tell your cause’s story. Your supporters want to know about the family who lost their home, the endangered animals, or the important medial research that’s needed. But most importantly, they want to know what your nonprofit is doing about it and how they can help. Lay it all out and empower your supporters.

Those are 5 things you can do. But don’t think this is unique to the “uncool” causes; these are methods that the most popular causes are using!

Is there anything else you’d add?