We hope you’ve been gaining some valuable nonprofit fundraising insight concerning celebrities and also viral marketing. In case you haven’t seen one of our recent articles, take a moment to read critical information about what you may have missed.

In this final piece in the series, we’re going to explore how you can get your nonprofit group into conversations that might be happening in culture. There are several reasons why you want to consider getting your brand related to societal conversations which could benefit your group. If it does not seem spammy and opportunistic, it can help your brand convey its human story. A few examples of leading brands that have gotten themselves into cultural conversations because they believe they have taken an important stand for their brand include Nike and Colin Kaepernick and Dove and their campaigns helping women redefine themselves and beauty.

Marie Kondo and Leonardo DiCaprio

As of this moment, there are some pop culture trends, as well as cultural trends, that your nonprofit fundraising and marketing efforts can leverage. For instance, you have to be living under a rock not to know that Marie Kondo has inspired countless American families to get rid of their stuff. Her show, Tidying Up With Marie Kondo, on Netflix has been an enormous success. People are seeking to get rid of the clothing, accessories, shoes and cell phones they no longer want to open up space in their homes and feel better. Some people who have taken to tidying up have been partnering with organizations that help them get rid of their things while also giving to charity and providing a hand-up to micro-entrepreneurs in developing nations in need of merchandise to sell.

Leonardo DiCaprio is not only a Hollywood movie star, but he is also a passionate environmentalist. He has been leveraging his star power and created the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation so he can advocate for the environment. Like Marie Kondo, although her approach is more about the joy in our space when we tidy up, both she and DiCaprio have created opportunities for savvy nonprofits to become part of national conversations concerning living simply, joyfully and helping the environment.

For instance on the cultural topic of the environment, perhaps your group wants to promote your name within your community and raise money. You may decide to do a creative fundraiser, such as a shoe drive fundraiser. In your promotional material, you can speak about the Marie Kondo phenomena and how people can clean out their closets.

Now that you know some of the most philanthropically active celebrities as explained in our earlier post, you have additional opportunities with celebrities and community leaders, whether they are local or national names. If you’re thinking of getting involved in a cultural discussion, you can use platforms that can connect with you with celebrities and leaders who might be supportive of the topic and also your cause. In other words, you can research leaders who are passionate about cultural topics such as the joy of your home, women’s issues, or the environment.  You can then see how to get them involved with your group for added star power to leverage your brand in a broader context.

Getting Your Brand into the Conversation

Now that we’ve discussed some ideas, the question becomes how your nonprofit group can enter into a cultural conversation in a way that is genuine. The following are a few of our tips for you.

  • Your Story. The most fundamental thing to remember is that you want to convey your human story. As you think about how you want to get into the cultural discussion, make it a point to remember the human connections and stories that exist within your brand. Remember, you can convey your nonprofit story in the lives of those you serve, your team or your donors who support your cause. People connect with people and their stories.
  • Your Stand. When Nike decided to feature Colin Kaepernick, they did so understanding that the risk of blowback was worth the stand they wanted to take. If you choose to get involved in a cultural conversation around, perhaps the environment, equality, LGBTQ rights, women’s issues, etc., think about the stand you want to take. Be clear about your position and your support or stand against an issue.
  • Frame What You Want to Say. If you want to get involved in a cultural conversation, then think carefully of what you want to say and be consistent. Ensure that you’re authentic to your brand and that your messaging around the issue is exactly what you want to present to the public.

Social media and the 24 media cycle has made global, pop culture and cultural conversations much easier to be had. Your brand can join the cultural discussion with the development of a thoughtful, targeted and smart marketing campaign or a unique fundraiser.


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