Project Management

Smart Idea!

Project Management One of the things non-profits are great at is project management. After all, every concert, production, board meeting or subscription renewal campaign is a project, and most organizations can execute these things in their sleep.

However, I find that when it comes to the more mundane things — like building your email list, getting “likes” on Facebook, or getting weekly reports out the door — sometimes we fall down. (click to read more...)

User Generated Content

Marketing, Smart Idea!
User Generated Content

When we think about the content for our organizations’ websites, I’ll bet most of us start out thinking we’ve got to write it. Although this article “Why User Generated Content Is the Future of Marketing and How You Can Master It” over promises a bit, it does hammer home its main point. (click to read more...)

Getting Volunteers to Come Back

CRM & Ticketing

© kraifreedom - We’ve all had the experience of working with volunteers. And when it works well, it’s really great. You get terrific, motivated people who help you immeasurably.

So how do you keep these volunteers from coming back? (click to read more...)

The Mission Part of Email Marketing

Email Marketing

What makes arts & cultural non-profits different from others is that they are simultaneously "business driven" (I need to sell tickets) and "mission driven" (your support helps keep theater alive in Cleveland). Often we focus most of our email marketing on the business side — getting people in the door — and we don't have time to really focus on mission. (click to read more...)

Ice Bucket Challenge — A Chilly Blast of New Thinking


© victorwood - Fotolia.comKathleen Drohan

Kathleen Drohan directs the WQXR Radio Musical Instrument Drive and is the former associate director of public relations for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Additionally, she consults on marketing and public relations to artists and arts organizations. As a writer, she is a contributor to the book Worn Stories and blogs at

The dog days of summer 2014 will be remembered for many things, but in the non-profit community, this August has brought an unprecedented experience that conjures up everything from awe to hope to disdain. I’m talking, of course, about the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

Those three words have generated almost as much eye-rolling this summer as a new Kardashian headline, but it has also brought us together in a remarkable way and united us in philanthropy. In less than a month, the challenge has brought in more than $100 million in contributions to the ALS Association, a group that has traditionally raised about $20 million annually. This influx of funds may allow the organization to make real strides in finding a cure. The most talented groups of fundraisers, marketers, and publicists could sit down together and never come up with a device that would bring as many much-needed dollars as the Ice Bucket Challenge has.

There are genuine questions now about what happens next and how the ALS plans to use the funds, but these will be answered over time. We, as non-profit administrators, though, ought to be looking at the challenge and what it tells us about how our audiences can respond if we talk to them the right way.

First, there are some simple truths of the Ice Bucket Challenge. (click to read more...)

History Repeats Itself: Leveraging Your Historical Data to Drive More Sales

Guest Blogger

© cherezoff - Fotolia.comToday's guest blog post is written by Louis Anthony Pauza III, Client Services Representative - Data Team here at Patron Technology.

I work daily with our new organization clients on importing years of their historical data from legacy solutions into PatronManager. Part of that process includes helping clients attempt to predict what data they will use. Whether you’re in the process of migrating to a new system or have had one in place for 15 years, what’s important is that you thoughtfully and carefully choose what to import, and then put that data to good use.

Let’s dive into the hypothetical deep end of the data pool and discuss how this might play out.

Let’s say a regional theatre produces Cole Porter’s Kiss Me Kate and William Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew in the same season. (For anyone who isn’t aware, the former is an adaptation of the latter.) The marketing manager for the theatre plans four unique email campaigns, the first of which is an individual campaign for each show, targeting potential audience members based on their previous ticket-buying patterns. (click to read more...)

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