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Salsa Blog

25 Marketing Terms Every Nonprofit Should Know

Do you know the difference between scoring and your Klout score? What about personalized emails versus individualized emails?

The one certainty in nonprofit marketing is that it’s hard to keep up. One minute you think you’ve mastered a best practice, the next it’s defunct.

Do not fear. We’ve compiled a list of 25 marketing terms and practices that will make you look and feel like the marketing maven that you really are!

1.     Klout Score

Do you know your “Klout” score? Klout is a numerical ranking that measures social influence (the size of a social media user’s network and their power to drive action), ranging from 1 to 100. Think of it as a quick way to gauge who your strongest and most vocal advocates are. Here’s more on why it matters.

2.     Optimization

Simply put, optimization is a way to get more out of your marketing efforts. Whether it’s getting more people to read your emails, improving your calls to action, analyzing data, segmenting lists – you got it! The trick is to use the data you have to look at each phase of the online marketing cycle and refine your marketing process accordingly.

3.     Big Data

The volume of data handled by online marketers is on the up – email lists, supporter history, and so on. This “big” data has seen many marketers turn away from spreadsheets to online CRMs (like our very own Cosm) and other data analytics tools that help them keep accurate, cross-channel records of supporter activity such as actions, event attendance, and more.

4.     Open Data

Open data is any data that can be freely used, reused and redistributed by anyone. For example, if you are looking to use images, videos, or other creative works in blogs or on social media sites like Creative Commons give access to free content.

5.     CRM

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is a system for managing an organization or nonprofit’s (aka “Supporter Relationship Management”) interactions with customers and supporters, both current and future. Salsa’s Cosm and Solis platforms are both examples of online CRM/supporter management tools. Here’s more on why every nonprofit needs one.

6.     Social Data

Nonprofits are sitting on a wealth of social data about their supporters and donors. Right now you probably have friendraisers, influencers, advocates and donors hiding out in your Salsa account who are also talking about you on social networks. Imagine being able to identify your best social influencers and then hitting them up with an ask within hours of them mentioning you on Facebook? Learn more about increasing donations with social data and friendraising.

7.     Edgerank Algorithm

This algorithm determines what Facebook users see and don’t see in their newsfeed. It’s a frustrating and mysterious algorithm that can make it harder to make an impact. But don’t give up, Facebook should still be part of your social and engagement strategy, here’s why.

8.     Engagement Rate

Simply put, this is the percentage of people who saw and engaged with your social media post (liked it, clicked the link, shared, favorited, etc.). It’s an important metric to understand because it helps you gauge what’s working and what isn’t – is your content interesting, relevant and useful to your audience. If not, try something else.

9.     Online Engagement Tool

Tools, like Salsa, that let you get more out of digital outreach with sub-features that help you build donation forms, quickly launch online fundraising campaigns, manage email outreach, share actions across social media, manage events, and more.

10.  Storytelling

Storytelling is a powerful art used to spread your message and motivate supporters to act. Storytelling can be done visually using photographs and video or with words. Learn more about the power of storytelling for spreading your message.

11.  Multi-channel marketing

The process of using multiple channels (email, social media, print, events, etc.) to reach and interact with donors and supporters. Read more about creating your multi-channel outreach plan.

12.  Testing

Whether you’re testing email list segmentation, new ways to re-engage, or trying out more than one subject line or ad creative, nonprofit marketers should never get complacent. The ideas you think are “best practices” that worked for you in the past are not necessarily practices that can carry you forward. Keep testing. If your email open rates are low, try changing your subject line and do some A/B testing to see how different versions perform or try out these Six Testing Ideas for your Next Email Campaign.

13.  Responsive Design

Are your sites mobile friendly? The best way to do this is through a tactic called responsive design. In short, it means that your site will look good, and function well, regardless of which device is being used to access it. Here are some great examples of responsive design in the nonprofit world.

14.  Social Appending

"Social appending" lets you add or "append" your nonprofit email database with social media addresses and other social data. It integrates what you already know about your supporters from social media with the emails you send them. This makes it easier to tailor your messages to certain individuals or groups, and gives you the ability to connect and engage with them across multiple channels.

15.  Social Media Optimization

So you’re posting content to your website, but is that content portable? Can your supporters follow your blog via RSS or share your latest post on Facebook, can they easily share your latest video and embed it on their site? Social media optimization is all about making it easy for your followers to spread your message and keep coming back.

16.  Content Curation

The great thing about social media is you don’t always have to create your own content, instead it’s perfectly fine to sift through your networks and the web to find and curate content that’s relevant to your audience. Whether it’s a social share or a report you’ve found online, give it some context and an appropriate intro (and an attribution if needed).

17.  Conversion Rate

Your total conversion is the number of people who took an action or responded to your marketing efforts. This could be clicking on a link in an email, signing up for an event or making a donation. To get your conversion rate, you divide the above total number of conversions by the number of visitors to your site.

18.  Re-Targeting

Re-targeting is a form of online advertising that lets you stay in front of supporters after they’ve left your website. You’ve probably seen re-targeting (a cookie-based technology) at work when you browse products online. Once you’ve left the site to visit another one you see ads for the same product or company appear on the pages you’re now visiting. It’s a useful tool for staying in front of potential supporters and keeping your message top of mind.

19.  Scoring

We love to talk about scoring at Salsa. Why? Because it’s a super useful way to help you segment your supporters. By incorporating all the actions and activities that your supporters have taken over time, you can gauge and rank your most active supporters. This is important because it can help you determine your most (and least) engaged supporters, look at supporter engagement over time and even establish ways of moving supporters along the ladder of engagement more effectively. Read more about scoring and nonprofit engagement.

20.  Personalized Emails

Personalized emails are email blasts that include the name of the recipient in the greeting field or subject line. This is an easy one, but included as a contrast to our next term…

21.  Individualized Emails

Individualized emails use data gleaned about your supporter’s interests and past actions to tailor messages and give them what they want.  For example, if you’re an animal rights organization you could segment your audience by those who are interested in dogs versus those cat lovers. Then hit up the dog lovers with an email featuring dogs!

22.  Email Blocking

Email blocking happens when an ISP literally blocks one of your emails from reaching the inbox of your intended recipient. They do this because your email domain may have been flagged as a suspected spammer. This happens more often than you might think, especially if you’re not cleaning your list regularly and practicing good list hygiene.  

23.  False Positive

Speaking of spam! A false positive occurs when a legitimate permission-based email is filtered incorrectly as spam.

24.  Double Opt-In

Adding a double opt-in to your email sign-up process improves email deliverability by requiring subscribers to confirm their opt-in by clicking on a link in a confirmation email.

25.  Spam Traps

Spam traps are a way for anti-spam organizations and email providers to measure if you clean your list or obtain non-opted in emails. If you don’t you risk getting blocked.


Topics: Marketing