Oftentimes on the topic of sales and marketing, people tend to assimilate these business focuses with the generic commercial, for profit organizations. After all, sales and marketing are profit drivers for a business. Social impact organizations tend to be mission focused, not profit focused. However, without money, social impact organizations are unable to effectively address societal issues. With greater amounts of money, social impact companies may acquire the resources necessary to make a greater impact. Therefore, a strong sales and marketing focus is vital for the success of social impact organizations. Observing the two departments as it pertains to social impact, first separately and then conjoined, it is clear why a strong sales and marketing focus is necessary for the success of social entrepreneurs.
Marketing for Social Impact Organizations
Marketing is a necessary force for good, as it pertains to social impact organizations and their success. Human beings are simple creatures. We are attracted to that which is flashy, shiny, outrageous, and in our faces. The unfortunate reality is that commercial organizations tend to have the largest marketing spend and therefore are always at the forefront of people’s minds. Case and point: Super Bowl ads, which American companies pay large sums of money for, are hilarious, flashy and outrageous. Imagine all of the success that social impact organizations would have if they marketed themselves as flashily as the Apples and Teslas of the world.
They key to a successful marketing strategy for a social impact organization? Focus on your mission, your work and the lives that you positively impact. Your mission is the core of your social impact organization, and it is beautiful! Your mission will naturally attract people who are interested in your work. Take advantage of it…market it! The same may be said for the work that you do and the lives that you impact. People are generally interested in work that is supportive and impactful. Whether it is through social media, blogging, videos, TV advertisements, or a mix of all forms of marketing, spreading your company’s message is vital to its success.
The most important part of a marketing campaign? Starting. Get out there and give voice to your organization. Start with something that you enjoy doing. Just start.
Sales for Social Impact Organizations
While sales, by definition, is a profit driving force, it is also a force for good. Sales is more than the sale of a product or service. Sales is a mindset. It is a method of identifying, connecting and growing with potential partners. It is a way to gain buy in from key stakeholders who may positively impact your social impact organization. Do you run a nonprofit organization that offers products or services for free? Sales is necessary to establish relationships with complimentary companies, groups and individuals. No matter what type of company you operate, a sales mindset is necessary for its success. Don’t like the word ‘sales’? Call it ‘relationship development’. Regardless of what you refer to it as, a social impact company must conduct sales outreach in some capacity, in order to succeed. Every company needs relationships to survive and thrive. No one can do it on their own. Sales is necessary for success.
Sales and Marketing as a Force for Good
Sales and marketing are complimentary business focuses that together are a force to be reckoned with, especially as it pertains to social impact organizations. From a business perspective, marketing provides the introduction and sales is what creates the buy in from key stakeholders. Marketing and sales are dependent on each other. Without marketing, gaining traction during the sales process may be an uphill battle. Without sales, marketing efforts are meaningless. Focusing on social impact companies specifically, it is implausible to sell your company’s product, service or mission without marketing.
By focusing on both sales and marketing, social impact organizations are able to increase business, impact more lives and ultimately have a greater impact on the World.