Tag Archives: segmentation

Nonprofit Radio for January 16, 2023: Overcome Common Communications Conundrums

 

Erica Mills BarnhartOvercome Common Communications Conundrums

It’s time to change the way you think about marketing, says Erica Mills Barnhart. You’ll make it more successful, find your true believers, and have more fun. She’s CEO of Claxon.

 

 

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[00:01:22.42] spk_0:
Hello and welcome to Tony-Martignetti non profit radio big nonprofit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host of your favorite he abdominal podcast. Oh, I’m glad you’re with me. I’d bear the pain of a phone. Yah. If I had to speak the words you missed this week’s show overcome common communications conundrums, it’s time to change the way you think about marketing says Erica Mills Barnhart, you’ll make it more successful, find your true believers and have more fun. She’s ceo of klaxon On Tony’s take two planned giving accelerator here is overcome common communications conundrums. It’s a pleasure to welcome Erica Mills Barnhart to non profit radio Erica is a communication expert, speaker, author and coach. She’s founder and Ceo of Klaxon focused on teaching companies and leaders how to use words to change workplaces and the world. Erica also serves as an associate teaching professor at the University of Washington. She’s at Erica Mills barn and the company is at klaxon hyphen communication dot com. Welcome e M B

[00:01:37.34] spk_1:
Thank you Tony for having me.

[00:01:39.41] spk_0:
Pleasure to have you. Happy new year.

[00:01:41.33] spk_1:
Happy new year back at you.

[00:02:23.35] spk_0:
Thank you. I hope you enjoyed holidays and time off very much. Let’s talk, let’s talk marketing because this, this is your, this is, this is your world and because you think about this stuff every day and others of us only get to think of it when uh things are not going right, we’re, we don’t feel like we’re, we’re having a struggling with 8.5 by 11 inch blank piece of digital paper and we feel like we have to fill it and it’s not flowing? And we feel like we’re not we’re not reaching our audiences. Maybe not in the right places, maybe not in the right ways. Were people have questions that we feel like they shouldn’t have they, people should know all this. You know, I think all this gives rise to us the rest of us thinking about marketing, but uh, you know, trying to piece it together and go as well. So I know you can uh allay our concerns

[00:02:41.93] spk_1:
and

[00:02:43.64] spk_0:
it doesn’t

[00:02:44.26] spk_1:
have to be that complicated.

[00:02:45.96] spk_0:
Thank you. Thank you. I I feel the same way about the work that I planned giving. Keep it simple. Thank you. All right, that’s enough of me talking. So you want us to change the way we think about marketing? What do you want us to do?

[00:03:00.16] spk_1:
Um I want you to start with the what? Rather than the how,

[00:03:04.21] spk_0:
here’s what I mean.

[00:03:10.17] spk_1:
So you gave, you gave a beautiful example, tony Um I mean years with a blank piece of paper, but oftentimes when we’re thinking about marketing, we go straight to like

[00:03:15.87] spk_0:
should

[00:03:16.21] spk_1:
we be on twitter? Should I be on linkedin? Should be on instagram? Should we do a newsletter? Should be online. But those are all

[00:03:21.69] spk_0:
house

[00:03:27.31] spk_1:
and there are I mean so many house, that’s the wrong question to ask

[00:03:29.45] spk_0:
first.

[00:03:30.79] spk_1:
You first want to ask, what does success look

[00:03:33.55] spk_0:
like? What

[00:03:34.94] spk_1:
are the results that we are looking to achieve? What are the outcomes that we

[00:03:38.58] spk_0:
want? Right?

[00:03:50.20] spk_1:
And these, you know, you want them to align with your organizational goals. Marketing and communication doesn’t means to an end, right? Let’s let’s start there. So it’s always a means to an end, Right? So how is it gonna

[00:03:51.26] spk_0:
support your

[00:03:52.41] spk_1:
organization? So always start with the what and then the

[00:03:55.13] spk_0:
who, who

[00:03:56.48] spk_1:
are you, who do you need to

[00:03:58.24] spk_0:
reach and

[00:03:59.48] spk_1:
engage with in order to achieve

[00:04:02.57] spk_0:
the

[00:04:19.85] spk_1:
goals that you set for your marketing, once those two things are answered and your real clear and don’t move on, like the best thing that you can do for yourself and your team, your organization is to like hold off on the how conversation until you’re what you’re who are very clear. And then, and the reason it’s so important to do in that order is because if you don’t, if you aren’t clear on who your target audience is, you’ll sort of project into the house, like, well, I love an annual report, I’m making this up, Right. Um How about we do an annual

[00:04:32.89] spk_0:
report.

[00:04:34.27] spk_1:
Well, if your target audience is, you know, gen z,

[00:04:38.40] spk_0:
they’re

[00:04:56.67] spk_1:
probably not looking for a, you know, multi page annual report, they’re looking for something really different. So it mitigates projecting your own personal preferences into your strategies and your tactics. So what, who, how, that’s what I call the Klaxon method? What, who, how what who, how always grounded in the UAE the bigger picture y for the organization, but also, you know, with what does success look like?

[00:05:01.60] spk_0:
Why is that important?

[00:05:02.78] spk_1:
Why is that goal important to the organization? Right? Who’s your target audience? Why are those

[00:05:07.40] spk_0:
people so

[00:05:08.72] spk_1:
important to you in the work that

[00:05:09.80] spk_0:
you’re doing?

[00:05:10.81] spk_1:
Right? So always what who, how backed by the way? Um And that keeps things

[00:05:36.55] spk_0:
simple. Which which I’m grateful for. Let’s let’s let’s unpack some of that. Um Marketing is a means to an end. You said it’s you’ve heard you say somewhere it’s in service to your mission. Alright. Let’s let’s let’s start with say a little more about why, why this is merely but an important means to an end.

[00:06:03.64] spk_1:
Yeah. Because if you’re not, if you’re not clear on that, like you’re sort of saying the beginning and I appreciate it. It’s like marketing can be a little existential, right? There’s a lot of the sense of like, I should know what I’m doing. We should, you know, we should be on Tiktok, we should be on all these things, right? It can be kind of like a fear guilt, shame based activity, right? Um

[00:06:07.19] spk_0:
And that’s

[00:06:07.75] spk_1:
when you’re just doing stuff for the sake of doing stuff because you know that you should do it, but you’re not quite, you know, like this, like what you were talking about? Like, I know I should be doing things, but I don’t really want to do. And I know, right. I just want to release that for people in the way. One of the ways there’s a few ways, but one of the ways that you do that is by really reminding yourself like doing this just for the sake

[00:06:27.75] spk_0:
of it, right?

[00:06:40.76] spk_1:
We’re not posting on Tiktok if you decide or linkedin, we’re not putting on newsletters or annual reports. We’re not doing any of that just for the sake of it. We’re doing it because it’s a service storm mission. It is in support of our mission. And that just, you know what I found because I’ve been doing this for almost 20 years, it can really calm people down. It can help you get grounded and then you can get that clarity and focus going

[00:06:54.14] spk_0:
alright. You also said start with outcomes. What does, what does success look like? Right. All right. So what are some of these, could you give us some like, sample outcomes? Is it, is it fundraising related? Is it, uh, engagement on linkedin related or maybe it’s all that, you know, give us some sample outcomes to, to start with,

[00:07:21.65] spk_1:
um, in for nonprofits, there’s sort of a hit parade. Right? So fundraising for sure. Um, programs definitely, um, sometimes can be internal engagement also

[00:07:27.57] spk_0:
by the way.

[00:07:28.53] spk_1:
Um, if we’re talking internal, but I’m going to keep the conversation sort of focused external. But I just want to note that, right? Sometimes you actually need internal marketing in order for the external activities. Marketing to be

[00:07:38.44] spk_0:
Successful. And internal internal outcome might be 50% reduction in turnover. Exactly like that.

[00:07:48.07] spk_1:
Yeah, exactly. Yeah. That’s a simple

[00:07:49.30] spk_0:
minded ones. I’m scratching the surface, simple minded, you know. But for

[00:08:08.12] spk_1:
non profits, it’s always gonna be fundraising and programs. Right? But there’s a third that actually it will surface uh, initially, which is raising awareness and when I work with clients

[00:08:12.42] spk_0:
so

[00:08:26.27] spk_1:
mushy. Exactly, tony It’s like very amorphous also. So that’s fine. Oftentimes you do need to raise awareness, but you’re going to add two words raising awareness. So that dot dot dot right?

[00:08:28.11] spk_0:
It’s

[00:08:28.39] spk_1:
Fine to raise awareness, but it needs again raising awareness. So that what so that you bring in, you know, more donors so that you increase your retention rate, you know, for existing donors. So that you attract 100 new clients or custom, you know, whatever it is. It’s, it’s like the means to an end to the means to an end that is marketing.

[00:08:47.87] spk_0:
Yeah, right. We have to hold our feet to the fire, raise awareness. Okay. 11 person in the community now knows that we exist who didn’t know. Okay, we raised awareness. We’re done.

[00:08:58.39] spk_1:
And you know what I want to say. Get

[00:09:01.02] spk_0:
away with that.

[00:09:01.99] spk_1:
The balance of staff versus volunteers or board members for your, for your podcast listeners. But the people who are, who offer raising awareness as a goal in and of itself, mainly board members.

[00:09:15.55] spk_0:
It’s

[00:09:16.61] spk_1:
often board members. Um but this comes from a from a beautiful place. So I also want to acknowledge that they’re so excited to work with the organization, right? Like of course they want people to know about,

[00:09:27.85] spk_0:
you know, we

[00:09:28.39] spk_1:
want more people to know. So I want to say it comes from a really beautiful place that we want to honor that, right? And and then also go to that next step, because that’s where things get strategic.

[00:09:45.21] spk_0:
Okay, okay, thank you. Alright, so, so we’re starting with our objectives. Um you you want us to have objectives that are objective neutral?

[00:09:50.75] spk_1:
Yes,

[00:09:51.61] spk_0:
talk about that.

[00:10:10.09] spk_1:
Yeah, well, so I distinguish between goals and objectives and it’s, you know, it doesn’t really matter, it’s a little nitpicky, but I have found and I have a podcast, communicate for good. And one of the early episodes is dedicated entirely to this topic, which is um I find it helpful if you’re semantically

[00:10:13.22] spk_0:
tidy,

[00:10:27.85] spk_1:
right? So that you have organizational goals and then you have marketing objectives or communication objectives and it just sort of reinforces that hierarchy of marketing and communication being in service to the organization and the organization’s mission. Um

[00:10:28.56] spk_0:
you know, and we’re here to talk about the klaxon method, so that’s fine.

[00:10:32.78] spk_1:
So we’re

[00:10:33.97] spk_0:
gonna we’re differentiate between objectives and goals. Starting with starting with objectives?

[00:10:43.92] spk_1:
Well, no, you would start with goals, organizational goals, organizational goals don’t move onto marketing. Let’s say

[00:10:47.11] spk_0:
that like

[00:10:48.41] spk_1:
if you’re not clear on your organizational goals, no marketing for you yet.

[00:10:52.49] spk_0:
And

[00:10:53.18] spk_1:
again, that can be simple too. I’m sure you’ve had other folks on here. You talked about this. You don’t need to be complicated to be effective with your goals, but you gotta have those. Otherwise you can’t move on to the marketing objectives because you don’t

[00:11:05.23] spk_0:
know, right?

[00:11:14.47] spk_1:
You don’t know what you’re being in service to. So, um, and yeah, you want the objectives to be something you can measure. Like did we make progress over, you know, a quarter or a year or whatever your time horizon is. Did we make progress? Did we increase

[00:11:21.13] spk_0:
retention? Did

[00:11:29.95] spk_1:
we grow acquisition? Do we have more donors? Right. Um, so it has to be something that you can measure. And oftentimes

[00:11:31.67] spk_0:
we

[00:11:32.42] spk_1:
resist in the nonprofit space getting this

[00:11:35.85] spk_0:
concrete right.

[00:11:43.15] spk_1:
We’re like, well, you know, we’ll just increase retention. Let’s stick with that because increasing retention is fantastic. But we don’t say by what percent right? Or by how much? Um, and this, what I find most often is that’s a fear of failure.

[00:11:53.77] spk_0:
Oh yeah. Right. We don’t,

[00:11:56.26] spk_1:
if

[00:11:57.31] spk_0:
we put a number to it now, we’re now we’re gonna be accountable at the end of whatever our time period is and you know, there’s the acronym for smart goals specific measurable. Is it attainable achievable is realistic

[00:12:14.20] spk_1:
and time and

[00:12:15.37] spk_0:
time bound. Right, okay. smart goals and that, that’s, you know, folks, you know, our listeners just google smart goals, You’ll find a million articles on

[00:12:25.38] spk_1:
smart what smart

[00:13:08.49] spk_0:
stands for and what smart means and etcetera. So, um, yeah, but right. But if we’re not gonna, but we’re not gonna be realistic and, and hold our own selves, hold ourselves in our organization accountable. You know what I mean? We’re supposed to be running this thing like a business. It’s a nonprofit business, but it is a business. I’m not saying, I don’t mean business pejoratively like cutthroat, but you know, we’re running a business here. We have employees, we have people who are serving or counting on us for, for for what we deliver. We have people who support us. They don’t necessarily buy things, but they support us with their time and their money more, You know, so, so I believe it is a business and it should be

[00:13:11.23] spk_1:
corporations, right? Nonprofits are, are technically corporations. Yeah,

[00:13:26.57] spk_0:
they are, they’re just non profit corporations. So, so, so don’t be afraid to hold yourself accountable. And, and so this leads to something that you believe that failure should be, not, not feared, but you know, accepted. And so, so, so don’t be afraid. I’m gonna give you a second. Just so folks, you know, don’t be afraid to set goals and objectives that are measurable. So, you know, whether you’ve achieved them because failure is not, um, I’m not gonna say failure is not an option, because that’s not true, failure should be, should be accepted and maybe even embraced, you learn something,

[00:13:59.38] spk_1:
it’s all in and what you do with the failure, right? I mean, it’s it’s, it’s somewhat inevitable, like we were all coming through covid, right? We tried all sorts of things, like we just had kind of had a failure fest in a lot of ways over the past few years and if you look at like how the sheer volume of things we learned,

[00:14:15.61] spk_0:
that’s

[00:14:18.03] spk_1:
success, that’s winning, right? Like failure has such a negative connotation and I do want to unpack this a little bit because I can imagine that that you have listeners and they’re like, that is not an option in my organizational culture, it’s not safe to fail. So this is, this is a leadership issue, issue in a culture

[00:14:34.67] spk_0:
issue, right?

[00:14:45.07] spk_1:
Like we have to lay this firmly at the feet of the leadership, that is where this culture either is or is not created. Um, and when, when, when failure isn’t an option just to play that out a little bit, people play

[00:14:49.72] spk_0:
small, they’re

[00:14:51.03] spk_1:
doing the same things over and over again, right? You actually become less effective over time,

[00:14:55.64] spk_0:
small, safe,

[00:14:56.80] spk_1:
safe. This is how we do it. And you know, this is how we do it a shorthand for, this feels safe to me,

[00:15:02.68] spk_0:
right?

[00:15:04.01] spk_1:
So, so a piece of this

[00:15:05.15] spk_0:
is

[00:15:08.38] spk_1:
psychological safety, this feels safe to me, right? And so you have to bring great intentionality as a leader when I’m coaching, you know, I do a lot of coaching one on one with leaders and with teams about one on one. We talk about failure a lot, like, because you have to start with what’s what’s your personal relationship with

[00:15:21.36] spk_0:
failure? Because

[00:15:27.70] spk_1:
failure feel safe to you, because if it doesn’t feel safe to you, well, that’s first step for you, right? You can’t be up there pontificating about like sailors, great, we’re gonna embrace it and meanwhile you’re like, oh my God, please, I never wanna fail. Um that’s not gonna work. You know, you have to unpack that. Like, what is your subconscious mind telling

[00:15:40.73] spk_0:
you, what

[00:15:41.00] spk_1:
are your beliefs about failure? What was modeled for you growing

[00:15:44.36] spk_0:
up around

[00:15:49.17] spk_1:
failure? You know, you have to do that inner work first that inner game, and then when you’re like, okay, I see the positivity and failure, then you can bring that forward um

[00:15:56.96] spk_0:
as

[00:15:57.51] spk_1:
a leader, but really this is about culture and it’s about leadership.

[00:16:28.35] spk_0:
Yeah. And I would say, you know, if if you’re in a place where failure is not at least accepted, I mean, we’re not gonna we’re not cheering for it, but at least accepted. You know, it may not be the right place if you because because it is it’s a place that’s playing like you said Erica it’s a place that’s playing safe and small, and, you know, we have enormous problems. Whatever whatever work you’re doing from education to animal welfare to the environment or whatever religion, whatever you’re doing, we’ve got a lot to do and playing safe and small is not going to get us there.

[00:16:48.96] spk_1:
Yeah. But you know what’s interesting tony is when we look at both like inter internal to the sector, but also external constraints to the sector. Um, but I just always wanna acknowledge when we talk about failure as it relates to nonprofits and they’re very

[00:16:53.60] spk_0:
world

[00:17:17.46] spk_1:
changing work. Like donors are not always super jazzed about the idea of failure. So there are some legitimate external constraints, funding constraints, largely funding related or partnership related, but mainly funding is what we’re talking about here, where it’s like, no, we’re not, no, that’s not on the table. And so you have to, you know, really figure that out for you. You know, look at your funding sources and risk tolerance and failure tolerance as it relates to those and then figure out like how can, how can you create a funding portfolio that does allow you to take risks. It does allow you to fail. Um, so I just always want to acknowledge, you know, uh, you know, listeners, if if you’re getting funding from pretty traditional sources that have like where that’s not an option. I just want to acknowledge that that’s a dynamic.

[00:17:42.67] spk_0:
Okay. Yeah. And I’m, I’m not disagreeing.

[00:17:46.40] spk_1:
Yeah, I don’t, I just never want to come off as like failure and embrace it and say hooray and whatnot. You know, like given given all the variables that leaders are dealing with. I just I want to acknowledge it’s not it’s it’s it’s messy, right? It’s

[00:18:25.62] spk_0:
part of that also is messaging though the way you, the way you go back to those funders and and and and even not only after the fact, but before before, you know, right before here’s something we’re going to try and launch this program and we’re gonna try to reach 2500 people in the next year, you know, but acknowledging that that’s that’s a stretch, you know? So I mean there’s there’s messaging, maybe it’s even marketing involved in all those in the whole process

[00:18:41.95] spk_1:
relationship building, right? So if from the I would hope like when I, you know, was in development that one, um you know, especially with institutional funders, um you know, you have the conversation up front, so are we gonna set big audacious goals together

[00:18:49.82] spk_0:
and if

[00:18:50.61] spk_1:
so we might not achieve them. What are we gonna do when we don’t achieve

[00:18:54.14] spk_0:
them? Right,

[00:19:08.68] spk_1:
Like and having those conversations upfront, what are we gonna do if we do? Because that’s what we’re going for, what are we gonna do if we if we don’t right? And where the course corrections gonna gonna come along the way, you know, I started talking about this idea of micro communication, which is, we tend to think about like big picture communication and big picture messaging and you know, a lot of my work with clients is

[00:19:17.25] spk_0:
developing,

[00:19:38.44] spk_1:
I call them identity statements but mission vision values, purpose statements right? Like you nail that and the rest of your messaging becomes so much easier, right? It just all closed. That’s lead domino. So we always start there. Um, so rightfully so big big ticket, big ticket messaging and communication elements. But increasingly, especially given what happened to our brains and our essential nervous systems with Covid,

[00:19:44.63] spk_0:
I’m

[00:19:45.16] spk_1:
really working with clients about being more attentive and intentional about micro communication. So what’s happening in between the big moments? How are you creating that

[00:19:54.10] spk_0:
connectivity?

[00:19:58.74] spk_1:
Right? And this can be very light touches doesn’t need to be a big deal. But like

[00:19:59.99] spk_0:
what? Give an example of what you’re talking about

[00:20:02.56] spk_1:
text message, right? Like hey, just checking in. We had a, we had a, we had a big day today, you know, we had our, you know, 100 people signed up just wanted you to know, you know, pop them a quick email, we don’t have to like wait rather than waiting for the formal report,

[00:20:16.67] spk_0:
you

[00:20:16.86] spk_1:
know, share the winds as they come in. And even if it’s just, you know, like I’m very attentive to my instincts. Um, you know, your gut, you know, people are like, oh, it’s like, well it actually is millennia

[00:20:28.67] spk_0:
of

[00:20:29.11] spk_1:
information that we all have inside of us. So I’m pretty

[00:20:31.46] spk_0:
attentive anytime

[00:20:32.66] spk_1:
somebody pops on my radar,

[00:20:34.41] spk_0:
follow your instinct. But I’m a huge believer in following your instincts,

[00:20:38.18] spk_1:
right? Like it’s telling you something

[00:20:40.91] spk_0:
anytime

[00:20:45.45] spk_1:
someone just pops on my radar and this is multiple times a day I stop what I’m doing and I pop, it depends on how they like to be communicated with, right? But it could be email. It could be a text, it could be facebook messenger, you know, whatever it’s gonna be. And I just say, hey, you popped on my radar.

[00:20:56.25] spk_0:
Uh, you

[00:20:57.20] spk_1:
know, I’m thinking of

[00:20:59.35] spk_0:
you, you

[00:21:00.20] spk_1:
can do that. You know, in a relationship with your funders and your donors as well. Like I think we’re in a place where a little more humanness is allowable. Um, and actually craved.

[00:21:12.03] spk_0:
Yeah.

[00:21:12.32] spk_1:
And also just from an internal communication perspective, there was an article recently based in Harvard Business review based on some research at the University of pennsylvania. And it was about what staff employees are looking for from their managers. And

[00:21:28.32] spk_0:
um, it was

[00:21:31.29] spk_1:
micro understanding. So this is what got me think about micro communication, right? And micro understanding meaning I don’t want you in my business. I don’t want you to be micromanaging me, I want you to understand me. Don’t you understand what happens for me over the course of my

[00:21:44.41] spk_0:
day because

[00:21:51.65] spk_1:
we are remote or hybrid for the most part, um, definitely not going away. Don’t you understand what that means for me and to me,

[00:21:54.76] spk_0:
so that

[00:21:55.14] spk_1:
was a really interesting evolution and and uh and an invitation for leaders to really be thinking what does micro understanding look like? And then my next step with that is and what is micro

[00:22:05.26] spk_0:
communication based

[00:22:06.98] spk_1:
on that? Right?

[00:22:07.97] spk_0:
All more humanness to like

[00:22:09.81] spk_1:
that Humanness,

[00:22:51.74] spk_0:
more humanity. So then um All right, so uh audacious go well, we talked to them about, you know, having audacious goals. Not not that goes back to you know, not playing small and safe and no, and that’s where this yes, our our digression on failure and micro communications came when I said it may not be the right place for you. What I meant was you know, if if leadership is not accommodating at you know, at least accommodating being audacious willingness to fail. Uh you know, then you have to evaluate whether that culture can change and if you’re not sure that it can evaluate whether that culture is the right place for you. That so that that was you know, I’ve

[00:23:02.98] spk_1:
also worked with um you know, leaders who

[00:23:08.55] spk_0:
were they

[00:23:09.18] spk_1:
are genuinely risk averse,

[00:23:10.74] spk_0:
but

[00:23:24.71] spk_1:
that does not, that doesn’t fire them up. It makes it very uncomfortable, right? So I just wanna say on the other side of it, you know, just is it a culture fit for you can be anywhere along that continuum. But I I love the question right? Like is this a fit for me? Right? I feel like so often

[00:23:30.51] spk_0:
we’re

[00:23:31.33] spk_1:
like, you know, when I, when I teach at the university of Washington in the oven school, the public policy and governance, um when I talk to my students and I mainly work with graduate students, so they’re getting their master’s degrees, They’re like rock stars, they’re amazing, they’re just amazing. And they get to the point in the, you know, in their time and they’re interviewing for jobs. And I always say to them, is

[00:23:51.91] spk_0:
when

[00:24:03.67] spk_1:
they’re making you the offer, you you you are in the power position, ask for what you want because it’s like, oh my God, they want me and then you don’t negotiate because you’re like, oh, they, they like me. Oh, and I’m like, no, no, no, no, no, no, no, no. You hold all the cards in that

[00:24:09.85] spk_0:
moment.

[00:24:10.69] spk_1:
They don’t want to go through that again. You hold all the cards and it’s sort of similar like,

[00:24:16.40] spk_0:
and we’re seeing this

[00:24:24.37] spk_1:
with quiet quitting and, you know, a lot of other movements. It’s like this openness, like maybe this isn’t what I want. And so there’s a lot of, you know, downsides and tough stuff happening right now obviously,

[00:24:29.74] spk_0:
but I think of

[00:24:51.07] spk_1:
bright, I mean I’m I’m a total optimist by nature. Um so I’m always looking for the silver lining in the bright spots while acknowledging the darkness um is this for me, is this what I want? Is this who I want to be? Is this where I want to be? You know, like there’s just a different and that that’s like authoring your life and I want to, I just want to invite listeners to like, this is your one, this is it, Right?

[00:24:57.13] spk_0:
Uh

[00:24:58.55] spk_1:
and you’re wonderful.

[00:24:59.98] spk_0:
And

[00:25:08.49] spk_1:
so are you offering your life, are you like making it happen for you as opposed to like that? It’s happening to me, stance is demoralizing and again, from a leadership perspective, are you inviting that sense

[00:25:12.76] spk_0:
of,

[00:25:13.71] spk_1:
is this for me? How is this for me? Um and encouraging

[00:25:17.32] spk_0:
that regardless

[00:25:18.75] spk_1:
of your risk tolerance by the way?

[00:26:28.28] spk_0:
Right. Right. I love the idea of making the life that you want, not defaulting into the life that lots of other people have made before you just because you know, and that might be taking a year or two off before, you know, to do, to do volunteer work or to travel and you know, there there are myriad different ways. It involves your personal relationships, your, your professional relationships, your relationship with family. I mean turn this into a therapy session, but intentional about the life that you make for yourself and a significant part of that, although it seems like maybe in declining proportion, but still significant is your work. The work you do. The reason I say that maybe in declining proportion is because since the pandemic, I think work has become less significant to large swaths of, I don’t know about the world. So I’ll just focus on our country. I think work has become less or

[00:26:39.98] spk_1:
at least differently significant. Like the way I’m experiencing it with my clients and you know, friends and colleagues, it’s differently significant, which isn’t good or bad, but it does feel different, right? Like it’s holding different space in people’s lives. And I think part of that is the sense of agency that’s

[00:26:46.61] spk_0:
like maybe it doesn’t

[00:26:47.85] spk_1:
have to look like this. And also by the way, you can honor,

[00:26:51.11] spk_0:
you

[00:26:59.26] spk_1:
could like, you know, I’m a woman. I like there are women who carved the path so that I could do what I want to do and I honor

[00:27:00.05] spk_0:
that while

[00:27:01.57] spk_1:
doing things differently and while doing them on my own terms, like you can hold both of that and I think sometimes it can feel a little like, but this is how insert person who’s important to you or who you respect, did things you can respect and honor that

[00:27:15.20] spk_0:
and do

[00:27:16.59] spk_1:
it your own way.

[00:27:17.36] spk_0:
Yeah, we can hold both these

[00:27:18.73] spk_1:
thoughts. You can hold both

[00:27:29.36] spk_0:
of course. Alright, well I made us digress from uh strict marketing communication. So let’s let’s go a little back. Um true believers. We have you want us to find true believers, help us. What are what are, who are our true believers and or what are they in the abstract And how do we find our

[00:27:59.69] spk_1:
okay, so in the world for marketing, generally speaking, in particular for nonprofits? There are three types of body of people in your audience is okay. And I’m not using these terms in their religious sense, using them sort of neutrally. Okay believers, agnostics and atheists. So believers believe what you believe. If you are on a mission to eradicate extreme global poverty, they’re like, yes to that. If it’s too, you know, spayed and neutered dogs and their yes to that, right? They believe what you believe. Agnostics might believe what you believe.

[00:28:14.55] spk_0:
Um, but

[00:28:15.88] spk_1:
you need to persuade them a little bit, right? Maybe it’s not top of their list or maybe it’s like, how you do it or whatever, but they’re they’re removable, right? You can, you can,

[00:28:23.26] spk_0:
you

[00:28:25.06] spk_1:
know, so you might think of them as like uninitiated believers.

[00:28:28.81] spk_0:
Okay.

[00:28:34.04] spk_1:
But they’re they’re they’re in the middle and then atheists don’t believe what you believe. And um, so one thing that comes up is it feels fantastic to convert an atheist, right? Like any time I do a big public talk and we talk about this, there’s always somebody who never believes, like, yeah, but there was this guy and you know, he was, he was against us. He was again, you know, we really kept working on him and now he’s a, you know, he’s a donor. My question back is that’s great. But what was the opportunity cost of converting one? Atheist versus connecting with 1000

[00:29:01.34] spk_0:
believers

[00:29:02.58] spk_1:
like which one? Which one is advancing your mission more dramatically? I mean, except in the world of politics, I just wanna, that’s the caveat, that’s its own little different things.

[00:29:12.90] spk_0:
Um, it’s

[00:29:14.91] spk_1:
all about connecting with your, with your believers.

[00:31:38.28] spk_0:
It’s time for Tony’s take two. It’s planned giving accelerator season. I’m giving 50% off the full tuition for the month of january. So all this month, 50% off full tuition. The class starts in early March 1st week of March and will be done by Memorial Day. It’s a three month class. You’ll spend an hour a week with me. Well that may not be the biggest selling point. You’ll spend an hour a week with your, who will become your friends in our zoom meetings always set up as meetings, not webinars. If you know the difference, you’ll know that you can talk to each other. There’s no, there’s no putting questions and comments in a chat box always set up as meetings. These folks will become your friends. They will be similarly situated in small and midsize nonprofits wanting to launch planned giving. All right. This is, this is what we do together. Oh and and I am there too. And I’m teaching and you know, I’ll be guiding you, giving you the resources you need, like sample, um, Uh, donor letters, template letters, um, marketing materials? Uh, a power point for when you talk to your board and that’ll be one of the meetings we have together is acquainting your board with planned giving and perhaps soliciting your board, identifying your top prospects and soliciting them, identifying your tier two prospects and identifying them, etc. All the info is at planned giving accelerator dot com. I hope you’ll be with me, love to have you. And that’s Tony’s take two. We’ve got boo koo but loads more time for overcome common communications conundrums with Erica Mills Barnhart. Give us some, give us some ideas about how to, how to get, maybe get somebody from agnostic to, uh, to believe her. Those people are those, they work the return on investment. The agnostic community.

[00:31:50.77] spk_1:
Yeah. You know, for the most part, you have to be doing both. So, so a lot of marketing those optimization, right? So it’s for whom are we optimizing? Um, and in general,

[00:31:52.86] spk_0:
if you’re

[00:31:53.42] spk_1:
optimizing well, like with your messaging, right? So, so you have a message and it really speaks to the hopes Dreams, wants needs

[00:32:00.22] spk_0:
of

[00:32:01.22] spk_1:
your believers. That’s gonna be enough to like get your agnostics interest is going to perk up their ears for your believers. They’re like woo. And you’re off to the races for your agnostics. Um,

[00:32:13.34] spk_0:
it’s gonna take

[00:32:14.01] spk_1:
just a little more conversation,

[00:32:15.80] spk_0:
right?

[00:32:16.70] spk_1:
And so, you know, questions are your friend,

[00:32:20.07] spk_0:
like

[00:32:32.25] spk_1:
we default into this. Like if I tell them everything out of the gate, then maybe I’ll hit on something and that is interesting to them and you end up just like, right? And I always say when you tell someone everything, they remember nothing and that comes from like a worried place actually, right? So again, like that you’re gonna hear a theme which is

[00:32:38.05] spk_0:
like you’re

[00:32:39.37] spk_1:
the authority

[00:32:40.86] spk_0:
in

[00:32:41.13] spk_1:
what your organization does show up as the authority ask questions, right? Because the answers to the question, that’s how you’re gonna get that, then you know what they’re interested in and you can feel a little scary at first to do this. If again, if it’s not we’re used to doing or that’s not the culture, um,

[00:32:58.53] spk_0:
get

[00:32:58.82] spk_1:
them, you know, ask questions, just find out

[00:33:00.99] spk_0:
what, what

[00:33:02.42] spk_1:
is it about, what you do specifically? So it’s like there’s a level of specificity and understanding agnostics that you need to move them might refer to it as an engagement cycle. From knowing the organization to understanding the organization, to engaging

[00:33:17.89] spk_0:
believers

[00:33:18.63] spk_1:
move along that cycle real quickly.

[00:33:20.35] spk_0:
You need

[00:33:21.07] spk_1:
to spend more time that zone of understanding and helping them understand what you do with agnostics.

[00:33:27.72] spk_0:
Is this all consistent with uh Simon Sinek, his his core belief that people don’t buy what you what won’t buy, what you don’t buy what you do, they buy, why you do

[00:33:41.92] spk_1:
it

[00:33:46.23] spk_0:
consistent? Okay, okay, so say a little more about the engagement cycle now, you can’t shortchange non profit listeners with like a 12th drive by of the engagement cycle.

[00:34:15.73] spk_1:
I mean marketing and messaging is like very fundamentally all about moving folks around this engagement cycle. And it actually doesn’t matter if you’re like buying toothpaste or you’re trying to get, you know, a new donor. It’s like everyone has to go from knowing to understanding to engaging. And I got, I got specific about this because what can happen, this is unique to nonprofits is because we care so deeply and passionately about what we’re doing. There’s kind of this like to know me is to love me, to know me is to engage, why wouldn’t

[00:34:24.05] spk_0:
you Right?

[00:34:25.73] spk_1:
And then you skip over

[00:34:28.43] spk_0:
the

[00:34:38.12] spk_1:
understand phase and, and that’s really a miss and it’s a miss because like let’s take the events I pick on events a lot. Um, events are a classic example of moving someone from knowing to engaging right? Like I care about something I invite you tony and some other folks to sit at my table at, you know, the lunch and the dinner you come because you know me, maybe you care maybe you don’t and then there’s an

[00:34:53.45] spk_0:
ask rightfully.

[00:34:54.84] spk_1:
So, you know, we should ask for the support.

[00:34:58.51] spk_0:
But if

[00:34:58.93] spk_1:
you go from no to engage that

[00:35:00.39] spk_0:
quickly and

[00:35:08.97] spk_1:
you don’t plan and this is what I see again and again and again with nonprofits is there isn’t a plan for, okay, how am I going to go back to tony and

[00:35:09.71] spk_0:
sort of,

[00:35:10.38] spk_1:
you know, back up the caboose like understanding what what you tony care about as it relates to my organization.

[00:35:15.74] spk_0:
The important follow up

[00:35:22.23] spk_1:
the important what Yes, very intentional follow up. Um, and this is where you know, like retention comes into play, but it’s really interesting. Like you know, you say these things just like, why wouldn’t you do that? That’s weird. Why are you saying that out loud? Of course you would do that. It’s, it’s stunning how often it doesn’t happen. And it is this like really fabulous.

[00:35:38.80] spk_0:
Well tony

[00:35:39.55] spk_1:
Gave money of course he loves what we do and we lump, you know, then we lump you in with somebody who’s given to the organization for five

[00:35:45.40] spk_0:
years now.

[00:35:49.29] spk_1:
Your current donor, not everybody does this. I’m sure listeners, I’m sure there’s some of you like, no, no, we nailed it on the follow up. Like, you know, that’s not so I’m, I’m painting a wide with wide

[00:35:58.73] spk_0:
broad

[00:36:05.49] spk_1:
brush strokes here. But I have seen this so often. Um, and it’s heartbreaking because then you don’t, you know, maybe you don’t come back to the event the next year. You haven’t been nurtured and then your one time donor and that’s super

[00:36:12.46] spk_0:
expensive. That

[00:36:13.86] spk_1:
is low R. O I

[00:36:15.74] spk_0:
I

[00:36:15.97] spk_1:
want the highest return on investment possible.

[00:36:23.45] spk_0:
I’m guessing you’re a big believer in segmentation. Yes, I believe segmentation,

[00:36:26.43] spk_1:
but but not over segmenting.

[00:36:29.46] spk_0:
I

[00:36:29.89] spk_1:
feel like given some of the databases that we

[00:36:32.20] spk_0:
have,

[00:36:36.46] spk_1:
you can almost use it as a stalling tactic like well we’re not ready to like send out our appeals because we haven’t you know, segmented enough. So I just like it’s

[00:36:44.03] spk_0:
it’s a

[00:36:52.28] spk_1:
bit of an art. There’s an art to the segmentation in addition to the science. So yes. I’m a fan of segmenting. Um and not crossing the line into over segmentation as sort of a stalling tactic to doing the work.

[00:36:59.11] spk_0:
All right. I’m not I’m not clear on this. I mean anything. Yeah, I agree. I mean anything can be overdone and used as a used as an excuse uh as an excuse for immobility. What what what is what what’s over segmentation? Like what’s

[00:37:15.61] spk_1:
your database rather than sending out the appeal?

[00:37:17.85] spk_0:
Oh okay.

[00:37:20.95] spk_1:
Yeah.

[00:37:22.33] spk_0:
And and segmenting we want to segment right by interest. Maybe if we know someone is interested in the spay neuter program then then those are the those are the touch points. Those are the data points. Those are the stories we’re gonna share with them. Not the uh not the adoption, not the adoption and rescue program.

[00:38:06.00] spk_1:
Yeah exactly. Like what are what are their interests? And so you know any organization will know in advance. Like here’s kind of our top three top three things we do. Top three ways that we services, we offer our ways that we go about um taking care of animals. Um So you start there again offering, right? So yes you want the information and you know your organization best. So start there and then you can put people in the file folders as it were.

[00:38:20.57] spk_0:
And you’re gonna find out what their interests are, not only by their giving, but by asking the questions that you were talking about earlier. You know, what, what moves you about our work? What brought you to us? What do you love? And

[00:38:21.93] spk_1:
how do you like to be communicated with?

[00:38:24.28] spk_0:
Yeah,

[00:38:32.28] spk_1:
we have like a pretty strong email default setting now, I would say. Um, not everybody loves

[00:38:34.26] spk_0:
that. You

[00:38:46.37] spk_1:
know, I’m seeing, I have clients who are having great success with kind of not, not not doing email. That’s always gonna be a part of what you’re doing. But taking the time to like, actually, you know, back to snail mail. Um, you know, really working direct mail. I feel like direct mail is like having to come back.

[00:38:54.25] spk_0:
Yeah. It’s always strong. I think it’s always so

[00:38:57.88] spk_1:
much stronger than people. Whenever I like show the stats on direct mail, they’re like, what?

[00:39:01.91] spk_0:
Especially when you’re writing to people who love you already. Your mail is not their junk mail, they’re giving to you. They’re supporting you. They’re spending either their time or their money with you. They’re gonna open your letters.

[00:39:24.27] spk_1:
Yeah. I spent a lot of time talking about delight with my clients. How can you delight them? And it’s, it’s just, I mean, it’s a delightful conversation to talk about delight a lot of the work, You know that that nonprofits do is it’s heavy, it’s hard. Um

[00:39:36.19] spk_0:
And so delight

[00:39:36.92] spk_1:
can feel a little antithetical uh trivializing the work. And so I’m not trying to, you know, don’t trivialize the work and don’t trivialize what you’re sharing. Um But can you can you create delight in

[00:39:50.65] spk_0:
how

[00:39:51.08] spk_1:
it is delivered in some form or fashion? I think delight is a gift um in this day and age and it activates people’s particular activating system, which is opens, opens them up to whatever comes next. It

[00:40:03.25] spk_0:
also sounds like fun, right? You can be willing to have fun. Don’t be afraid to have fun. Right?

[00:40:08.60] spk_1:
Yes.

[00:40:10.03] spk_0:
Fun. Yeah.

[00:40:11.83] spk_1:
Yeah. I mean listeners can’t see it, but I do have a string

[00:40:14.33] spk_0:
of holiday

[00:40:15.77] spk_1:
lights around my neck.

[00:40:16.75] spk_0:
I was thinking about saying it right this minute to yeah, got christmas lights multicolor.

[00:40:21.22] spk_1:
I mean it’s been an intense year.

[00:40:24.21] spk_0:
It’s a necklace necklace of

[00:40:25.80] spk_1:
christmas.

[00:40:26.68] spk_0:
The old, the old style big bulb type, not the

[00:40:30.09] spk_1:
right. Yeah. There’s nothing, there’s nothing sophisticated about these lights

[00:40:35.05] spk_0:
there.

[00:40:39.10] spk_1:
Dr Seuss lights. And I put it on this morning cause I’m, you know, I’m talking with you and I like have a lot of stuff and I’m like let’s have a lot of fun

[00:40:56.85] spk_0:
please please do? Alright, we still have more time together. E. M. B. Erica Mills Barnhart. What else, what else would you like to talk about marketing doing it differently. Thinking differently that we haven’t talked about yet.

[00:41:23.14] spk_1:
You know, one of the things I, this is not a unique to me type of thing, but I really invite listeners to think about what they can let go of to do less. What I consistently see is organizations doing too many things. Um and often the reason for that is far more like fear of missing out often, often to double down that this comes from board members. So if you’re a board member listening, you may have a fabulous idea for marketing, Thank you very much for that. And

[00:41:32.87] spk_0:
go

[00:42:05.73] spk_1:
back to the klaxon method, what does success look like? Who’s our target audience? So does your idea, which is a, how is that really going to resonate with the target market? This is why working the method is so important. Part of it. It grew out of like I wanted a way for to kind of mitigate positional authority negatively impacting marketing outcomes, right? Because if you’re a staff member it can be tough to say no right, It really can be. And so then you end up with kind of a bloated number of marketing activities that you’re doing. Um so it’s early in the year, like the work I’m gonna be doing with clients and I am hosting monthly free Ask me Anything sessions starting in january 2023 So you’re listening and you’re curious, come to come to an A. M. A. Right? Like what can I take off my plate? I’ve been doing this so long that it’s, and I’m right, I’m objective. So I can be like, don’t do that.

[00:42:25.49] spk_0:
Take that. Where can we learn about the go to

[00:42:35.03] spk_1:
Klaxon dash communication dot com, backslash newsletter sign up because it’s for newsletter subscribers. That’s how you’re going to find out about like get the zoom link and all

[00:42:39.53] spk_0:
that. You say dash. I say hyphen hyphen. Okay. You don’t mind hyphen.

[00:42:43.99] spk_1:
Maybe that’s an east coast west coast thing.

[00:42:50.91] spk_0:
Maybe it is Klaxon dash Klaxon hyphen. You say you would say dot com though, right? You wouldn’t say that period

[00:42:55.32] spk_1:
correct. I just think about that. Yeah. Dot com. Dot org.

[00:43:01.43] spk_0:
It’s your company. Use dash. I just, I don’t know. I learned hyphen maybe in law school. Maybe I learned hyphen in law school. I don’t know.

[00:43:07.86] spk_1:
Oh, 100% seems lawyer lawyerly.

[00:43:11.04] spk_0:
It sounds like it’s

[00:43:11.94] spk_1:
very technically accurate,

[00:43:13.49] spk_0:
right? Like aiding and abetting it’s, you know, you have to duplicate the words in case you didn’t get it with aiding. Like I gotta, I gotta double down with abetting. Yeah.

[00:43:29.28] spk_1:
So that’s one thing I would say and part of it is like I just want to, I give all your listeners and all non profit people? Just a permission slip to do less.

[00:43:30.40] spk_0:
What kinds of things, what kinds of things we do less of?

[00:43:37.36] spk_1:
Don’t be on so many social media channels, knock it off. You don’t need to be on all of them unless you are a very, very large organization, which as we all know listeners. So there aren’t that many nonprofits that are big enough to support

[00:43:46.64] spk_0:
the very big right University of Washington is not listening to us

[00:43:50.29] spk_1:
go dogs. But no, they’re not

[00:44:05.61] spk_0:
Erica is in Seattle Seattle Washington. Um, well we just talked, well, my guests just last week, I talked about what’s going on twitter amy sample ward and you know, for the new year, whether whether you want twitter maybe, you know, her advice was just evaluated objectively.

[00:44:12.81] spk_1:
I literally tony Just had this conversation with my client yesterday. One of them was

[00:44:16.92] spk_0:
a good time to think, take a step back,

[00:44:20.96] spk_1:
take a step back. But,

[00:44:21.75] spk_0:
and, and

[00:44:23.22] spk_1:
you know that, that I don’t, I mean I haven’t listened yet what Amy said, but I do and believe everything Amy says by the way, she’s brilliant.

[00:44:30.47] spk_0:
She’s on, she’s on all the time. You know, Amy sample

[00:44:32.58] spk_1:
ward. Yeah,

[00:44:33.78] spk_0:
she’s a regular. She’s my, our technology and social media contributor on the show.

[00:44:39.47] spk_1:
Yeah, way back when I worked for an organization called End Power. So we put technology into the hands of nonprofits and so we

[00:44:46.10] spk_0:
started

[00:44:55.61] spk_1:
crossing paths then. So we’ve orbited for a long time. Um, it’s a values decision to a certain extent. Right? So just with that twitter piece, she spoke to this?

[00:44:57.62] spk_0:
Here’s the like, yeah,

[00:44:59.42] spk_1:
are, are, are are people there? So who’s your target audience? If so Okay, that’s that’s one piece of equation but also like how does this align with our values as an organization? So that that’s really twitter is really a twofold choice whereas the rest of them

[00:45:11.82] spk_0:
um you

[00:45:13.18] spk_1:
know, linkedin facebook, I would,

[00:45:15.95] spk_0:
what

[00:45:17.75] spk_1:
I generally say is beyond one.

[00:45:21.37] spk_0:
Yeah,

[00:45:22.83] spk_1:
Beyond one. Be fully on one be the organization where if you’re on linkedin and you, you know, you’ve got the algorithm going for you. People are like, Oh my God, it’s you know, it’s so and so again insert the name of your organization like that. It’s your omnipresent.

[00:45:38.34] spk_0:
I

[00:45:41.71] spk_1:
Would rather have the clients be omnipresent on one channel Then sort of, you know, not even blinking onto the radar of the 17 different social media. I mean there’s a hit parade of five basically, but I’d rather have you beyond present on one once you have that nail.

[00:45:53.03] spk_0:
I had

[00:45:53.33] spk_1:
Another, you know, some organizations can do to it’s fine, but even at two. oftentimes I see

[00:46:00.19] spk_0:
diminishing diminishing

[00:46:01.63] spk_1:
returns for clients.

[00:46:02.77] spk_0:
I

[00:46:07.65] spk_1:
mean I run a communication firm right here on Lincoln period full stop.

[00:46:12.03] spk_0:
What what’s well at Erica mills barn, is that not?

[00:46:16.03] spk_1:
Yeah, yeah, that was my choice to sort of be the face of

[00:46:19.37] spk_0:
um

[00:46:20.22] spk_1:
so that’s our

[00:46:21.38] spk_0:
the company. Okay, so the company is strictly on linkedin,

[00:46:24.59] spk_1:
yep. Gotcha.

[00:46:25.67] spk_0:
Okay. Klaxon, yep. Alright permission to do less

[00:46:30.32] spk_1:
permission to do less permission to less because you’re going to do it better and you’re gonna feel like

[00:46:36.56] spk_0:
just you’re going to

[00:47:10.03] spk_1:
feel the energy of it. And I actually, because I do have, you know, people call it street, but actually it’s quantum physics um and metaphysics, which is like, if you’re on, I’m gonna make this up, right? If you’re on five channels right now where you’re doing five or six things, I want you to write each of them on a piece of paper. I want you to go what who, how make a strategic informed choice about which you’re gonna keep and the ones that you’re gonna release, you’re gonna go burn the scrap of paper. It is so gratifying and there’s something energetically about that. I mean, one of the things that I talked about a lot is the energetic of language in general, right? So words, we hear words matter, Words matter because they actually are matter.

[00:47:21.88] spk_0:
Um

[00:47:22.19] spk_1:
So they abide by all of the universal laws of physics and thermodynamics, just like anything else. So, the words themselves have energy.

[00:47:30.61] spk_0:
Every

[00:47:31.39] spk_1:
word has its own energy, the way you deliver it can shift the energy right? Um and so as you’re like, that’s why just releasing and having to change form is really an important part of the process. Plus it’s

[00:47:43.26] spk_0:
fun theme

[00:47:46.41] spk_1:
of the day, it’s fun, but I mean, you know, be safe about your burning and I’m not like suggesting

[00:47:50.73] spk_0:
you may not be

[00:47:52.11] spk_1:
safe and have fun with burning things, but

[00:47:55.30] spk_0:
um,

[00:47:56.13] spk_1:
it really helps because otherwise there’s going to be this niggle that’s like, oh, but we still have that like profile up so maybe we should be doing something or yeah, just release that for yourself. Political,

[00:48:06.52] spk_0:
you deserve it.

[00:48:08.10] spk_1:
But every single person listening deserves to do what they’re doing in a way that feels amazing to them.

[00:48:15.15] spk_0:
Alright, that’s empowering. That’s

[00:48:16.80] spk_1:
empowering.

[00:48:18.90] spk_0:
So words follow the laws of physics and thermodynamics.

[00:48:27.09] spk_1:
Their energy. They’re literally

[00:48:27.78] spk_0:
energy, right?

[00:48:29.10] spk_1:
Because they’re matter

[00:48:43.79] spk_0:
words are matter. Well paper that words could be written on his matter, but aren’t the words ephemeral and why

[00:48:44.04] spk_1:
would they be?

[00:48:55.19] spk_0:
Because they’re vocalized. Yeah. So they don’t they, they vaporize after they’ve been articulated

[00:48:56.50] spk_1:
tony Has anybody said ever said anything to you that hurt your feelings?

[00:49:00.03] spk_0:
Sure.

[00:49:02.43] spk_1:
Did that feeling vaporized as soon as the words left their mouth?

[00:49:10.40] spk_0:
No, Yeah, we’re

[00:49:13.77] spk_1:
trained to think of them as ephemeral and they are not their energy.

[00:49:17.70] spk_0:
Hmm

[00:49:18.83] spk_1:
Yeah, that blows people’s minds most the time. Your listeners are like, oh my God, they’re talking about, what are they talking about now? So let me get concrete about this. I mean, I love talking about it

[00:49:28.88] spk_0:
at

[00:49:29.08] spk_1:
this level, but I want to make this practical for listeners. Um, this, so when I’m creating like identity statements, mission vision values purpose. Um, we look at and there’s a tool were to fire dot

[00:49:40.23] spk_0:
com, you can

[00:49:44.81] spk_1:
go there, you can put in any word you want. Um, and it is a massive database powers is we pulled every single word of 2503 nonprofit websites. This allowed us to generalize to the entire sector at a 95% confidence interval for any of my fellow geeks out there. That’s what, that’s the bar that you want. Right? So you can go there, put in any word you want and it’s going to tell you it’s going to give you a red, orange or

[00:50:05.36] spk_0:
green.

[00:50:06.76] spk_1:
Red means this is, this word is used a lot by nonprofits a lot. So you, you, it’s not gonna, people are gonna notice it.

[00:50:14.84] spk_0:
Impact, impact

[00:50:17.30] spk_1:
is up there. I’ll tell you, I always joke that provide is the lamest verb ever. Verbs are very

[00:50:22.37] spk_0:
important. It’s

[00:50:24.02] spk_1:
The 4th most used

[00:50:24.92] spk_0:
verb by

[00:50:25.98] spk_1:
nonprofit. So what that means is no one’s going to notice that

[00:50:28.60] spk_0:
verb

[00:50:29.61] spk_1:
and verbs represent the change that you’re committed to creating the world world

[00:50:33.83] spk_0:
and so you

[00:50:34.36] spk_1:
want a verb that’s like, oh,

[00:50:35.86] spk_0:
okay, interesting.

[00:51:21.37] spk_1:
Okay. Um, so there’s always a better verb can provide so you can put that in and, and, and the green ones so you can get some, you know, synergy is still green. It’s not saying like definitely use it. It is giving you feedback about the extent to which somebody is probably going to notice the word or not. So, so in language we have function words and content words, function words are like the and but like our brains don’t register those because our brains can’t register everything right? Like our subconscious mind is processing 11 million bits of information per second. And that’s condensed into like 40 ish pieces of information for our conscious mind. So our brains are very efficient because they have to be and so for a messaging perspective, you

[00:51:24.35] spk_0:
Know, your your your light bulb necklaces overloading my my my conscious and subconscious processing like 20 million bits a second because I got I got these lights. It’s a good thing you didn’t put them. I asked her to put them on flashing and she said no, give me a headache. It’s a good thing. You didn’t do that. I’m sorry, go ahead. I’m sorry.

[00:52:02.28] spk_1:
Yeah. So that’s why, you know, when we’re creating and again, this is the most important set of statements that you’re ever gonna write as an organization. So it’s worth the investment to do it well. And you’re looking for like that combination of like, oh yeah, that makes sense. And like, oh that would interest me. I’m not used to seeing that quite in that context. You know, that’s the art. That’s why like after 20 years of working with organizations writing those. I never get tired of that. That’s just

[00:52:12.03] spk_0:
fun. You like to read fiction.

[00:52:14.56] spk_1:
Yeah, I read

[00:52:55.90] spk_0:
fiction fiction much more than non more southern nonfiction use of use of language word word choice. You know, it sometimes it stops me. I don’t read I don’t read that much fiction actually. But when I do you know someone’s word choices. Oh man she wrote she wrote that he threaded them through the narrow pathway, not that he led them or or took them, he threaded them through the narrow pathway that happens to be part of a book that it stays with me. See words words, words follow the laws of physics and thermodynamics. I told you that you thought they were ephemeral her, you know this is Joyce. Uh

[00:52:59.39] spk_1:
it is one of those things that can we just pause on this for a second.

[00:53:01.75] spk_0:
Like every

[00:53:03.01] spk_1:
time when I first talked about that with somebody shared their like wait my range is hurt and then you’re like,

[00:53:08.62] spk_0:
oh that makes a lot of sense. Like

[00:53:10.60] spk_1:
once you see it you see it. Yeah,

[00:53:12.28] spk_0:
well you grounded it well and you know, hurtful, hurtful words and also

[00:53:16.03] spk_1:
start to go there positive

[00:53:17.05] spk_0:
positive words.

[00:53:18.10] spk_1:
Yeah, like sorry,

[00:53:21.84] spk_0:
thoughtful, thoughtful words could get me going for a month. I can think about, oh she she took the show to her board and it led to a discussion which led to an action and you know, I could go on six months on that. So yeah, okay.

[00:53:33.03] spk_1:
Either way words are on a continuum just like all energetic things are on a continuum. But yeah, but they but they do either have a negative or positive charge. So

[00:53:43.26] spk_0:
is that your background? You have a degree in physics sciences? No, my

[00:53:47.72] spk_1:
dad was a professor

[00:53:50.29] spk_0:
of

[00:54:06.08] spk_1:
engineering. I artfully um didn’t do any, I didn’t do chemistry. I didn’t do physics. I like avoided everything in that realm. But later I really started seeing like it’s um

[00:54:07.13] spk_0:
how

[00:54:08.27] spk_1:
relevant is everything in life. So I sort of did more self study, but I do just I do run things past my dad. Like when I landed on that, I think I think words abide by all the so I sent my dad a note and he said, let me think about that for a little bit. He came back and he said, yes,

[00:54:24.36] spk_0:
you’re right.

[00:54:27.76] spk_1:
So I press your test all of these things because I do not have a background in it

[00:54:43.60] spk_0:
on your dad’s responses. Classic engineer. Let me think. Let me think about the problem. I think about the question. You think about the question and the solution and the answer. All right. But you sound like me. Like I took physics for poets in college. No,

[00:54:44.82] spk_1:
my daughter is a senior, so she’s applying to colleges and graduate.

[00:54:50.34] spk_0:
My

[00:54:50.95] spk_1:
daughter is a senior

[00:54:52.51] spk_0:
in

[00:54:53.10] spk_1:
high school. And so the other day, she said, mom didn’t you you like majored in french and political science, didn’t you? As an undergrad?

[00:55:00.38] spk_0:
And I was like, yeah,

[00:55:03.40] spk_1:
she’s like why? It’s like, I don’t know, you know, I’ve done fine, so, but she is very much, you know, she wants to be a neuroscientist and she’s very,

[00:55:11.53] spk_0:
she follows her grandfather sciences strictly rooted in the sciences Alright. Yeah. Where did your dad teach, Where did your dad teach?

[00:55:19.02] spk_1:
University of british Columbia?

[00:55:21.74] spk_0:
You

[00:55:23.22] spk_1:
will notice like a little weirdness to have

[00:55:25.79] spk_0:
A little further north in Seattle, right, you’re from Vancouver, two

[00:55:35.33] spk_1:
Hours north of here, you hit the border about 45 minutes past that you get to Vancouver, that’s why I still say a couple of things weird like my mom and passed and I’ve been places

[00:55:39.43] spk_0:
because that’s where I was born. Your mom being right, why don’t you leave us with some inspiration, Erica Mills,

[00:55:46.04] spk_1:
tony Come

[00:55:48.64] spk_0:
on, take us out with, take us out with good marketing inspiration, you’re loaded with it. What do you come in? Come on, this is a walk in the park for you.

[00:56:46.73] spk_1:
I’m going to double down on some of the things I said, I really, I mean I’m kind of on a bender about do less, be kinder to yourself by doing less, really want that. I want that for every listener, I want it for their teams. I want for their families, I want for everybody. We’ve just gone through so much tough stuff. Um one of the questions that I love playing with that, I always play with with my, especially my my leadership, you know my leaders who I do coaching with is like how can you make it easy, Like oftentimes we make things harder than they need to be, I am notoriously fabulous and making things really complicated. Um and a couple years ago I just started asking like how can I make this easy? What’s the easiest way to do this and easy in the sense of easy? Maybe it’s for you, how do you make it easier for you, for your team, for the organization, right? Like just without losing or negating or minimizing the importance of the work

[00:56:50.13] spk_0:
that that

[00:56:50.77] spk_1:
that you know, listeners are doing, there’s almost always a way to just make it a little easier and let me tell you there’s always a way to make your marketing easier. Always, always, always. I mean it’s why I have, like listeners have heard some of the methods and the frameworks that I use, that’s why I’m such a fan of creating them and mine are all super

[00:57:08.60] spk_0:
simple.

[00:57:10.18] spk_1:
And the reason for that is because I want to make it easier. Like I want to free up that energetic space

[00:57:17.64] spk_0:
for

[00:57:18.03] spk_1:
you to be focusing on the substance of what you’re doing on the way in which you’re changing the world. Um You know, marketing communication isn’t rocket science, it’s actually pretty darn straightforward. Um and so let’s let’s make that as easy as possible.

[00:57:32.35] spk_0:
We also doubled down on have more fun, have

[00:57:35.50] spk_1:
more fun. I mean by the way that’s giving myself a permission slip. Um it’s you know, it’s easy, like if especially I love the work I do. I mean I truly it it lights me up. Ha

[00:57:46.81] spk_0:
um ha

[00:57:48.50] spk_1:
ha because okay I do have light bulbs around my neck. Um

[00:57:54.63] spk_0:
but this

[00:58:04.60] spk_1:
work can it can be heavy and getting, you know, the stakes feel high. I have some really high profile clients um you know, I need to get it right with them and for them. Um and I think that it can be we can forget to have fun,

[00:58:10.11] spk_0:
you

[00:58:10.32] spk_1:
know, we can forget to have fun. So like fun.

[00:58:12.62] spk_0:
Don’t forget

[00:58:13.35] spk_1:
Spaciousness. I always like come up with three words for the year.

[00:58:18.59] spk_0:
That’s

[00:58:19.07] spk_1:
pretty fun if listeners don’t do that. That’s a beautiful way to set the stage for the year ahead for yourself.

[00:58:23.54] spk_0:
You have three words for 2023?

[00:58:25.47] spk_1:
I do.

[00:58:27.14] spk_0:
Well no no we’re gonna wrap it up,

[00:58:31.87] spk_1:
we’re gonna leave people like wondering you can reach out

[00:58:35.17] spk_0:
Right? You have to reach Erica Yes. If you want the three words, what are the three words for 2023

[00:58:39.79] spk_1:
spaciousness, vitality and play,

[00:58:58.65] spk_0:
spaciousness, vitality and play. Alright, spacious while we talk to permission to permission to do less permission to have fun. Play play and vitality Yeah.

[00:59:00.32] spk_1:
tony And I’m gonna ask what yours are, I’m gonna I’m gonna email you in a couple of weeks.

[00:59:31.24] spk_0:
Okay because we’re recording in december. So I don’t have mine yet but we’ll we’ll go we’ll go out with yours spaciousness, vitality and play BMB. Erica Mills Barnhart, communication expert, speaker author coach. You’ll find her at Erica Mills barn and her company at klaxon hyphen or dash communication dot com. Erica Thank you very much. Real pleasure so

[00:59:33.23] spk_1:
much for having me. tony I really appreciate it. It’s been great

[01:00:11.41] spk_0:
next week the 2023 fundraising outlook report from one cause if you missed any part of this week’s show, I beseech you find it at tony-martignetti dot com. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff. The shows, social media is by Susan Chavez. Marc Silverman is our web guy and this music is by scott Stein, Thank you for that. Affirmation Scotty B with me next week for nonprofit radio big nonprofit ideas for the other 95 go out and be great.