Monday, December 04, 2006

Book Notes: Freakonomics

Yes! I finally got around to reading this highly recommended book this weekend. It lives up to the hype and if you haven't yet read it - go now!

Lots and Lots of people have tons to say about this book so I won't go into much detail at all.

In (short) summary here are the two pillars of the book in my mind, and how they play within the context of NPO's.

The first pillar is that "incentives are the cornerstone of modern life". Any self respecting fundraiser inherently knows this. Yes, be careful not to go overboard with incentives. Yes, make sure that your constituents have the option to donate the value of the incentives back to you... but make no mistake here... t-shirts, iPod and gas cards WILL help you raise more money. (Inside reference, ignore this: Right Hege?!)

The second pillar is about conventional wisdom and that it's often wrong. Let me count the ways that this affects NPO marketing... in fact, I thought it would be fun to list some NPO marketing conventional wisdomisms...
  • We shouldn't cross market
  • We can't ask patients for money
  • Our donors are too old, they don't want to donate online
  • We can't let people use our logo online without a legal contract (I'm snickering as I think about how efficient it is to "print screen and paste things)
  • We must control all brand messages
I know there are MANY, MANY MORE... leave some comments or post your own NPO marketing conventional thinking.

You can read more on the Freakonmics blog as well.

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