When you hear content marketing, environmental donor might not be the first thing that comes to mind.
But it should.
According to the Content Marketing Institute, we’ve all become so attuned to the tricks of advertisers that we can completely tune them out.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, here’s a formal definition of content marketing:
Content marketing is a strategic marketing approach focused on creating and distributing valuable, relevant, and consistent content to attract and retain a clearly-defined audience — and, ultimately, to drive profitable customer action.
In my opinion – admittedly biased as I work almost exclusively on environmental writing and marketing – environmental organizations are perfectly situated for content marketing.
At the core, environmental organizations have to have enough cash inflow to keep themselves in business, and enough left over to make progress on their issue of choice. Therefore, environmental organizations and other green businesses are after the same thing traditional businesses are.
But donors looking for the environmental experience aren’t your traditional donors.
They’re not just after something to improve the quality of their life. They’re also after something that improves the quality of the world around us.
How does content marketing fit into environmental work?
By providing high-quality, useful content on a regular basis, the types of readers you’ll attract have, in essence, self-selected. They are already emotionally invested in your issue.
Environmental organizations can provide high-quality content surrounding the issue you are working for. In every piece you create, you simply have to address how this one issue – the very issue that is the engine of your organization – is going to affect the lives of the reader.
Green businesses also have a great opportunity to invest in content marketing. Your content would focus -surprise!- around the extra benefits your product or service provides over a traditional product or service. Education is still a strong component here, but you should also play up your facts, figures and product information.
Please, shoot the messenger!
Great environmental content marketing is subtle. The kinds of pieces you churn out should not be donate-donate-donate.
In fact, you shouldn’t even always be placing yourself as the obvious solution.
Content marketing is more shifty than that.
It’s a sneak attack at its best.
Information and education are at the root of content marketing. Meaning, if you do it right, the reader is the one to make the connection between the messenger (you) and the next step (give you their money).
Over time, readers will naturally associate you with good information, and when it comes time to make a decision, you’ll be the first ones they think of.
Find the right strategy for you
Like a lot of other marketing plans, content marketing has to be varied to stay interesting and appeal to different kinds of supporters. Luckily, there is a wide range of options that can offer consistent, high-quality content.
- Case studies
- Articles (both on your website and published in trade magazines and journals)
- Social media
- Video messages
- Mixed media
- Special reports
- Interviews with experts
- Seriously, I could go on…
Online marketing is the best place for content marketing because it has to be updated frequently.
Your budget is the only limiting factor, and the imagination and capability of your writers, of course. (See how I didn’t plug myself here? If this were a traditional marketing method, I would remind you, my loyal reader, that hey, I’m an environmental copywriter! I can do content marketing for you! But… that’s not what this article is about, right?)
Gee, now I’ve ruined it.
Which, actually, just proves my point. Be an expert. Provide good information. But please, don’t be pushy.