Cause Marketing Project: First Month Recap

If you have read my “About Me” page, you probably know that my drive for nonprofit marketing stems from my internship. Currently, we are working on the Cause Marketing Project. The goal of the Cause Marketing Project is to connect marketing students from universities with local nonprofits to work together to create digital campaigns that will increase donations, volunteers, and awareness for the nonprofits. It is a way to give marketing students the hands on experience they need and give nonprofits thousands of dollars worth of marketing for free. It is ultimately a win-win for both parties.

My team (Owls 4 Good) and I are currently in the pilot stage of the program. Meaning, we are trying to test out different methods and create a solid foundation for the program. This post is simply a recap of my first month in the program with the other interns and Alex Oliveria, who started the program.

Week One

In the first week of the program, we had the students in Dr. Ann Root’s digital marketing class meet with the heads of the nonprofits and the team of interns. The purpose of this was to not only introduce each other, but for the students to audit the nonprofits current digital marketing strategies through a questionnaire. We took these questionnaires and uploaded them to Basecamp, an online project management and collaboration tool. We started to add the students and nonprofit leaders to Basecamp and organizing them into their own folder where all communication, documents, and tasks can be found.

Alex Oliviera and Dr. Ann Root speaking to digital marketing students and nonprofit leaders.

Week Two

It was finally time for the students to do some recon work of their own. We taught the students how to do a website audit by creating a website audit tutorial. The purpose of the website audit is to pinpoint existing errors and areas of opportunity on a company’s website. The video wound up being a big help to the students. During this week, we also created a weekly report template for the nonprofits which will show progress of the website changes as well as stats of their Google Analytics, newsletters, email campaigns, blogs, and social media accounts. Every week we will have conference calls pertaining to the weekly report, answer questions, and give updates with the nonprofits.

Week Three

In order to be more efficient, we asked the nonprofits to upload their digital assets to Basecamp. We also asked them to list any blog and video ideas they have, and a list of keywords to use. As the students started finishing their website audits, we started to create solutions to their issues and create a timeline and strategy for each individual nonprofit. We also started running into hiccups on Basecamp. We realized that creating gmail accounts for each group of students was hindering their abilities to access Basecamp. Overall, we did a lot of admin work while the students were still learning the basics of digital marketing.

Week Four

Finally fixing the issue with Basecamp, we are able to task the students with to-do’s such as creating newsletter and email templates, researching hashtags, and scheduling events. We were also tasked to create the first blog post for each nonprofit based off the blog idea list. We created a short 100-word paragraph to send to the nonprofits for approval and review.

Overall the first four weeks were full of administrative work and communication between the nonprofits and the students. Soon the students will be mastering Hootsuite and will start creating content for their nonprofits. Running a program of this magnitude can seem overwhelming sometimes, especially because we’re the “guinea pigs” of the whole operation. However, I look forward for the weeks to come.

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