Eastern Recreation and Leisure Services (ERLS) is a not-for-profit organisation that operates within the Cities of Knox, Maroondah, Whitehorse, Monash, Manningham and Boroondara. ERLS works with sport and recreational groups to deliver activities for people with a disability through support in providing inclusive sporting programs.
This evening I was invited as the keynote speaker for the ERLS Community Education Briefing where I discussed marketing for sporting and accessibility groups.
Like any not-for-profit organisation there is a need to develop an effective marketing plan to determine key objectives. This approach enables an organisation to determine its goals and identify strategies to reach prospective members, volunteers and other stakeholders.
The presentation discussed how organisations need a consistent theme and to clearly identify who it is they want to reach and the actions they want someone to undertake. For example, while the key messages of an organisation would remain consistent, the approach taken to encourage volunteers would be different to facilitating donations.
The second half of the presentation covered the Internet and social media, given that this is an area that is increasingly being explored by not-for-profit organisations. It is imperative that websites and social media are seen as marketing tools and not simply as IT exercises.
A website and social media presence needs to be considered alongside the other marketing tools that are used by an organisation, such as newsletters, brochures and information sessions. An online presence needs to complement the offline marketing materials and share consistent messages, themes and branding.
An effective website and social media presence can enhance the ability of a not-for-profit organisation to achieve its marketing objectives, but only if it complements other marketing tools.