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Q & A: Who Cares--and Why Should They?

By learning what motivates people, animal welfare organizations can use social marketing to inspire positive change

By learning what motivates people, animal welfare organizations can use social marketing to inspire positive change

When the Fund for Animals tested responses to four versions of its anti-fur campaign posters, the results were surprising. Though animal advocates are moved by images of raccoons and chinchillas, many fur wearers thought of them as rodents and pests. The image of the bobcat garnered a much more positive response. THE FUND FOR ANIMALS
With so many charities and companies competing for public attention and financial support, nonprofits must learn to be as marketing-savvy as their corporate counterparts. Caryn Ginsberg, a social change strategist with Priority Ventures Group, knows it’s not just what you say that matters. It’s how you say it and who you say it to. Drawing on an M.B.A. from Stanford University and years of experience in the business sector, Ginsberg now works with animal protection agencies to help them focus their messaging, create successful programs, and reach their organizational potential. In this excerpted interview, Ginsberg talks with freelance writer Leslie Smith about how shelters and animal welfare groups can make the most of their resources to become effective agents of social change.

AS: What exactly is social marketing?
Caryn Ginsberg:
Social marketing is the application of commercial marketing principles for the benefit of the individual and society—or in our case, animals. It addresses voluntary change, but it’s not just about changing individual behavior. The same approaches can be applied to influencing organizations and political leaders who make legislation.

How is social marketing different from selling dish soap or sports cars?
Interestingly, the general principles of marketing are very similar across the board. The challenge in the nonprofit world is the ability to measure that very bottom line. For example, how can we ever know exactly how many lives are affected by a spay/neuter campaign? The lack of available data makes it difficult for us to make sure our limited resources are going to the highest and best use. It’s frustrating to know we have so many people who are working so hard, but we’re not sure which of our efforts are doing the most for animals.

 Read the full article.

 

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