Book Review- Guerrilla Marketing for Nonprofits

A new themed blog entry I’m going to start doing are book reviews. Mostly they will be nonprofit and marketing books, but if there’s a must-read that I pick up for pleasure and not just ongoing reading, I’ll be sure to post about it here!

If you are starting up a nonprofit and aren’t sure where to start with fundraising and community building, then Guerrilla Marketing for Nonprofits is a great place to start. The book is geared toward nonprofit professionals who run small organizations and aren’t quite sure where to start with marketing.

The idea of ‘guerrilla marketing’ is that with limited funds, nonprofit marketers have to think outside the box and get dirty (so to speak) with their marketing techniques. Much like guerrilla fighters they have to plan ahead, think strategically, and rely on carefully crafted attacks rather than an all-out siege.

Guerrilla marketing, according to the authors, is people-focused. These nonprofit professionals must rely on a strong network of relationships to get their message out to the world and follow-up with these connections to ensure change occurs.

To a guerrilla marketer, communication must be more about the audience than the organization itself. By using what the authors call “You Marketing,” nonprofits can put their audiences in the story of what these organizations seek to do and see themselves as part of the change.

I loved that the book referenced tried and true communications theory as part of its approach. It’s the scholar in me that wants to be reminded that these ideas have a basis in scholarship and aren’t just rote industry habit.

I also found it useful that the authors break down media into 3 useful categories for planning a marketing campaign:

  1. Mini-media: one-to-one or one-to-few campaigns such as business cards, canvassing, phone calling, print materials, or signage.
  2. Maxi-media: traditional media such as print ads, direct mail, commercials, or billboards.
  3. E-media: online branding and content such as blogs, banners,  or social media.

This breakdown also included many ideas for each media type, so be sure and grab the book if you want to hear more!

Besides helpful ways of thinking about marketing, the guerrilla authors have some step-by-step approaches to fundraising and planning that will help anyone, regardless or expertise or skill level, be a better nonprofit communicator.


3/4 Epic Mountains