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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Sing it: five ways your nonprofit is like an a cappella group | Elizabeth Ricca, Big Duck

As both a musician and professional communicator for good causes, I like the metaphor used in this article. It works!

Ricca, former musical director of her college a cappella, writes:
I've discovered over the years that a cappella singing and nonprofit communications have quite a lot in common—at least when it comes to the strategies that help you succeed.
Here are key points of Ricca's comparison:
Keep your audience engaged. ... It was my job to look at our repertoire and put together a set list that would get the audience paying attention and tapping their feet to the music ....
Well-crafted nonprofit messages are no different, really. ...
All together now ... [I]t was critical for us to all know the music in advance and be crystal clear on what parts we were expected to sing. ... 
If [people in audience] aren't hearing consistent messages from everyone at your organization at every touch point, they won't be able to tell what song you're singing. ...
Choose songs (content) appropriate to the space (channel). ... Sometimes your favorite song just isn't right for the space in which you're singing. 
Same goes for nonprofits choosing when and how to communicate your message. ...
Every voice matters. ... To build a good group sound, we had to coach people as they learned new music and give them the support they needed to sound their best. 
Everyone in your organization is a communicator, on some level. Make sure they have the tools they need ....
Enjoy yourself—and believe in your message. Our best concerts, hands down, were the ones in which felt most confident and had the most fun. ... 
If you really own the messages you're using and feel proud, impassioned, and clear, it will come across to your supporters. ...
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Ricca's article is featured today, Dec. 1, in my daily online paper, Garbl's Good Cause Communications--available at the Nonprofit Communications tab above and by free email subscription.

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