Approaches to Strategic Planning

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11. Impact Marketing

The key to really effective impact communications is to tell the right things to the right people in the right way. We call this process impact marketing: (NCVO).

Impact marketing is directly linked to strategic planning, monitoring and evaluation processes within an organisation. An organisation sets out to make a difference to the lives of individuals / communities. This is measured through outcomes, which then leads to impact marketing.

You can use evidence of your impact:

  • For campaigning or advocacy

  • To help users gain a voice to promote their needs

  • To highlight gaps that need future attention

  • To increase your credibility with other agencies

  • To meet funders' needs and attract more funding and support

  • To demonstrate your track record to purchasers and commissioners

  • To boost morale within your organisation

  • To achieve even more for your users or cause

12. Guidance of marketing and the law

Committee of Advertising Practice:

Information Commissioner's Office:

The above links provide guidance to charities and VCS organisations on legal considerations within marketing.

The first guide, produced by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) provides advice on direct marketing and data protection considerations.

The second guide, produced by the Committee for Advertising Practice, provides guidance o for VCS organisations to ensure marketing communications are legal, decent, honest, and truthful.

13. Does marketing fit with the values of the VCS?

Traditional voluntary sector values have focused on collaboration rather than competition, and delivering services in response to needs. With moves towards tendering and trading through social enterprise activities, business skills have become more relevant to the work of the voluntary sector, with an increased focus on competing for funding and operating in an open market place.

The article below, from the Society Guardian looks at the increased use of business skills, such as marketing, within the voluntary sector. Does this fundamentally change the values of the voluntary sector, or is this a necessary transition to ensure voluntary organisations can sustain the invaluable work they do within local communities?

Do marketing professionals change the nature of the voluntary sector, or as the article suggest, is the voluntary sector softening the approach of the private sector workers keen to work within the VCS?

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