Marketing Research For Non-Profit, Community and Creative Organizations - A Book Review

‘Marketing Research For Non-Profit, Community and Creative Organizations,’ by Bonita Kolb, Ph.D. is an exhaustive, detailed guide to running marketing research within the non-profits sector. Very practical, the point of the book is twofold. First, it gives a clear overview of what market research is and Research For Non-Profit can use it to support their strategic goals; secondly, it provides numerous case studies that show just how using the right methods can increase fundraising and impact donations from a variety of sources. The book also contains many appendices that provide additional information and resources related to various strategies related to marketing research for non-profit organizations.

The text’s main focus is on the twelve topics related to marketing research that have different implications for various organizations. These include audience, target, methodology, measurement, design, results, strategy, and analysis. The twelve topics include analyzing audience trends, defining customers, designing marketing strategies, measuring customer satisfaction, measuring product benefits, analyzing customer behavior, identifying causes and effects, determining the financial feasibility of a campaign, identifying complementary services, and developing a plan.

‘Marketing Research For Non-Profit, Community and Creative Organizations’ by Bonita Kolb is a thorough and well-organized guide to running internal research programs in the Research For Non-Profit community. It is convenient; the book point’s point is dual-fold: first, it explains what a strategic marketing plan actually is. Second, it describes various types of strategic marketing approaches and their strengths and weaknesses. It then examines various examples from organizations that have used these strategies to generate new members, supporters, and donors. In so doing, it provides an insightful look at how people build their capacity and sustainability as a Research For Non-Profit.

The book begins with an introduction explaining why both large and small Research For Non-Profit should use strategic marketing. Then, chapters focus on strategic marketing for non-profits in five different sectors: community development, direct sales, education and youth organizing, global issues, and environmental advocacy. Each of these sectors has its own unique set of problems, challenges, and opportunities that the authors explore in detail. They conclude by briefly examining the strategic marketing plans that have been implemented in each of these sectors. Although many case studies are included, the book’s bulk involves case studies from four specific sectors – community development, direct sales, education and youth organizing, and environmental advocacy.

The book’s introduction presents an overview of marketing research and its relation to strategic marketing for Research For Non-Profit. It then goes on to explain what marketing research is and what it can do. While this part does a good job of introducing the basics, it could have been short-changed regarding its analysis’s breadth and depth. The next chapter covers marketing research methods and approaches and the importance of research, testing, and data management. The next section explores funding sources and what organizations can do to hire the right people for these projects and find them.

I believe that much of this book can be applied directly to your own situation, although the case study approach may be more applicable to your own organization. However, even if you don’t operate a nonprofit, it can be useful to understand how marketing works in this context so that you can develop marketing strategies of your own. This book is useful to anyone who wants to research the dynamics of fundraising and promotion. The book also goes into the marketing of a nonprofit, what kinds of messages are effective, and what messages aren’t. It’s a great primer for anyone who is already doing fundraisers or has a plan in place for the organization.