Category Archives: Most Recent

The latest post by Turnkey CEO, Katrina VanHuss

Cats and Dogs Living Together? No, Just Brilliant Nonprofit Leadership

Originally posted on Turnkey Promotions Nonprofit Tools:

Turnkey Promotions' CEO, Katrina VanHuss One of my clients asked me to do a strange thing recently.  It was a puppy head tilt and ear-raising kind of request.

Rich Rumsey,VP, Development and Communications at Project HOPE said (paraphrasing), “Katrina, I’d like you to come to a 3-day retreat with the other vendor-partners my organization uses. These partners, along with my staff, will represent every person who touches any sort of individual giving at Project HOPE.”

WHAT?!  Does this mean I will be breaking bread with (gasp!) DIRECT RESPONSE people?! Major gift grabbers? Corporate relations radicals? Cats and dogs living together?! My peer-to-peer heart grew weak.

Since 1958, Project HOPE has worked to make quality and sustainable health care available for people around the globe, working in more than 120 countries. Now Rich wanted us to work together to, as he said, “make all boats rise,” AND, it turns out, he wanted us to make s’mores together too!

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Four Deliverables You Should Expect from Your Recognition Program

Turnkey Promotions' CEO, Katrina VanHussA recognition gift program is a marketing program, regardless of its name.

Most marketing programs motivate someone to action by desire for a product or service. Turnkey’s marketing program capitalizes on the human desire for recognition to move a person to action, because that desire is more powerful than money, fear, or competition. Like any good marketing program, it has a goal, is planned, executed to plan, and measured.

So why not just say, “You did a great job,” which you can do for free, and be done with it?  Poor compliance and execution, that’s why. We systematize our recognition gift program to be sure that every participant gets the same treatment. If the participant’s experience isn’t consistent, you can’t measure the impact of the effort you put toward recognition. Without a systematized recognition system, your recognition is only as good as the staff person in charge, and that face changes often.

A well-planned marketing program using recognition as a motivator accomplishes these four very important things:

  1. Increases fundraising
  2. Gives your nonprofit a year round presence within the community by way of branded gifts
  3. Increases the fundraiser’s tie to your nonprofit and the likelihood they will fundraise for you again
  4. Offers the fundraiser the chance to tell your story, to start a conversation about your organization

Do you hold your own recognition program to these standards? Remember, regardless what you call it– recognition program, incentive program, thank you program– it’s a marketing program.  How does your program measure up?

Are Your Clients Riding the New York Subway or The Tube?

Katrina VanHussTo preserve my budget, butt, and the planet, I typically walk or use the subway while traveling around a big city. I’ve come to notice a distinct difference between New York, Chicago, and London subway systems.

I’m not sure where to go when I use the New York subway system. The signage is bad. Everything is loud and there are lots of distractions. Ticketing is kind of confusing. Once I’m finally on the right train, there is nothing to tell me how far along I am or what the next stop will be. I am anxious the entire time I ride.

When I travel the Chicago “L”, I notice lots of signage as I look for the right train. It all seems easy. Ticketing is integrated between trains and subways. Once on my train, I get frequent reminders of where I am and what the next stop will be. I’m at ease.

Like the “L”, the Tube in London is an OK experience, but many of the Tube stations also have great live music. I’ve also noticed most passengers sound like they have a really high IQ. The English sound smart; they just do. I’m at ease and delighted. And I like it when someone who sounds like Adele is saying, “Oh my God, you’re American! Say ‘wall.’ Now say ‘vacation.’ Now say ‘herb.’”

What has all that to do with work? EVERYTHING! When someone becomes a client of Turnkey Promotions, it’s a train ride. They need signage, reassurance, direction. They need to be at ease and delighted.

I have to believe it’s the same with whomever you’re serving. Ask yourself. Are they at ease? Delighted? I’m reviewing my project list today and looking for those who might need a better experience.