Monthly Archives: August 2012

Millions of thousand word alternatives to chose from.

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Photographers can be a pain. First portfolios must be perused, selections made, a brief developed, meetings had, quotes delivered, work appraised etc etc. Too slow, too expensive and too uncertain.

using images to boost google rankings

Hey kids: this is a what a non-telephonic camera looks like. It's heated with brown coal.

Some lucky nonprofits have a regular snapper who clicks away pro bono or at a discount. That’s great but only if the work is good quality and delivered quickly. If you need images fast photobanks can be very handy. is the best known and boasts the biggest collection of photos, illustrations, video and animations. Literally millions with over 10,000 new images monthly. and the like provide images that are royalty free. This means you pay for them once and once only, with no ongoing annual royalities owed to the photographer. Simple.

Such sites offer a fast and certain way to get images you like. Yes, too many images are corny and corporate. (Why do we need so many images of multi-racial hotties in office attire staring intently at one laptop?) But there are ‘real’ images to be found too. However iStockphoto takes advantage of its market dominance. $40 an image is more than you need to pay.


You just know that these hotshots are off to yoga when the meeting ends.

We have recently been scouting for dozens of images for the soon-to-be-launched Inner South Community Health Service website and found The selection is smaller, though still huge but even cornier. (Why do we need so many images of women doing yoga on the beach?) There is however treasure among the trash. Brett spent four hours to find 12 possibilities and is insisting on them all being used. The test will be to see how well the bought images match the provided images featuring real clients and staff.

The value is remarkable. Try less than $5 a pop. Tip: purchasing your images after buying credits is cheaper than paying cash.

Or you could use Our Community’s photo bank. Real people. Real free.

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Great nonprofit marketing. Lessons for us all.

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The NDIS campaign Every Australian Counts continues to kick goals with test sites and growing public support.


nonprofit marketing examples

Note how the page places the anger-inspiring message right next to the simple call to action. Bravo.

This recent imagery from the campaign’s website is a text book example of simplifying a complex, devlishly detailed issue into a slam dunk issue: that some people are able to have just two showers a week. Frankly this is a simplistic statement and far from 100% true. Who cares? It’s true for many and it symbolises other indignities the disabled face.

Every Australian Counts could have watered down its argument, nuanced it, made it less confronting. Thank goodness it didn’t. Let the meek inherit the Earth – they won’t know what to do with it anyway.

Our only unsolicited advice would be that such a bold statement requires more explanation. Regular sympathetic folk may wonder why disabled people only have two showers weekly. Well inadequate access to carers at the right time of day means only two showers weekly. As it stands, the copy is attention-grabbing but a little confusing.

Another positive is that the campaign opted for strong, clear, symbolic imagery and design. Bravo. Would it have been even stronger with imagery of someone waiting beside a shower? That’s for Design Court to decide.

nonprofit marketing course

Get 'em angry , then give them a way to take action. And don't let 'em leave your site until you've extracted their email.

Left is another execution of the same idea, this time focussing on the one item every abled body person understands – wheelchairs. More good nonprofit marketing. Again, the claim requires more explanation.

The copy, cleverly plays on readers’ patriotism. It’s not anti-Australian but implies that the current services for disabled Australians are not what we’d expect. Cunning.  

It looks like Australians with a disability are finally finding their mojo. Queensland and Victoria’s Premiers were both taken aback by the level of condemnation they received for holding out on establishing test sites. Even commercial talkback radio abounded with angry calls.

With the disabled up and angry the next great ignored, unserved and misunderstood minority should be taking notes and taking action. The aged. It’s possible and it’s about time.

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Movie review: Pink Ribbons

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Brett recently caught Canadian documentary Pink Ribbons at the Melbourne International Film Festival.The doco takes a look at the phenomenally successful pink ribbon movement in the US which, as here, raises funds for breast cancer research. Though flawed, it’s a must see for anyone in social marketing, health promotion, PR, cancer research or philanthropy.

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Pink washing is sometimes hard to stomach.

This documentary has a clear agenda – debunk the work of those in the pink ribbon movement, in particular the Susan G Komen Foundation which has raised about US$1.9 billion since its inception in 1982. That’s billion with a B. If you associate pink or pink ribbons with breast cancer you have this global cancer megacharity to thank.

When a charity raises that much money, it gains enormous power into how a disease is perceived, marketed and researched. As you’d expect, Komen Foundation has some detractors, many of whom we meet during the documentary.

There’s little time given to defenders of the Foundation or the movement more broadly. Much time is given to a number of women in the final stages of breast cancer who feel that associating the disease they have with pink and positive imagery is demeaning. They don’t like the terms “fight” “battle” or “survivor” which are used constantly by fundraisers.

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Showing great spirit but shown little respect by the film makers.

There are numerous long segments showing tens of thousands of people, mainly women, participating in feel good walk-a-thons and survivor rallies. They embrace pink and have no trouble with terms such as “survivor” but they are presented as chumps, full of good intentions, high-fives and pink merchandise being sucked in to an evangelistic movement.

No pink-ribbon-funded scientists are interviewed.

Author Barbara Ehrenreich, whose book Nickled and Dimed in America is a must-read, reveals a distinct lack of marketing nous as she complains that while undergoing treatment for breast cancer she found advertisements for pink fundraising teddy bears insulting. Well Barbara, the bears aren’t for you. They are bought by other people to raise money to research better drugs for women just like you. Glad to have cleared that up. Like others, she resents all the polished positivity.

pink washing

What says CSR more eloquently than a pink handgun?

Critics claim that corporations are “pink washing” their harmful products under the guise of being good corporate citizens. The filmmakers are on firm ground when they assert that the Komen Foundation seems willing to deal with anyone. Pink handgun? Sure thing. Pink buckets of KFC? Sure. Pink yoghurt and cosmetics laced with chemicals associated with cancer? No problemo. Just pay Komen its share. FYI The McGrath Foundation had a similar deal with KFC here.

While those deals with devils may make the stomach churn the film makers seem to find any corporate involvement unacceptable. One interviewee wonders why corporates are required at all and refers to the civil rights movement as achieving a lot with no support from business. We guess she forgot that civil rights progress required a change of conscience and legislation – not high priced global science. And we guess that the director forgot to mention this to her.

It’s been a tough year for Susan G Komen Foundation – it was broadly lambasted for defunding breast cancer-related programs at Planned Parenthood clinics across the US.

Unbalanced, under-challenging and overlong it may be but for an insight into what can happen when charities become too powerful, it’s worth your time. If you don’t believe me, read what the New York Times said.

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Sustainability leadership training – now with extra Hootville

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Test, 1, 2, 3.

Brett will deliver media training to up-and-coming sustainability leaders at the annual Centre for Sustainability Leadership residential weekend in Warburton Sunday September 2. Brett will be talking about getting a bigger slice of the media pie for green issues – in particular on radio. Brett used to be on radio, you know. This continues Brett voluntary (and rather minor) contributions to CSL which date back to 2005.

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International Volunteers Day emcee role for Brett

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Brett will be heading to the regional sourdough / Steiner / vegie patch epicentre, Castlemaine to emcee a rollicking evening event for a couple of hundred vollies celebrating International Volunteers Day Wednesday December 5. Dozens of volunteer and community groups will be represented.

The following day he’ll deliver Online Savvy 101 to let all those do-gooders take over the internet from pornographers and online betting agencies. About time too. The Mt Alexander Community Network is behind the event and training.

And no, there is no irony in Brett not acting in a voluntary capacity for this event. That’s a triple negative BTW.

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Victoria Law Foundation books media and social media training

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Brett will be delivering two lunchtime workshops to the Victoria Law Foundation in Melbourne: Media Savvy 101 November 27 2012 and Social Media Savvy 101 April 2, 2013. That’s right – next year. Brett claims that this shows how in-demand he is. It more likely shows how well organised the Victoria Law Foundation is.


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