Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell

How to Build a Brand Ambassador Program with Nick Lynch

May 03, 2023 Julia Campbell Episode 87
How to Build a Brand Ambassador Program with Nick Lynch
Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell
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Nonprofit Nation with Julia Campbell
How to Build a Brand Ambassador Program with Nick Lynch
May 03, 2023 Episode 87
Julia Campbell

This episode is sponsored by my friends at Keela,  a comprehensive fundraising and donor management software that will help you expand your reach, increase fundraising revenue, and foster a dedicated community of supporters.

Several of my clients are currently using Keela and have continued to be impressed with how easy it is to use, how affordable it is and most importantly, the results that they see and the impact they are able to create.

Keela is hosting a webinar, led by me, on June 6 -
How to Drive Donations and Get Engagement Using Social Media. It’s totally free, and you can get all the details and sign up by clicking here.

Brand Ambassador programs mean more than telling people to post your stuff on social media. Today's topic centers around how to build a brand ambassador program at your nonprofit, how to work effectively with influencers, how to measure success, and how even small nonprofits can build these kinds of relationships. 

My guest this week is Nick Lynch. From his own personal experience as a former Make-A-Wish recipient who survived cancer at an early age, Nick is passionate about nonprofit organizations and has spent his professional career building solutions for brands to better identify and target their audiences online.

When the COVID-19 pandemic suddenly forced many nonprofits into the digital space, it triggered Nick to think strategically about solving the challenges of creating opportunities to thrive without in-person events. He created Collidescope.io, an all-in-one social media measurement and data analytics platform to help nonprofits survive throughout the pandemic and beyond.

 Connect with Nick Lynch

  • Email: nick@collidescope.io 
  • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/42794718/admin/ 
  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/Collidescopeio
  • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/collidescope.io/ 
  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/collidescopeio 
  • Resource: https://collidescope.io/ (website) 

About Julia Campbell, the host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast:

Named as a top thought leader by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell (she/hers) is an author, coach, and speaker on a mission to make the digital world a better place.

She wrote her book, Storytelling in the Digital Age: A Guide for Nonprofits, as a roadmap for social change agents who want to build movements using engaging digital storytelling techniques. Her second book, How to Build and Mobilize a Social Media Community for Your Nonprofit, was published in 2020 as a call-to-arms for mission-driven organizations to use the power of social media to build movements. 

Take my free masterclass: 3 Must-Have Elements of Social Media Content that Converts

Show Notes Transcript

This episode is sponsored by my friends at Keela,  a comprehensive fundraising and donor management software that will help you expand your reach, increase fundraising revenue, and foster a dedicated community of supporters.

Several of my clients are currently using Keela and have continued to be impressed with how easy it is to use, how affordable it is and most importantly, the results that they see and the impact they are able to create.

Keela is hosting a webinar, led by me, on June 6 -
How to Drive Donations and Get Engagement Using Social Media. It’s totally free, and you can get all the details and sign up by clicking here.

Brand Ambassador programs mean more than telling people to post your stuff on social media. Today's topic centers around how to build a brand ambassador program at your nonprofit, how to work effectively with influencers, how to measure success, and how even small nonprofits can build these kinds of relationships. 

My guest this week is Nick Lynch. From his own personal experience as a former Make-A-Wish recipient who survived cancer at an early age, Nick is passionate about nonprofit organizations and has spent his professional career building solutions for brands to better identify and target their audiences online.

When the COVID-19 pandemic suddenly forced many nonprofits into the digital space, it triggered Nick to think strategically about solving the challenges of creating opportunities to thrive without in-person events. He created Collidescope.io, an all-in-one social media measurement and data analytics platform to help nonprofits survive throughout the pandemic and beyond.

 Connect with Nick Lynch

  • Email: nick@collidescope.io 
  • LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/company/42794718/admin/ 
  • Twitter: https://twitter.com/Collidescopeio
  • Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/collidescope.io/ 
  • Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/collidescopeio 
  • Resource: https://collidescope.io/ (website) 

About Julia Campbell, the host of the Nonprofit Nation podcast:

Named as a top thought leader by Forbes and BizTech Magazine, Julia Campbell (she/hers) is an author, coach, and speaker on a mission to make the digital world a better place.

She wrote her book, Storytelling in the Digital Age: A Guide for Nonprofits, as a roadmap for social change agents who want to build movements using engaging digital storytelling techniques. Her second book, How to Build and Mobilize a Social Media Community for Your Nonprofit, was published in 2020 as a call-to-arms for mission-driven organizations to use the power of social media to build movements. 

Take my free masterclass: 3 Must-Have Elements of Social Media Content that Converts

Julia Campbell:

Hello This episode is sponsored by my friends at Keela, a comprehensive fundraising and donor management software that will help you expand your reach, increase your fundraising revenue, and foster a dedicated community of supporters. Now several of my clients are currently using Keela. And they continue to be impressed with how easy it is to use, how affordable it is, and most importantly, the results that they see and the impact they're able to create. Now, Keela is hosting a free webinar led by me on June 6, how to drive donations and get engagement using social media. It's totally free. And you can get all the details and sign up@www.jc Social marketing.com backslash Keela that's JC social marketing.com/keela See you there. Hi, everyone, welcome back to nonprofit Nation. I'm your host, Julia Campbell, and I'm so thrilled that you've decided to join me again, wherever you're listening from today is an extra juicy episode. This is something that is often a topic of conversation, something my clients and students asked me about, very frequently, how to build a brand ambassador program, how to work with influencers, and what small nonprofits can do to build these kinds of programs, and relationships. So my guest today is Nick Lynch, and in an ever changing and evolving digital world. I do love this bio. By the way, I like the way the Bible is written. Because I'm a writer. And actually, it's very interesting because normally bios are very boring, but this one is not I promise. So listen up. In an ever changing and evolving digital world, Nick Lynch has spent his professional career building solutions for brands to better identify and target their audiences on line. Nick is more than a businessman from personal experience. As a former maker wish recipient who survived cancer at an early age, Nick is passionate about nonprofit organizations, the COVID 19 pandemic suddenly forced many nonprofits into the digital space, which I know it triggered Nick to think strategically about solving the challenges of creating opportunities to thrive without in person events. And this prompted him into creating kaleidoscope.io an all in one social media measurement and data analytics platform to help nonprofits survive throughout the pandemic and belong beyond sorry about that. Nick, welcome.

Nick Lynch:

Thank you. I'm good. So excited to be here.

Julia Campbell:

Well, we have to hear about your wish. I worked with a couple of maker wish chapters. So as a former maker, wish recipient, what was your wish?

Nick Lynch:

My wish was to go to Disneyland. And it was awesome. So I mean, they sent me they picked me up in a limo. And I still remember, you know, this was the 80s. So I remember like, making a car felt like a phone call from the car in the limo. And I remember the whole entire wish, and I credit make a wish and the power of what a wish does in really shaping who I am, and not using my sort of experience with cancer as a negative but more as a positive. And so I love them.

Julia Campbell:

Wow. So how did you get started in this work in your career. And what you do now?

Nick Lynch:

For about, you know, about seven years ago is when I actually reached out to the LA chapter of Make a wish and really wanted to be more involved in sort of just use my story, my experience in whatever capacity that make a wish could one of the biggest misconceptions if not the biggest misconception of Make a wish is that children that are granted wishes are terminal. And obviously that's not the case. And in a majority of the cases it's not and so that was sort of just kind of my first foray. I've always donated I've always sort of done whatever I could, but that was really my first foray and like real deep work and do whatever I could do possible in personal and professional career in service of Midwest, Greater Los Angeles. And if you fast forward, really to the beginning of COVID, that's really when my deep work really started and really trying to figure out how to build the bridge bridges of my professional and my personal life. You know how to actually help organizations think about the future, not only just sort of like aspirationally, but like, like tactfully, like, how do we actually do it? And what is the work that needs to be done? And how do we connect the dots? And what's really required? I mean, I think before we even did anything with Kaleidoscope I think I spoke with, like, 300 or so Nonprofit Professionals, brand professionals, just people that could potentially benefit from what we're doing. And so it's been fantastic. And I do want to pause though, and tell you that I am a huge fan, and the first person that anybody ever told me to follow in his face was you. So this is sort of like that kind of fanboying right now, because I'm super excited about being on here.

Julia Campbell:

That's amazing. Who told you to follow me?

Nick Lynch:

Everybody I talked to honestly, like, everybody in the early stages of on the nonprofit side and asking about like, Who's Who's what are the voices saying, and who are they, in marketing when it comes to nonprofits? And they said, Julie Campbell, really can't wait, you gotta check you're looking at well, so excited.

Julia Campbell:

Thank you. Now, I just read, you worked at MySpace. I have a MySpace account. Are you friends with Tom? That's what we need to know.

Nick Lynch:

I was No, I mean, those were the early days, right. So I mean, really learning how social media works and the benefits. And I guess the drawbacks, but that was really where I cut my teeth, and really figuring out how this thing called social media was actually going to grow and what data could be used. And so that's kind of where a lot of my experience comes from, obviously, over time to build on it.

Julia Campbell:

Exactly. So it looks like from what I know about kaleidoscope. It is that social media measurement and data analytics platform. And what I think is so interesting about that is that not a lot of nonprofits, do the work to measure and analyze the return on investment or even anything, the return on posting, it's not even necessarily return on paid ads, but it's just the return on the time and the effort spent. So tell me about you know, how you help nonprofits why you decided, you know, you worked at MySpace actually love to hear about that. But how this transition happened, where you saw this pain point, how did that come to fruition, and you realize nonprofits really need this help. Because I know that

Nick Lynch:

The first thing I thought of, at the beginning of they do. the pandemic, and 2020 is, you know, when all the in person events started to sort of just appear, like, how can I use my understanding of brands who want to spend, and they are spending billions of dollars a year in cause marketing, and nonprofit partnerships. I mean, there's billions of dollars in this space, and I knew that they would spend more, and there would be more dollars in this space, if they could measure and understand get a report, get some analytics on what is the return? Not necessarily, you know, I give $25 and I get my my logo on a newsletter and a T shirt, but like, what is the actual impact to my brand, when I co market with Make a wish or with a green piece, right, or whatever that whatever the case may be. And so I knew that if I could bring analytics on the return on investment side, as well as measure the return on impact for a nonprofit, I knew that I could get more dollars circulated. And I also knew that influencer marketing, I mean, it's now sort of everywhere. But you know, three years ago, it was still somewhat emerging. But I knew that influencers in the Creator space, were really interested in wanting to leverage their platform for good, but they're also admittedly lazy. They like to focus on one thing, which is creating content. So I knew that if I could bring in, if I could match brands, and nonprofits and influencers where there's vision and value alignment, measure the return on investment for the grand return on impact for the nonprofit that I can bring more dollars in and I could scale. And so we did a lot of early testing on that, and it worked. And so we continue to do small and small tests. And over time, we built sort of this process, this product, and a practice really for how do we match the right people together all the right stakeholders, the three stakeholders, how do we put campaigns together to target a specific goal, then that's not always fundraising, that could be awareness that could be engagement, could be fundraising also? And then how do we measure it and make sure that we understand this brand partner delivered X amount of impact for our nonprofit and the brand got X amount of brand engagement and interaction and essentially lifts by you know, collaborating with a nonprofit in a, in an influencer? So that's literally how we started and what we built. You know, it's funny, because fast forward over the last three years, we've become so much more than just a measurement platform, and an influencer marketing company where we really sit on sort of the intersection of media marketing and measurement for all things, social impact, people kind of jokingly call us the Deloitte social good, because we really are like the bridge, that that strategic the tactical bridge between this emerging media, which is influencer marketing, or the creative economy, brands who are looking to try to figure out how to get in this space, not only from the Creator standpoint, but also the cost base, and then obviously bringing nonprofits on together so that all of the impact can scale.

Julia Campbell:

That's definitely needed. I think that's something that's been missing from the space. So that's really interesting. But today's topic is building a brand ambassador program. I think there's a lot of myths and misconceptions out there around what that means. So can you tell us you know, what is a brand, Ambassador?

Nick Lynch:

Sure. So typically, what a brand ambassador has been or has been used for is, is kind of framed in sort of the corporate in the for profit world, right where it maybe you're a shoe company, or a makeup company, or right, you're working with Lebron James, right. And they're there, they're the ones sort of, you're using their celebrity, or you know, their background in a particular space, as you know, as a professional or as an expert, and then essentially tying your brand to that person. So you're kind of piggybacking off of their excellence, and celebrity and all those types of things. That's traditionally what it has been, what we endeavour to do. And what we've started to really help scale is bring that same type of mentality to the nonprofit space and build value and vision alignment relationships between, you know, cog based organizations, and what would be called influencers or creators or people in the greater economy. And so the one thing that I think is super important in understanding all of this, like, number one, is, everybody is technically an influencer. It does not necessarily, it does not matter if you have 100 people following you, or 100 million people, you have some level of influence to some people. I may have 100 people on social media, they're mostly maybe my friends, maybe some people who know who I am. They know I'm kind of a nerd. And I like things like the avatar and Star Wars and those types of things. And maybe I went and saw the new avatar, and I said, Guys, don't go it's terrible, that actually might influence people to not go now I loved it. And I'm telling everybody to go. But that's an that's an example of I have influence over my followers, right? They would listen to me. And that same goes on the nonprofit side, your board members are influencers on LinkedIn, right? Your community are influencers on their social media platforms, it does not need to be a huge person to be a brand ambassadors. So to answer your I guess your question directly for the nonprofit space. It's really about finding advocates, and partners who are valued and vision aligned in your mission. And who can work with you to essentially communicate variation initiatives, and various talking points in a sort of coordinated way around particular events or just general comments?

Julia Campbell:

And what are some of the benefits of having a brand ambassador program, even just on a small scale?

Nick Lynch:

Sure, there's two core benefits that I believe, like, if we could kind of take all a step back and like, look at the basics of what we do from a mission perspective, is storytell. And community built. Like that's really the two things that you need to do.

Julia Campbell:

You are literally speaking my language doesn't my two books are about storytelling,

Nick Lynch:

and that's why I'm telling you. So it but that's if you do those two things, while all the other tactical things, I mean, obviously, it's a lot harder in practice. But generally speaking, the tactical things sort of fall into place, once you get really good at storytelling. And once you get really good at community building. So if you apply that to Ambassador programs, influencer marketing or influencer partnerships, we have to be really good at understanding how to tell stories in a social media world. We can't tell stories on you know, via mail anymore. We can't tell stories, sort of via email anymore, those things can work. But ultimately, we need to figure out how to evolve our storytelling and use the mediums available to tell our stories. So that's number one. That's why Ambassador programs are great, right multichannel, right. And number two, I mean, you can't build community by ourselves, right? And we rely on our volunteers, we rely on our board members. So this is sort of a really great sort of amazing sort of domino effect way of building community, you can work with partners who have 20 followers or 200 followers, and you can use their communities to build onto your communities. And so having 2357 10 sort of ambassadors or partners on the influencer space, who are, you know, really helping you build community telling your story in the new mediums and building community through their audience. It's a really great and efficient way to continue to scale your community without having to try to go one by one or two by two. I mean, it's really like 10 by 100 by 100 by 1000. When you start stacking all these ambassadors, so those are like the I love those two benefits, and like those are the two core ones I always focus on.

Julia Campbell:

Okay, so we're sold on this. I think a lot of organizations do you think this is a great idea? A lot of nonprofits, they think like you said, it's just you've got to have Khloe Kardashian or LeBron James to do a brand Ambassador Program, although I will say if you look at a person like Khloe Kardashian on Instagram, how many million followers they have, but they don't really get a lot of comments or genuine comments. So I think having these smaller targeted, really influential, but in a very condensed way these kind of, I don't know, if they're called Nano influencers micro influencers anymore. But those kinds of people in your network, I think, a really, that's really effective. And that's the best way for small nonprofits to go. But how do we get started?

Nick Lynch:

I always say the first thing is just figure out, like, what do you want to achieve? And there's always three buckets, right? There's three buckets of goals, you either want to generate reach and awareness, like you want to say, hey, like we exist, and this is who we are, right? That's probably one of number one. Goal. Number two is, people know who we exist that exists. But we really got to get people to our website, maybe we have a pamphlet that needs to be downloaded, or we've just released sort of a study that we want to distribute or we want some type of traction, around engagement, maybe we want more followers on social media, whatever the case may be, but engagements like the second bucket. And then the third bucket obviously is like some very particular call to action, we want somebody to sign a petition, we want somebody to donate money to us, we want somebody to whatever the call to action is right? You know, sign up for our newsletter, or come to our gala, whatever it is, there's sort of that action piece. So those are like the three buckets that we look at. So it's really like what is our goals? And then based on what our goals are, then we can kind of figure out okay, which type of influencers in which type of platforms would we really want to go after, you don't have to be everywhere, all the time, sort of focus on one platform where you know, your audience is really there. And the audience that is on that platform will help you achieve sort of that particular that goal and then you start aligning influencers to that. So to your point, you know, if you're trying to get awareness, then maybe we should try to find maybe some slightly larger influencers that have reached maybe they don't have a ton of comments or engagement but you're gonna get some some impressions, you're gonna get some people to see you. And that's a really good way to at least start a conversation, right? But if you want people to maybe do some engagement, really come to your website, maybe donate some money, maybe let's try to find some some of these smaller guys who have really great engagement, their audiences there to follow them, they trust that particular person. And so that if, if there's value in vision alignment, and that in that particular influencer has talked about the circular economy, and you're a, you know, Ocean Conservancy, or even a thrift store, right, like, those are the types of people that you would want to align with and have you share your mission, they don't need to be big, but they need to be have an active and engaged following that really follows them and can really help resonate your audience or your message to their audience.

Julia Campbell:

So what are some pitfalls? Like what are some traps? I think that nonprofits fall into when they're trying to build these kinds of programs?

Nick Lynch:

Yeah, well, I think I mean, when I think anything nonprofit, it's always the pitfall is like, thinking that you can't do it, or it costs too much. And so you don't start, right. I think that honestly is like the number not starting is like the number one. And look, you believe in your mission. This is this is who you are, there are other people that you haven't talked to that feel probably the same way, and many of them are most likely influencers. So I think understanding what you want to achieve, what your goals are, and what the messaging you want, if you can understand those and really write those down and find several influencers, that that you feel would align with that. And you can communicate that clearly. Most likely, they'll donate a post, you don't have to have a budget, you just sort of sort of talk to them and let them know, this is exactly what we need. This is exactly who we are, this is why we like you. And we'd love to figure out a way to partner it doesn't like literally we've done tons of campaigns that were free. No money, we've just asked them to post for us. Or maybe we have, you know, some apparel some merchandise, and we'll barter Can you Can we send you a shirt? And can you shout out our you know, our walk next week or next month, something like that, right? So there are a lot of things you can do. As long as your goals are clear, as long as your your message is clear, and what the expectation is nine times out of 10 you can probably get somebody to do something for free, right? So I think that's the pitfalls is like, you don't need money. Let's just start figuring out what you want to achieve, and then start reaching out and having a conversation.

Julia Campbell:

So where do you find these people?

Nick Lynch:

Yeah, so I mean, they're all the platforms are really starting to kind of fall in line. And interestingly enough, sort of along a demographic line. I mean, I think if you have, historically an older audience and you're trying to reach, you know, maybe 45 Plus Facebook's continues to be a really great platform to find people 18 to 35. You know, there's people on Instagram and obviously anybody younger is mostly on Tik Tok, but I'm seeing a lot of really interesting pickup. YouTube's great Twitch is fantastic, right? There's so much amazing statistics over the last few years of these amazing streamers who have generated millions of dollars of fundraising for nonprofits, and their charity streams. So I think that all of those platforms are great like I said, understand what your goals are, pick one platform and one particular audience that you want to target on that platform and then align your influence to there. And then once you get really good at that one platform, then you can maybe start thinking about other ones. But I think it's it's any the other pitfalls, thinking that you have to be everywhere all the time, you just have to be really good on one channel, there's millions of people on all these all these platforms, so just be really good on one channel. And then you can go

Julia Campbell:

I actually have an example. And I'm, I want to from there. ask you about examples of, you know, great ambassador programs. But an organization I'm a monthly donor to, they're called Amira, my audience is probably sick of me talking about them. Am I ra h Incorporated, one of my just favorite loves passionate about them, they approached their monthly donors specifically to ask them if we would share on our stories, during what was it Sex Trafficking Awareness Month. And they sent us the actual graphics, they sent us the caption, they sent us everything that we would need. And all they did was ask us if we did so to tag them. So I thought that was a very simple way to start. Because then they could see, first of all, who did it, you know, like, who actually responded to this, and then they could maybe, you know, then they've cultivated me further because I did do it. So cultivating that further, but I think sending just seeing, you know, just like sending something out there seeing if people are gonna respond, like seeing what your email list is doing, or maybe a targeted segment of your email list, and just see what's gonna resonate with them. So that's kind of my, my favorite example. But do you have any examples of brand ambassador programs you can share?

Nick Lynch:

Yeah, I have tons. But I love that particular use case, I think it's brilliant. So simple. And the thing I always sort of talk about is the three T's right time, talent, treasure, like our partners, our constituents, our donors, our board members, everybody has those three T's, some of them are flush, and one of the T's maybe some of the T's but we all have we all can can do something, right. So when we're asking our you know, a particular group of our audience, or our donors to share on social media, they can use the time t right time, talent, treasure, just takes a little bit of time, share it, and it's really cost nothing, you just have to share it. So I think that's a brilliant and a great use case for turning all of your donors into influencers. I think it's fantastic. I think one of my favorite use cases is we actually worked with a nonprofit. And you mentioned at the top of the of this conversation that most most nonprofits don't even measure. I mean, this is 100 100 plus year old nonprofit. And they never had once measured any sort of marketing metrics at offer a Campaign Zero, they were forced to do their first ever digital or streaming gala event during COVID. And so you know, it was a sports related talent show. And they really needed help getting the word out, and then obviously driving engagement and people to sign up for it. And so we initially thought that their performance was mostly going to come from email, they had like 60,000 75,000 people on an email list, sort of traditionally how they ran. So what we did is we measured all of the email stuff and compared it to some of the social media activity in terms of driving traffic and awareness and those sorts of pieces. And just right off of just measuring that one particular piece, we saw that social media was driving everything, and email wasn't. And so then we figured out that, okay, it's really coming from Instagram. So let's find some influencers on Instagram that are sports related that can help us really, you know, drive everything that we want. And we measured that. And we found that those influencers were absolutely fantastic. And so we really shifted all of our focus to those particular influencers. And then, so we kept doing kept, we kept doing posts sort of leading up to the event, the second and third posts, it didn't do so great. But we measured all of the all of the posts. And we saw that when we actually posted at this particular time using this type of messaging. And this image, this actually did really well. And when we did the other two posts, we didn't use those, right. And so just by measuring that we could optimize in real time continue to stick with that influencer. And once we optimize that out, we found that those types of messaging and images with other influencers performed really, really well. So like, ultimately, I just love that use case because they never measured anything before. Once we started measuring, we saw really quickly what worked and what didn't. And in real time, we could shift our efforts and our tactics to the things that were working the things that weren't right, because like off the bat, if you looked at it sort of the second or third week of this influence posting, you would think like, oh, I don't want to stick with them. But we when we looked at the data, we saw that we do want to stick with them. We just have to change sort of how we work with them.

Julia Campbell:

So like a lot of AB testing, a lot of experimentation, a lot of trial and error or just really seeing what works. And I think that's a very good point because the messaging that the nonprofit might be using is probably not the same messaging that the influencer would be saying because the influencer needs or the ambassador needs to talk to their audience in a certain way. So you can certainly give them that information, give them that content, but then they need to craft it in a certain way. So actually, while I have you here, I think this is a really important topic. How do we determine success? So I know that it's going to be different for everyone. But specifically for a brand ambassador program? Do you have any metrics, maybe three or four metrics that we should definitely be tracking? to kind of figure out if this has been successful or not?

Nick Lynch:

I always look it typically depends on like the goal, if it goes awareness engagement in or indoor like fundraising, those sort of three different sets of metrics, but But ultimately, we always look at things like reach and impressions and engagement, we want to see how many people are actually seeing that post, how many people are actually liking it, sharing it, commenting on it, really look at those two particular metrics. We also like to look at sort of the, the increase in followers, we'd like to look at any traffic to the website, we sort of look at it holistically. And obviously, ultimately, if we're raising dollars or driving people to a particular action, we measure all of that. But we would bucket we would bucket it depending on the goals. Every platform, and every sort of goal tier has sort of different benchmarks for sure. You know, but ultimately, like if you can get some type of, you know, engagement around depending on again, depending on the influencer, but what what they typically would get for a non like sponsored post or a non partner post that's like, those are the benchmarks that we typically look at is how well an influencer performs and making sure that we kind of get pretty close to their organic posts.

Julia Campbell:

And what do you think an influencer wants? So like, when we approach an ambassador, potential ambassador? How can we make it a win win for them? What are they generally looking for? Yep. So clear expectations are number one, like just going to an influencer and saying, Hey, will you work with us? Yeah. Hey, will you post about our campaign? No, write me the tweet.

Nick Lynch:

Yeah. So so be very specific and prescriptive of exactly what it is that the expectation is that you want, like, how do you want to work with them? What do you want them to say? What can you provide them right? Be very, very specific and descriptive, on how a relationship or partnership to work. So that's number one, they just want to understand like, what it is that we're actually engaging with. Number two is, they want to be a part of something bigger, they're very, they like, almost every influencer has a cause or a set of causes that they're very passionate about. So you know, making sure that you also communicate that you understand who they are, that they are aligned with your vision and values, I think is really, really important. Because again, if you just sort of do a blanket, DM or a blanket email and say, We like you, while you work with us, that doesn't really it's not really affect it. But if you can say, This is who we are, we like what you say about this particular topic, we would love for you to post at some point during our national awareness month, these are the sorts of things that we would love for you to post and we're happy to give you some content, if that helps you do that right? Kind of basic stuff, and just really line up for them. And ultimately, sometimes they do require a fee. And then maybe you can note that and move on, maybe you can find a corporate partner to subsidize that, and it's or one of your corporate partners, or maybe somebody on the board runs or runs a business or part of a company that could subsidize that, but ultimately, like getting the conversation started to being really clear about what the expectations are, and why you think they're a good partner are like paramount to really starting the foundation off of a relationship the right way.

Julia Campbell:

That's so important. Because if you're going to approach certain people, I'm thinking of like some Twitch influencers, YouTube influencers, they, you know, do some research, right, like, see, are they interested in mental health or the arts or LGBTQIA? You know, causes? Or, you know, is this something that they're opposed to? Like, I feel like a lot of organizations, they just, they all say like, oh, well, we should just go ask Oprah or we should, you know, write a grant and to the Gates Foundation, but there's no true connection there. You know, there's no research. So I guess, like, do your research and reach out personally. Another question that I have, because I do see this come up. I was actually in a panel at the nonprofit technology conference last year around influencer marketing, and a lot of the small nonprofits, even the bigger nonprofits, they have this fear that they're going to be linked to an ambassador that's going to say something or do something or swear or I don't know, like, you know, they're not going to be this perfect angel person all the time. How do you address these fears? And I think this is also why a lot of boards are hesitant to even first of all via social media, but secondly, work with people they can't control. So How do you address these fears with your clients?

Nick Lynch:

I think that if this conversation was happening even a couple years ago, I would say you're I mean, this happens quite frequently. I mean, the influencer marketing business as a whole really hadn't matured at that point in things can happen. But the Creator economy like it's now its own thing. There are standard operating procedures, there's practices, people understand that as a business, you're, you know, you're going to be a content creator, that is your business. So if you do these types of things, you they know that you won't get any business. But But the question I always have is, what's the difference between a celebrity endorsement and an influencer endorsement, right? I mean, celebrities could still say stupid stuff, or do stupid things, too, right. And so you know, I think that if we seek celebrity, there's always a risk. But ultimately, what you need to do is make sure you've done your research, you looked at past sort of posts and content and understand who they are, you know, but ultimately, there's some legal stuff that we can put in place that we always do in a contract in terms of morality clauses. But we're in a, we're in a space now where the Creator economies is fully in pretty mature, and nobody's going to fault you for working with a creator at all anymore. That's just not necessarily a real risk at this point. As long as you've done your research on who it is that you're working with, you've looked at some of their past content, because we've definitely worked with organizations and have identified influencers, that on the surface look great, for sure. But if you look at some of their past content, they may have said something that was not necessarily kosher, or the right thing, especially in regards to the cause that you're on. And so you just got to do a little bit of research and just make sure you know, who you're partnering with.

Julia Campbell:

Exactly. And I think that, you know, I have sponsors of my podcast, and you know, I have sponsors of my newsletter and things like that, and they know me, and they our values align. So they know if I say something that might be deemed political or provocative, that it's aligning with them, it's not going to be kind of this, like, totally off the rails thing that I'm going to say, but I agree, you just really need to find people whose values align with yours, but understand you can't 100% control the conversation at all times. And if you're on social media, you can't control the conversation at all anyway, you can try but you, you really can't,

Nick Lynch:

And the value of value of an influencers, their authenticity, right? So like, you know, you kind of want them to be who they are, you can't really say like you have you this is the box you have to operate in, because that's just not going to work in those types of partnerships.

Julia Campbell:

So do you have any advice for, you know, the nonprofit professional, like a lot of my listeners, they have so many responsibilities so much on their plate, their fundraisers, their marketers, their social media managers? How can they kind of squeeze this? And how can they make it the most effective that they can? That they can make it?

Nick Lynch:

Yeah, so I mean, I believe that influencer marketing sort of touches all areas, it's, it's part development, it's part marketing, you know, and so I think it's really important to figure out based on what you're currently doing, and how you're how you're currently working, how you can start sort of plugging in these types of Ambassador programs, I think what you highlighted in terms of creating just a quick media kit to hit that you can share it to your audience is a really great example of how I think something's slightly small with just a little bit of effort of things you're already doing. You're already communicating to people on social media, you're already communicating to your donors, and your email list. If you can just go to Canva for an hour, make a nice little post and maybe write a caption or to chat GBT now will allow you to do that pretty quickly. That's a whole nother rabbit hole. But you know, I think, do what you're already doing and start sort of piecing things together so that you can easily use it to do outreach, again, to your donors to be the influencers, to your board to be influencers, and to people that have vision and value alignment on social media, as you as your influencers and just test. You don't have to be big, but just do a little bit, share it, get a conversation started and see how it can evolve to again, be a better storyteller and build your community.

Julia Campbell:

Well, this has been fantastic. I know you're busy. I know you're a dad, I know you're a startup founder, I know that you are just going meeting to meeting to meeting. So thank you so much for being so generous with your time and expertise. And I want to hear first of all, who is kaleidoscope.io for and where can people learn more information about it? Yeah, so thank you for having me. Again, this has been sort of a fulfillment of a long time. I'm so excited that I got to talk to you today. But Kaleidoscope.io is really for any size nonprofit that is looking to develop any type of influence or opportunity and really scale their storytelling in their community building through that type of means. And it's also for corporations and for for profit businesses that are really looking at how they can sort of scale and adjust and look at the potential future of their social impact initiatives and partnering with influencers and nonprofits. So we work with both sides a lot and you know, you can reach me Nick at Kaleidoscope.io

Nick Lynch:

We're here to support we have lots of resources. And I'm very, very much looking forward to continuing to work with you, Julia on lots of things.

Julia Campbell:

Okay. Well, thank you so much, everyone, I'll put a post all of this in the show notes. Oh, you did say you have a webinar or you have some kind of event coming up?

Nick Lynch:

Yeah. So we're gonna start doing monthly webinars on influencer marketing, and just kind of, again, helping people understand sort of the core fundamentals of what it is what it's not how to start kind of a lot of the things that we talked about today, and maybe expanding on it a little more. And so I'll share some information with you. And we'll hopefully start educating everybody so that people can really start figuring out how to integrate, integrate it included in what they're doing.

Julia Campbell:

All right, fantastic. Well check out the show notes for all of the links and the resources. And thanks so much, Nick, for stopping by.

Nick Lynch:

Thanks, really appreciate it.

Julia Campbell:

Well, hey there, I wanted to say thank you for tuning into my show, and for listening all the way to the end. If you really enjoyed today's conversation, make sure to subscribe to the show in your favorite podcast app, and you'll get new episodes downloaded as soon as they come out. I would love if you left me a rating or review because this tells other people that my podcast is worth listening to. And then me and my guests can reach even more earbuds and create even more impact. So that's pretty much it. I'll be back soon with a brand new episode. But until then, you can find me on Instagram at Julia Campbell seven. Keep changing the world your nonprofit unicorn