January 24, 2013
I’ve always imagined one of a company’s biggest PR headaches would be increasing prices on its goods and services. What a marketing nightmare. Most of the time the goal is to tout having the lowest price, so having to do the opposite seems painful.
And that’s exactly what’s happening to GiveMN — one of my favorite local nonprofits. On June 6, GiveMN announced its transaction rate for donations made on GiveMN.org would increase from 2.9 to 4.9 percent (due to the cost increases from Razoo, GiveMN’s technology partner). This rate change takes effect today, July 1.
When the news broke, I put on my marketing hat and kept my eye open for negative reactions on social. Even though more than 200,000 Minnesota donors have used the platform and more than $73 million has been raised through GiveMN, I expected there would be haters — as any company would expect with a price increase.
There were a few remarks, like this Facebook comment:
GiveMN didn’t have to defend itself online — others did that for them. But the amazing thing has been that not only has the community responded to an online comment here and there, but without instigation or involvement from GiveMN, the community has declared today, July 1, “I Heart GiveMN Day.”
GiveMN has such a loved brand, strong relationships with customers, and a fantastic product, that their price increase has turned out to be the opposite of a marking nightmare — it’s more like a marketing phenomenon.
Here’s an email Andy Brown, one of the organizers of “I Heart GiveMN Day” sent out last week:
To thank GiveMN for everything they have done for the community, please join us in making July 1 “I Heart GiveMN Day.” If you or an organization you care about has benefitted fromGiveMN, please show your support in one of the following ways:
GiveMN’s greatest achievement has been revealing the generosity of this community. It’s a movement we built together, one donation at a time. On July 1, help keep the movement going by speaking up to say “I Heart GiveMN!”
I’m sure there’s many marketing and public relations tactics a company can take to handle and prepare for a price increase. But to get a reaction like GiveMN, takes years of brand development and relationship building. Can you think of other companies that would garner this kind of positive reaction from a price hike?
Today my Facebook avatar will be the “I Heart GiveMN Day” logo and I’ll be tweeting and supporting the organization. I hope you’ll join me.
August 6, 2013