Ensure a good fit between you and the prospective volunteers.
What to look for in a generalist:
- constant experimentation – The best marketers are constantly learning. They look for opportunities to test different ideas and to experiment with different techniques.
- clear thinking – a clear, simple message makes a powerful brand
- project management skills
- number crunching – describe spreadsheets they use in their day job to analyze their customer database.
- Ensure they have received links to the Menu of Projects that corresponds to the project scope. Have they taken the time to read it before your meeting?
- their thoughts on the project scope.
- Judge their comfort level with the project. Marketing is both an art and a science. Are they more comfortable with the creative, artistic side of marketing? The number-crunching, “science” side of marketing? Do they have examples of similar work they have done?
What to look for in specialists:
- flexibility to adapt to different clients
- clear, uncluttered style
- review their portfolio for examples similar to your non profit
What to look for in every volunteer consultant:
- listening skills
- asks more questions about your non-profit, than gives answers
- focuses on the needs of your non profit, not their own accomplishments
- uses language that you can understand
- candor, without being disagreeable
- spirit of collaboration, willing to work with you to figure out the answer rather than presenting you with the answer
- gives you a fresh perspective
- helps you think things through
Understand what’s in it for them:
Treat volunteer consultants just like paid consultants, but pay them in ways other than money. Ask them which motivators in this list apply to them.
Other subjects to discuss:
- are they available when you are available?
- potential developments in their work life or home life that might change their availability?