baltimore Buildings
baltimore Buildings
baltimore Buildings
20NTC Session

Digital Marketing Policies for the Real (Messy) World


Do you have a digital engagement policy? Do you need one? (Wait, what is a digital engagement policy, anyway?)

A strong, thoughtfully crafted digital marketing policy can serve as your north star in navigating an increasingly complex digital world. Though they may sound bureaucratic, well-designed policies actually help us organize internally to both live our organizational values and to know what to do when a situation isn’t clear.

We’ll use the Sierra Club’s recent email-marketing policy initiative as a case study in how to develop digital policies that work – supporting a constituent-engagement strategy; reconciling the needs of internal stakeholders; putting in place guardrails and bumpers; and helping many teams work together in rapid-fire, constantly changing channels. We’ll cover how to structure research to achieve effective digital governance. And we’ll talk about change management and how to make yours a living, breathing digital-engagement policy with a long shelf life.

Learning Outcomes

  • Identify what digital engagement policies are & whether you need one
  • Effectively create a process for researching, drafting, and rolling out a new policy
  • Understand how to use a policy to pursue meaningful organizational change

Target Audience

Leaders, digital directors, & online engagement staff


Misty McLaughlin

Principal & Founder

Cause Craft Consulting

Equal parts nonprofit coach, organizational strategist, and digital expert, I midwife organizations through critical times of change. I have helped NGOs and nonprofits of all shapes and sizes to structure critical initiatives, from creating complex communications properties to crafting team structures and workflows to plotting digital-first tech ecosystems for engaging supporters and advancing a cause. My expertise spans assessing opportunities for an organization to grow, creating strategic and tactical roadmaps to get there, and supporting the process of implementing the necessary change. My deep love of the social sector began 15+ years ago, working on the inside of early nonprofit digital teams as a content manager and digital strategist. My personal mission is to help organizations effectively project their cause into the world.

Justin Birdsong

Senior Consultant

Cause Craft Consulting

Justin works with nonprofits – because he’s worked for nonprofits – to create tangible, sustainable change in the world with limited technology and resources. His expertise spans organizational dynamics and development, CRM strategy, data governance, support operations, and business process engineering. He has a particular knack for helping leverage the commitment nonprofit folx make every day to their missions and causes, and allowing their empathy and grit to form the foundation on which to build holistic long-term strategies.
Justin has served on the staff of such recognized change makers as the American Civil Liberties Union (Director of Data Operations and Strategy) and The Pew Charitable Trusts (Business Analyst), focused on providing organizations with the tools to promote data-driven decision making across fundraising, advocacy, and digital engagement. He previously led product development for the Cultural Data Project (CDP), now SMU DataArts, building software solutions for arts and cultural organizations and grantmakers to collect and leverage their financial and programmatic data for advocacy and philanthropy. Most recently, he led the implementation of the ACLU’s enterprise Salesforce CRM, and managed analytics program operations for the ACLU National Headquarters and 53 nationwide affiliates. He has also consulted as a technology strategist and project manager in industries ranging from fitness to software development to public interest law.
His Master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania has given him a unique ability to pair organizational strategy with thoughtful, holistic technology change. In his off-hours, he’s a writer, singer, and voracious student of leadership, antiracism & intersectional justice, and personal spiritual growth. He lives in Jersey City with his partner and the two best-behaved cats in the world.



March 24, 2020


10:30am – 11:45am