The nonprofit space is surprisingly cutthroat. You’ve got your big organizations that get shout outs during NFL games and with CEO compensation that’s more than most people make in a lifetime. Then there are the other nonprofits, the ones that are grounded in communities and kept alive and helping through luck, sacrifice and very modest fundraising.
Rock Candy Media is always on the side of the little guy. This has been our ethos since our Austin advertising and marketing agency was founded in a pool house and has continued as we’ve grown over the years to expand into business consulting, search engine marketing and earned media. We’ve been privileged to work with clients from all across the spectrum, flexing our muscles in medical marketing, real estate, hospitality and consumer products.
All that flexing has developed some pretty large advertising muscles, muscles that we’re now using to uplift nonprofits and B corporations that need a boost.
The primary obstacle facing nonprofits and B corps is fundraising. Luckily, our whole job is convincing people to give other people money – so we think we can help. Strategic marketing for nonprofits goes beyond just fundraising ideas, of course. You want more than one-time donations, you want to build a sustainable movement.
Here’s how you do it:
Look As Good as the Work You Do
Nonprofit websites and social channels often range from “Geocities circa 1997” to “half-finished Wix template.” Sad as it may be, donors are fickle. If you want people to get the warm fuzzies when they donate to you, your branding needs to be considerably above PTA newsletter level. Your site needs to be designed with UX in mind and it needs to be mobile responsive.
Leverage Your Existing Network
If you’ve existed long enough to have a website, you’ve probably already got some people on your side. Don’t let them forget you. Email marketing reminds your donors that you exist and can keep online fundraising efforts roaring ahead. (Don’t believe us? See how many emails you received from your presidential candidate of choice.)
Put Your Work Out There
If you fed 200 people or rehomed 50 pets last weekend, you could be swimming in Facebook likes and shares, and with them, donations. If you want to bring new donors into the fold, you need to constantly be utilizing social media marketing and content marketing. Promote events, blog about new developments and share heartwarming pictures. A nonprofit marketing plan that doesn’t leverage social is no plan at all.
Spend Money To Make Money
For-profit organizations do this all the time and you shouldn’t be afraid of it. You’d probably be surprised by how many people feel the impulse to be charitable and just Google “charities near me.” A nonprofit marketing strategy with a modest search engine marketing campaign could probably do pretty well getting in front of those kind-hearted but directionless souls.
All of these steps would be pretty difficult for an underfunded, under-staffed nonprofit, but take heart. That’s where Rock Candy Media Gives A Damn comes in. We want to give back, so each year, we’re taking a limited number of Rock Candy Media Gives A Damn partners – you can be a nonprofit, b corps, 501c3, 501c4, anything – to work with at a reduced rate. If your nonprofit needs some marketing help, check out our Give A Damn page and we’ll see if you’re a fit.