5 Essential Marketing Mediums for New Nonprofits
Marketing can be an uncomfortable subject for nonprofits. It’s not about selling things that people don’t need; it is an essential part of building your organization. The core goal of nonprofit marketing is creating a conversation about all of the great work you are doing as well as reaching out to new supporters. One of the most common problems faced by nonprofits is not having a large marketing budget. We’ve compiled a short list of 5 essentialÂ marketing mediumsÂ with this in mind.
Before you create any materials, do an analysis to determine what is important to your audience, what your organization does best, and what makes your nonprofit unique. For more information about this process, check out this article.
Everything, including yourÂ donors, is on the web. Well-built and designed websites make it easy for supporters to spread the word, donors to donate, and newbies to find information. Ideally, your organization should put aside a large amount of time and money to develop the website as it is the most visible part of your brand. Consider reaching out to local designers or agencies to see if they offer nonprofit discounts. There are also many low cost website templates available from sites such as Squarespace or Wix.
2. Email Newsletter
Email newsletters are a great way to keep your community updated. Content can range from program victories to fundraising campaigns and can be easily shared and forwarded. A report from Nonprofitmarketingguide.com states that email newsletters are the most commonly used marketing tool for nonprofits. MailChimpÂ and Tiny LetterÂ are two options that offer inexpensive newsletter templates and mail service. You could also work with a designer to build several easily-updated materials.
3. Annual Report
Though many nonprofits have been moving to a digital format, a printed version is a great tool to hand out at events or to attract corporate sponsors. Annual reports can range in price due to the variety of sizes and pages involved so keep numbers low if you’re cost-conscious. Annual reports are essential for big donors or corporate sponsors as they add a layer of legitimacy and importance to your brand.
4. Social Media
Social media is the cheapest (or free) way to reach your audience. Consider utilizing alternatives to Facebook based on your demographic. Also, Facebook has recently reduced the organic reach of posts so it’s worth looking elsewhere if you’re not willing to spend money to reach users. (Sign our petition to fix this here!) Instagram is great for sharing photos and videos while Twitter is best for intimate engagement and sharing relevant articles and they’re both free! Other alternatives include Vine, Pinterest, SnapChat, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Tumblr. Make sure these sites appeal to your audience before investing time in setting up a profile. Watch the video below to see why The Gift of Water’s campaign went viral.
There’s nothing like talking to someone face-to-face and many nonprofits report events as being the most helpful with fundraising. Make sure your event follows your brand principles and appeals to your audience. Also, attendees will want to learn more about your organization so have the above-mentioned materials ready for them. Consider creating event specific materials such as invitations, stickers, or donation cards.