Do non-profit organizations need to market? It seems like a question that would elicit a simple and unified answer, but many non-profit organizations fail to understand the importance of developing and implementing a strategic marketing plan, budget, and common marketing tactics that are very similar to their for-profit counterparts. While for-profit businesses capture revenue by selling a product or service to a consumer, non-profits attempt to raise revenue by convincing a supporter to donate money to direct a product, service, or benefit to someone else. “Nonprofit marketing can be challenging, as the organization must convince its audience to give money without getting anything concrete in return.”
Charitable organizations use many of the same marketing platforms and channels as for-profit companies but they usually have more limited budgets so digital and online (website) communications opportunities offer the most benefit for marketing spend. Building brand awareness and value in a non-profit is important. Projecting a consistent brand message to a targeted audience will achieve increased engagement and reach. “Having a unified brand message goes a long way toward helping you connect with your target audience,” says Jon Holbrook, Product Marketing Manager at Mailchimp. “When you communicate your brand message consistently, your marketing is more persuasive and credible, which drives business results.”
Clarity of message when communicating to a supportive audience will elevate engagement and lead to improved responses. Focus the message on an organizing principle and a few unique selling points that motivate the target to take action. Create a memorable message that is personal and human. Apply the “keep it simple and short” technique and avoid overused platitudes and buzzwords that often bore the audience into complacency. Too much information rarely inspires action.
Work to instill a sense of community around the non-profit mission. A community is as relative to a charitable organization as loyalty is to a for-profit enterprise. Establish and maintain text and online social media communities where supporters can be kept up to date on the organization’s progress. Produce quality blogs, videos, and webinars to highlight current successes and achievements that build brand purpose and organizational trust.
Charitable organizations may not be profit makers but they are businesses and share the space with other non-profits competing for a finite number of donation dollars and supporters. Attracting a loyal audience requires a strong entrepreneurial attitude and leveraging ongoing partnerships with an established community. Many of the same marketing fundamentals that apply to a profit-based business also apply to charitable organizations.
Junction Creative Solutions (Junction) has significant experience in helping non-profits and charitable organizations achieve their mission. To learn more about Junction’s unique qualifications, call 678-686-1125 today.