Back to Basics – How to Market Your Nonprofit

Back to Basics – How to Market Your Nonprofit

While your nonprofit is doing good in your community, chances are it could be doing more to drive mission. From fundraising to outreach, your organization could be doing more, but with less. How can you achieve this? By going back to basics! Many nonprofit leaders go back to marketing basics by telling a good story, having a strong call to action, using strong data, and learning trends and tips through testing.

Marketing basics encompass many things. At their core, however, marketing basics give nonprofit leaders a clear picture on how their data can help them deliver more mission. All too often nonprofit leaders rely on more quantitative ways to reach their audiences. While this does work, especially in nonprofit settings, it does not lend itself to lasting campaign success. This approach doesn’t rely on data and it also doesn’t give any data back to your nonprofit. After any sort of campaign is finished, there isn’t any information you can assess or report on. More and more, donors are looking for data to determine where their funds should go. Not having data to prove the impact of your outreach can seriously hinder your organization’s growth.

So, how can you get back to where your organization needs to be? Follow these quick tips and tricks to go back to basics:

  1. Collect data and use it as your guide

    The easiest way to start being more data driven in your marketing approach is to, of course, collect data. Data is incredibly important for any nonprofit trying to prove their impact to donors (so all nonprofits!). Collecting and reporting on any data collected should be the number one priority – other than giving service to those who need it. Once your organization begins to collect data in a meaningful way, use that data to guide your mission and outreach. Take that data, assess it, and model your marketing around your findings. Data shouldn’t be scary. Embrace it and you’ll start seeing results.

  2. Back to basics – test your approach

    Once you’re finding and collecting important program data, now the fun begins. Start using your data to guide your approach and while you do that, test. Testing can range widely from A/B testing email headlines to conducting surveys in your communities. No matter which option you go for, testing is an important measure to take to ensure that you are making an impact in the best way possible. Think about it – when you fish, it doesn’t make sense to keep casting a line with a worm on it if you’ve found that the fish like crickets. The same goes here. Find out what your audience responds to and act on it.

  3. Look up industry trends and make them your own

    Lastly, don’t be afraid to look up and utilize industry trends. Look at what your neighbors are doing right and take note from them. They are trends for a reason, so don’t hesitate to use them. Once you find some industry trends you like, format them to fit into your organization’s story. Your point of view is unique and it doesn’t need to get lost in translation just because you adopted some widely-used techniques. Tell your story, but do it in a way that people will pay attention. Using industry trends will make that job so much easier.

Reporting Best Practices Guide - Back to Basics

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Going back to basics doesn’t have to be a hard or daunting process. If done correctly, it can be a great way to gain a more global look at your operations by collecting data in strategic ways. By adopting these methods, your organization will become data driven and your impact can be proven easily.