How to Market Your Nonprofit

To increase awareness or expand the reach of your nonprofit organization, you need to market. The more you spread the word out about your organization, the more growth it will see, and ultimately, the more people you will be able to help. Getting noticed online and off can be challenging for nonprofits since they typically operate with a meager budget, but if you implement the tips below, you will soon see success.

Your nonprofit is a business, and like any business, you need to define your target audience. Defining your target audience will help you to market your nonprofit effectively. It is important to reach those who are likely to donate to or support your organization. To do so, it is helpful to create a buyer or donor persona.

Buyer personas are semi-fictional representations of your ideal customers. They help you focus your time on qualified prospects. It should include demographic details – age, gender, job title, and household income; which social media platform are they likely to frequent; which organizations do they support; what are their behavior patterns, motivations, and goals.

Now that you know who your ideal customer is, it’s time to let them know who you are.

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Optimize your Website

If you don’t have a website, try finding an in-kind grant where an organization is gifting you website development.

Your website is the digital representation of your nonprofit. It is your virtual brochure and as such is incredibly important to marketing your cause. But, potential donors may not see your site if it is not properly optimized. Use an SEO tool like UberSuggest to ensure that your web developer employed SEO best practices when developing your site, then do the following:

  • Add an email opt-in form to your site to get more email subscribers. Use a program like SendFox to manage your email list.
  • Use tools like to automate the growth of your website.
  • Add push notification to your site so that users will have the option of being notified in their web browser each time you update your site.
  • Be sure to include your nonprofit’s history and mission, breaking news/blog, upcoming events, success stories, media/press coverage, and an option to donate online.
  • Share engaging videos to capture the attention of visitors.
  • Be transparent on your website. Showcase your results. By doing this you will be able to build trust.
  • Your website must have a security certificate. Not only does this build trust, but it will boost your ranking on the search engines.
  • Update your website frequently. This will improve your search engine optimization, which makes it easier for people to find you online.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is an excellent way to keep people informed. When people opt-in to your email list, it tells you that they are interested in your organization and they’d like to get updates. It is therefore one of the most successful digital marketing strategies. The return on investment in email marketing can be as 80 to 90%.

Create branded and professional email marketing content. Create an engaging, personalized email marketing strategy. This will help your organization to develop meaningful relationships with supporters. Use an email service provider to accomplish this. Some ESP will offer discounts for nonprofits.

Social Media

Be present on social media. Use social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Linkedin, and Twitter to market your nonprofit. A social media marketing strategy is a cost-effective way to reach new donors and gain popular exposure. It provides an inexpensive (and most times free) avenue for reaching a large number of people interested in your organization.

Create an engaging presence on the platforms where you are most likely to find your target audience. Be social – you will get better results on social media if you create a dialog and not a monolog with your followers.

If the budget allows, advertise on social media. You can run an ad for as little as $1 per day. Set up landing pages where users can sign up for your email newsletter. Since your email list is not subjected to changing algorithms, it is an effective way to expand your reach.

Advertising Grants

Google offers qualified nonprofits a $10,000 USD in-kind advertising grant to use for Pay Per Click ads on their platform. Read some success stories here.

Facebook recently launched a COVID grant program where they are offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time.

Nonprofits or non-governmental organizations with recognized legal status in their respective country (equal to 501(c)(3) status under the United States Internal Revenue Code), may also qualify for advertising grants on Bing.

GrantWatch subscribers can find hundreds of advertising grants here.

Strategic partnerships

Forming strategic partnerships can expand the reach of your marketing efforts. Look for ways to work with people or organizations that are aligned with your mission. These could be other nonprofits with similar or parallel objectives, local volunteer groups, businesses looking for philanthropy partnerships, or government agencies.

Finally, use the media. Share your expertise with reporters who are looking for sources about timely issues, or send press releases to media outlets about your organization’s mission and achievements.

Start implementing these tips today, and watch your nonprofit grow.

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