Develop a Marketing Plan for Your Nonprofit Organisation

By QuickBooks Canada Team

2 min read

Developing a regular list of dependable donors and patrons to your nonprofit organization or business often proves challenging, especially for new startups and charities. This initial difficulty makes it all the more important for you to evaluate every aspect of your organization, determine your target audience, and cultivate marketing habits that bring in funding and raise awareness for your cause. While creating a marketing plan might seem out of place in an organization focused on helping others, it’s essentially a neutral tool that gives back what you put into it. If you aim to persuade others into having conversations about causes you find important, you can get your nonprofit off to an excellent start.

Play to Your Audience

The first key factor in marketing your nonprofit comes down to knowing your audience and playing matters they find important. For example, statistics show that Baby Boomers provide 47% of all charity donations in Canada, which makes engaging this demographic especially important. These donors respond well to direct mail and email marketing plans, so you have the potential to boost donations by tailoring marketing specifically to Baby Boomers. This requires you getting to know your audience a bit better, something you can achieve with donor surveys and A/B testing of marketing material. While emotional factors matter, it often works best to keep marketing efforts light, fun, and educational so they spread organically, but don’t be afraid to appeal to donor vanity, especially when promoting your cause on social media.

Project a Clear Vision

Stoke interest in your cause by projecting a clear vision for how your organization can help. Create a high-impact tag line that puts your cause at the forefront, and carry it through with an easy-to-understand mission or vision statement. Once you hone in on your mission, break it down into a short 30-second pitch in a public service announcement format that’s easy for anyone to understand. Be sure to keep this messaging consistent throughout your organization, and focus your marketing materials on taking your vision wide. Work on reaching out to your community at large, whether in person or on social media, when you need to get people excited about your current projects and bring some new volunteers onto your team.

Create Interesting Content

Keep donors interested and focused on your mission by creating interesting content that engages return visits to your website. Build a branded nonprofit blog that you or staff members update regularly, and use it to expound on issues related to your cause, share your organization’s success stories, spotlight volunteer efforts to raise awareness, and release information pertinent to upcoming fundraisers and drives. Be sure to add photos, videos, and graphics to your posts to make them more shareable, and consider bringing in a social media manager who understands just how to promote your nonprofit in real-time.

Partner With Local Businesses

Local nonprofits can benefit greatly by teaming up with areas businesses to promote their causes within their immediate communities. These collaborations bring both you and the small business in question more exposure while giving the for-profit business a healthy dose of good PR. This works best when you focus your business recruiting efforts on areas that complement your nonprofit organization’s mission, such as working with a pet supply store to encourage food donations for your animal shelter.

Getting the funding you need for your nonprofit doesn’t have to take up lots of time or cost lots of money. By knowing your audience and leveraging the talent within your organization, you can develop and execute an effective marketing plan that brings donors to you.

Information may be abridged and therefore incomplete. This document/information does not constitute, and should not be considered a substitute for, legal or financial advice. Each financial situation is different, the advice provided is intended to be general. Please contact your financial or legal advisors for information specific to your situation.

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