As a nonprofit organization, it can be tempting to focus all of your resources on the work that you do, rather than on promoting your organization.
Or, maybe you don’t think that marketing is your thing.
Or maybe you don’t think you don’t have a story to tell.
Or maybe you look at the price tag of even beginning to promote your awesomeness and it makes your accountant preemptively call you and change the pin on your debit card in trepidation.
Whatever your reason to avoid looking at tools to help your organization’s brand, visibility or promotion, effective marketing is just as crucial for nonprofits as it is for for-profit businesses.
This is ESPECIALLY true for small nonprofits that may not have the expansive budget to spend on magazine ads, billboards, social media sponsored posts like the big organizations do in your community.
However, by failing to market yourselves, you may miss out on the opportunity to reach new donors and volunteers, raise awareness about your cause, and engage your current and potential supporters.
Here are a few reasons why marketing is critical for nonprofits, even those with limited budgets:
Increasing Awareness: Marketing allows nonprofits to raise awareness about their cause and the work that they do. This is especially important for smaller nonprofits that may not have as much visibility as larger organizations. By using various marketing strategies, you can help people understand your mission, who you serve, and the impact you make in the community.
Building Relationships: Marketing is a powerful tool for building relationships with donors, volunteers, and other stakeholders. By communicating regularly and effectively, you can cultivate long-term relationships that lead to increased support and engagement.
Attracting new donors and volunteers: Marketing helps nonprofits attract new donors and volunteers who are passionate about their cause. By reaching new audiences and engaging them in your mission, you can build a more diverse and sustainable support base for your organization.
Leveraging Resources: Marketing is not always expensive and in many cases can be done with limited budget, so the key is to leverage
But we get it. You have a finite amount of time, a limited budget, and not a ton of patience to learn yet ANOTHER program or system.
Well, of COURSE we’re going to help you out here! To comb through the interwebs to find what works best or what’s even available can be overwhelming. So (because we love this number, clearly) here are our top 5 favorite free marketing tools for nonprofits that can help you spread the word about your organization and increase awareness of your cause:
1. Canva for Nonprofits: Canva is a graphic design tool that makes it easy to create eye-catching graphics for social media, flyers, and other marketing materials. The nonprofit version of Canva provides access to a wide range of templates and design elements, making it a great option for organizations with limited design experience.
2. Google Ad Grants: Google Ad Grants is a program that provides nonprofits with $10,000 per month in in-kind advertising on Google. You can use the advertising credit to create and run text and image ads on Google search results, reaching your target audience, and promoting your organization’s website and programs.
3. Mailchimp: Mailchimp is an email marketing tool that allows you to send newsletters, updates, and other communications to your supporters. Mailchimp offers a free plan that includes basic design and campaign tracking features, as well as the ability to send up to 12,000 emails per month.
4. YouTube Nonprofit Program: YouTube offers a nonprofit program that provides free access to tools and resources designed to help organizations create and share video content. This can include features such as adding calls-to-action to your videos and customizing the look and feel of your YouTube channel.
5. Hootsuite: Hootsuite is a social media management tool that allows you to schedule posts, track analytics, and monitor mentions and mentions of your organization across multiple platforms. The free version of Hootsuite allows you to manage up to 3 social media profiles, and it’s a great option for small nonprofits with limited resources.
These free tools can be very useful in creating an effective marketing and fundraising plan. They provide a GREAT starting point for any organization and can help you reach your target audience and effectively spread the word about your cause.
Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that these tools are just the beginning, and that you’ll need to work to develop a sustainable marketing plan, concentrate on getting stories of impact in the community to draw inspiration from and keep those plans as donor centric as possible… But by using these tools, you'll be able to lay a good foundation to rock your marketing a lot better, quicker and best off all, the price is right!
Oh, and if you need a quick FREE guide to have at the ready to reference this later? CLICK HERE to get your 5 Must-Have Free Marketing Tools for Nonprofits DOWNLOAD!
You got this!