Limited staff. Tight budgets. Awareness gaps. These are a few of the challenges facing nonprofits in 2013. The question is, how does an organization combat these challenges while growing support for its cause? Just ask Bernard Kavaler of Express Strategies, Rich Hollant of co:lab and Greg Latz of The Village Ride, presenters at Connecticut Valley PRSA’s May 2nd workshop ‘Growing Support for Your Nonprofit.’
When working to build community, increase awareness and heighten support for a cause, the presenters offered the following insights:
- – Everyone knows someone. Whether it is the cat sitter or the dentist, everyone knows someone who is passionate about your cause. For Greg, this meant finding cyclists, as well as friends, colleagues and clients of cyclists, to participate in The Village Ride. Tap into your network to uncover connections that can help advance your cause.
- – Give people more of what they are looking for. If your most widely attended event of the year is always in Fairfield County, keep it in Fairfield County. Further, look for other opportunities to engage those attendees. If you secure most of your organization’s donations through email marketing, keep up the e-blasts. Simple enough, right?
- – Ask yourself, ‘what do people really need to know?’ What matters most to internal audiences may differ significantly from external audiences. Know your audiences, what triggers them to take action and how best to reach them with the information they value most.
- – There is power in putting yourself in other people’s shoes. To accurately define your organization’s audience persona(s), you need to put yourself in your audience’s shoes. Combine with tip three for optimal success.
- – Align your nonprofit with other organizations that have similar missions and core values. Strategic partnerships, be they between nonprofits and for-profits or between multiple nonprofits, can help broaden an organization’s reach and expand its bandwidth. Think about the benefits the organizations can offer one another and the best way for everyone involved to reap the rewards.
- – Treat budgetary confinements as a blessing, not a barrier. While it can be frustrating and challenging to work within a tight budget, it forces organizations to be selective with the communication channels they use and community building tactics they employ. Brainstorm creative strategies for achieving your organization’s goals that deliver maximum ROI with a reasonable financial investment.
For more tips on building a hardworking nonprofit communications strategy and effective community-building campaign, check out my previous post from Growing Support for Your Nonprofit for six additional nonprofit marketing tips.