It is always a great idea to have a marketing strategy for your nonprofit organization. Many do not see the value of having one, but marketing for a nonprofit should be similar to a business. While your goals may differ, the same methods are still used to gain support and funding for your organization. Marketing is also seen as very costly, which is a reason why some nonprofit organizations steer clear of it. However, there are several low-cost options that can be used to effectively use web marketing without emptying your entire budget.
Here are five low-cost marketing strategies and tips that can help increase your exposure through web marketing:
1. Create an incredible and memorable site.
First and foremost, develop a fully functional website that represents your organization. If you are serious about your organization, then you want to make sure you have a professional website. While there is nothing wrong with a do-it-yourself website with free hosting, it is not advisable for a serious endeavor. It is better if your website does not include words at the bottom such as “This is an XYZ (free web host) website.”
Also, no matter how small or big your website is, an aesthetically pleasing design and royalty-free photography will give a great impression and bolster trust in your website visitors. You can always make a very small nonprofit organization look magnified with a professionally designed website.
2. Blog often.
Just like having a nice website is important, so is having an updated blog. A blog will allow you to post new and up-to-date happenings within your nonprofit, relevant feature stories, press releases and more. By having this item, you will keep your visitors interested, improve the stickiness of your website, and encourage your content to be shared on social media and elsewhere. Do some research into your demographic of customers to find out their philanthropic interests, as well as how your organization can assist and motivate them to get involved in your organization. Highlight all the incredible things your organization is doing in the community and how you are working hard to accomplish your mission. Provide useful and applicable information that will keep them coming back for more. Blog often, at least once a day. More is always better! This will bump up your information in search engines and make your material easier to find across the web.
3. Develop simple, sleek, and consistent branding for your organization.
Many times nonprofit organizations will not put a lot of thought into branding. First, nail down a very simple logo that is memorable and attractive, but not too complex. From there, develop a list of what you want the organization to be about, such as quality service, excellent results, etc. Determine who you are and what sets you apart from other nonprofit organizations with similar goals. From there, make sure that all of your website, letterheads, signage, and so on are all branded with the same logo and communicate the same language and ideas. It is important to be focused because individuals will not trust brands that seem to be all over the place, without a consistent idea, vision or plan.
4. Become active on social media.
Social media has become a force to reckon with these days and must be a part of the marketing toolkit of every business and organization. In any marketing strategy, it is important to go where the people are. The majority of individuals you are looking for tend to frequent major social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, or Instagram. To simply neglect social media can be detrimental to your organization. Individuals want to know that you can relate to and reach them, and are relevant. If you seem like a dinosaur company, your support will be minimal. Create engaging content. This will capture the interest of your target group.
5. Don’t forget about your opt-in.
Create an email opt-in at the top right side of your website page. Ultimately, when you transmit content through social media, you want to send clients to your website through links, with the opportunity to capture their email through an opt-in form. If you offer something for free, in exchange for email, you may have a higher rate of opt-ins. This is important is because you do not want your organization to be fully dependent on a social network. If that social network disappears, starts charging outrageously, or kicks you off for some reason, you will have collected value email addresses so that you are able to smoothly continue your relationship with your clients. Email them often with useful information.