Branding Matters: How to Pull It Off as a Nonprofit
Businesses invest huge amounts of money in branding, but looking to make earnings is not the only reason why you need to deal with a branding strategy. It is just as important if you are looking to make an impact.
Just look at some of the world’s most notable nonprofits, such as Cancer Research UK, The Red Cross, and World Wildlife Fund. They didn’t become widely recognized only because they were doing good things. They developed and implemented an effective brand strategy. Branding is an essential tool for nonprofits because it helps you connect with the donors and the community while making your name known, and your cooperators proud.
However, this is no small challenge to tackle when you are a nonprofit which usually operates with a limited budget. This guide will help you find your way through the maze of difficulties and tasks on your way to a strong brand.
Stand out from the crowd
According to recent estimates, there are 10 million charities, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and nonprofits worldwide. While it is great to have so many organizations trying to address important issues which burden our society, it also poses a problem for a specific organization to find donors and convince them that they should give their money for this specific cause.
Branding helps you differentiate yourself from other comparable organizations and attract more donors and supporters. This is relatively easy when you are fighting for a particular cause and when your mission goals are not too dispersed. Here are some questions that need to be answered if you want to emphasize the differences between you and others:
- Is your work limited to a specific region? Maybe you are the only organization working that sort of things in your surroundings.
- Do you have a particular approach to solving a common problem?
- Do you have a goal other organizations are not pursuing?
Personalize the cause
With personalization becoming such a huge thing in the business market, it was about time for it to leave its mark on the nonprofit sector as well. One of the excellent examples of such an approach is peer-to-peer fundraising. This principle allows supporters to create their own page, share their experience, and appeal to their family and friends.
Another strategy is to allow donors to choose projects or programs to which they want to give their money. Samahope, for example, is a crowdfunding website which allows the donors to fund a specific doctor who provides life-changing medical care in an underserved area.
Give back to those who give
It’s not a small thing to donate to charity in this turbulent economy, even for large donors, and especially for regular citizens. Make sure they are aware their goodwill is appreciated, and use that as an opportunity for branding.
Thank you notes and diplomas are some of the most common ways to show that, but you can do better. If, for example, you are in the business of helping less fortunate children, a thank you video from those who received a donation could warm the hearts of donors.
Also, custom lapel pins with your logo can be given to those who decide to support your cause or even sold on fundraising events. It is a small investment which yields significant returns.
The power of being relatable
People rarely decide to give to a cause because they know it’s the right thing to do. They need to feel the connection with the ones they are donating to, but also with the ones who donated to the same cause before.
Your website and social media profiles are the best ways to promote those individuals who are donating or volunteering at your nonprofit. Share their stories, ask them to write their experience, and wait for reactions.
It is also essential to create a bond with those that are in need of help. Even if you are tackling a major problem, such as water quality, you should share the stories of the individuals who are affected by poor water quality.
Be present in the media
While the branding starts with a logo, cause, and personality, it doesn’t end there. The media can be a major help in your efforts, and that’s why you should keep them on your side. Your social media campaign is one thing, but outer factors are achieved differently. PR persona who will come out and speak about your goals, react to different issues, and talk about your actions should be outgoing and a firm believer to your goals.
Brand recognition is not just about collecting money. It is about representing an idea or a mission. With some effort invested in strategies and campaigns, you will get to the point where your brand will be able to speak for itself, and that is, after all, the ultimate goal.