10 Nonprofits Making the Most of the Google Ad Grant

This post was sponsored by Nonprofit Megaphone

When disaster strikes, nonprofits are often the first organizations to be creative and adapt to new circumstances. These inspiring organizations have taken the Google Ad Grant, which gives them $10,000/month to spend on ads in Google Search, and added in their own creativity to create spectacular outcomes. 

Hopefully these examples can help inspire some creativity for you too! We are proud to work with each of these nonprofits as our clients

Creating Zoom Backgrounds

Arts of Life (an arts nonprofit) & ECAD (a service dog nonprofit for people with disabilities) created fun, engaging Zoom backgrounds that people can download for free. 

ECAD’s Zoom background includes the ECAD logo in the corner, so people can show their support for the nonprofit and spread the word every time they hop on a Zoom call! Since they began marketing this with the Google Grant, they have seen over 60 new people per day coming to their website to download these backgrounds. 

Moving Workshops Online

When in-person classes were canceled, Wellfield Botanic Gardens converted them into online activities, made them free for anyone to attend, and allowed individuals to make donations if they chose. Additionally, Handspun Hope created an online sewing event through Zoom, and the USTA Mid-Atlantic Section created a virtual wine tasting series to keep participants and donors engaged.

Each of these organizations then used the Google Grant to get the word out about this opportunity nationwide!

Selling Custom Branded Face Masks

Face masks are becoming a part of everyday life in the area surrounding Aquarium of the Bay, so the organization leaped into action to raise funds and raise awareness at the same time. The nonprofit created fun, aquatic-themed masks that are on sale at the organization’s website. Each mask sold contributes to the wellbeing of the 24,000 animals in the aquarium’s care. 

Plus — the Google Ad Grant allows the Aquarium of the Bay to quickly get the word out across the country, even while everyone is stuck at home, through the power of digital media/marketing.

Buy One, Give One (to Local Healthcare Workers)

The Little Market is a fair trade nonprofit where every purchase makes an impact. Each product is produced by underserved artisans around the world, creating sustainable jobs and providing funds to invest in their communities. 

Managing the Google Grant for The Little Market is really hard for our team… because it’s so difficult not to buy everything ourselves! But this creative promotion makes supporting their work even more enticing, because purchases are matched with a donation to a local healthcare worker. So far The Little Market has been able to make over 600 of these donations. 

Fun & Educational At-Home Activities 

With schools closed and many students now learning from home, Girls Who Code saw an opportunity to launch an “at home” curriculum —  offering a new activity every week that teaches coding skills. Since these exercises are all delivered virtually, spreading the word online using the Google Grant was another quick win. 

Virtual Birthday Parties and Virtual Science Happy Hours for Adults

The IMAG History & Science Center provides fun, educational experiences for kids and adults: usually in person. When their facility needed to be closed for social distancing, the team sprang into action, creating virtual birthday parties for kids and virtual happy hour events for adults, helping replace some of the lost revenue from the pandemic. 

The cool part is that they can now market these activities nationally using the Google Ad Grant instead of being limited to only the surrounding area! 

Meal Delivery to Serve People in the Local Area

Thousand Pines Christian Camp and Conference Center is not usually in the business of meal delivery, but with campgrounds closed due to COVID-19, it was no time for business as usual. The organization noticed that this was a need in their area, and quickly stepped in to fill the gap. This also allowed the nonprofit to generate some additional revenue to help weather the storm. With the Google Grant, getting the word out about this new offering was effortless. 

A Common Theme: Matching Assets & Needs

Each of these nonprofits took stock of the assets they already had in place, including: 

  • Educational expertise
  • Artistic talent
  • Meal prep areas
  • An engaging brand
  • Physical products 

They then matched these assets with emerging needs: 

  • People working and learning from home
  • A surge in the number of Zoom calls
  • Difficulty making birthday parties special while they are remote
  • The need to wear face masks outside 
  • A desire to fill time at home productively and engage socially 

As a result, these creative approaches (and many, many more) were born. Add in the marketing power of $10,000/month at your fingertips through the Google Ad Grant, and suddenly, you have a lot to work with. 


We’d love to hear in the comments: what creative ideas have you seen?


Grant Hensel

Grant Hensel is the founder and CEO of Nonprofit Megaphone (NPM), which exclusively helps 300+ nonprofits acquire and manage the Google Ad Grant. NPM is a Google Ad Grants Certifed Professional Agency and has been recommended by the Head of Google Ad Grants.

June 4, 2020

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