Everything You Need to Know About Nonprofit Marketing

Nonprofit marketing is a tough thing to wrap your head around. There are so many different approaches to take, and none of them is a silver bullet on their own.

In order to pick and choose strategies that are right for your nonprofit, it’s easiest to start by looking at the big picture. In this nonprofit marketing roundup, we assembled the best of our nonprofit marketing advice, going from a broad view all the way down to the nitty-gritty details.

Whether you’re looking to try out a whole new marketing approach or revamp the one you already work with, we have lots of resources for you to sift through. Bookmark this page and come back to it whenever you’re looking for a refresher on marketing!


Online Marketing

Often, the first place people go to learn about your nonprofit is your website. Because this is their first interaction with your nonprofit, it’s crucial to make a good impression. If your website looks secure and inviting, then you’ll have a better chance for visitors to stick around. Time spent on your website pays off, too—online donations were 7% of all fundraising last year.

Creating a website for your nonprofit is certainly an investment. It’s takes a good chunk of time and work to get it up and running, but it’s an essential tool to have up your sleeve. If you do it well, your website will support your nonprofit for a long time coming. So get cookin’! You can still introduce visitors to your nonprofit in a creative way, even though you aren’t face-to-face.

We have some advice for how to “make your house a home” by making a website with your own flair. Don’t just stop there, though. From eBooks to webinars, there’s a heaping handful of other ways to raise money online. Let’s take a look.

How to Launch Your Nonprofit Website 

7 Ingenious Fundraising Ideas to Raise Money Online 

7 Best Practices to Create a High-Traffic Campaign Website 

5 Web Design Trends and How Your NPO Can Take Advantage 

Four Ways to Increase Online Giving Conversions


Email Marketing

Online marketing and email marketing go hand-in-hand. For many nonprofits, email is the best way to garner funds and to get the word out about your cause. It’s a helpful channel to showcase your work and to point readers toward your website or a landing page. If your email layout looks like it needs more than a little work, though, it’ll hit the trash faster than you can press send.

Design should always come after ideation, though. Before crafting your next email, ask yourself: what am I trying to do with this? Your objective will guide the design that you choose. If your email is made to get people to click, then create something that delivers on that promise. Build a compelling point A (your email and call-to-action), point B (your landing page, survey, etc.) and a seamless transition between both.

If you can’t think of a purpose for your email, then something needs to change. Don’t waste your resources putting effort into an email that won’t return the favor. With some practice (and maybe a little bit of testing), your emails will be hitting home runs in no time.

How to Win at Email

6 Email Marketing Hacks to Increase Open Rates

5 Ways to Make Your Email Fundraising Appeals Sound More Human

The 10 Elements of an Effective Fundraising Email Appeal

The Most Important Part of Your Newsletter Isn’t In Your Newsletter


Content Marketing

Content marketing isn’t quite as self-explanatory as online or email marketing. Although it might seem like a big pill to swallow, content marketing just involves publishing content that shows the impact of your efforts and gives value to the reader.

Content marketing doesn’t have the immediate, tangible results that online or email marketing might have. Instead, it helps you look at the long-term. By giving value to your readers, you’re forming a relationship. If you immediately ask for money, you might be successful the first time, but your future efforts are less likely to succeed. If you take the time to offer value and form a relationship, then you’ll raise committed donors that’ll stick around.

With content marketing, it’s easiest to begin with some simple tactics, then to step up to the next level. Blogging or growing your social media presence are both easy places to start. They’re useful platforms for sharing stories, insight and impact. From there, you can start dreaming bigger. Whatever content you provide, it should always be doing two things: giving value to your audience and pointing toward your organization.

Content Marketing Strategy: A Comprehensive Guide for Modern Marketers (Hubspot) 

[PODCAST] Reconstructing Content Marketing for Nonprofits | Ft. Robert Rose

Spreading Your Mission, One Moment at a Time 

Four Steps to Write the Right Content on Your Nonprofit Blog

[PODCAST] Storytelling as Mission Moments | Ft. Lori Jacobwith 


Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing is gaining traction—quickly, too. While jumping on the bandwagon isn’t always the best strategy, you won’t want to miss this train. Fundraising on mobile can streamline your donation process, offer a new donor network and much more. By making use of mobile fundraising, you can connect with your donors and supporters on the go.

Like in content marketing, social media is a vital element here. It’s not made specifically for mobile fundraising (like text-to-give technology, for instance), but it’s still an important part of your larger mobile strategy. It’s an engaging way to interact with the people that support your nonprofit and to grow your nonprofit’s presence. If you’re feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of mobile marketing, we have a wealth of resources to make this job a little bit easier.

Text-to-Give Fundraising: Making the Most Out of Mobile 

Mobile Fundraising: A Complete Overview — Part one, Part two and Part three

How to Create a Stress-Free Social Media Strategy

Social Media for Nonprofits Starter Guide | Part one and Part two

[PODCAST] How to Use Social Media as a Fundraising Tool | Ft. John Haydon


Nonprofit marketing is a Grade A challenge, but it’s a crucial component of the way your nonprofit operates. With a great staff and marketing strategy, you can form the backbone for growing and promoting your organization. Now, you have the education you need; the only thing left to do is to get started. Get to reading and get to work!

nonprofit marketing

Claire Shinn

May 2, 2017

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