Whist you might be fundraising, you’re not necessarily selling anything directly; and if you are, it’s for a charitable cause.
Whether you run a Social Enterprise or a traditional charity, Content Marketing for nonprofits differs from the traditional marketing of big business, making lots of money from a series of products or services; a business that can be direct in their messaging, and increase traffic to their website with a specific, long term, financial goal: “we need x amount of traffic in order to achieve x amount of sales this quarter”.
Yes, usually nonprofits’ goals a little more complex than this and, although usually, like any other organisation, there are financial goals set every year, there are often also a whole host of other goals underpinning the focus of the organisation.
And, particularly when you offer a lot of different services, each with its own goal, the marketing that you have to do around each of these can be pretty tough to get right.
But how do you get it right? With Content Marketing, of course.
Content Marketing is a great way for any organisation, nonprofit or otherwise, to achieve a lot of really positive results from their marketing activity.
A really soft, informal, and informative way of communicating with audiences new and existing, Content Marketing puts the spotlight on the benefits of using your service, rather than directly selling the reader something, and that’s why it’s perfect for nonprofits.
It’s versatile and allows you to talk to lots of different audiences about lots of different things. The hardest part is ensuring you keep it up, as once you start, you can’t stop!
If it’s something you’ve never done before, Content Marketing can seem a bit of a daunting exercise; taking dedication, determination, and the relentless mining of new, interesting content to titillate the emotional ‘tastebuds’ of the generous public on a regular basis, whilst appealing to individuals who would benefit from the services you provide.
Set up a blog: if your website doesn’t have a place for a blog or news section, you need to make one, fast! Keeping a regular blog not only gives you a practical space to try out some content marketing, it also provides you with a dedicated area that can be regularly updated, which search engines love, as well as a reason for audiences to keep returning to your website.
Decide what you want to gain: do you want to attract new service-users, build your profile, promote yourself as a thought leader in your field, or raise funds? The chances are, you want to do all of them, but you need to spend some time considering that, as the content you create for each of these goals will be different.
Tell a story: audiences love stories. And when we talk about ‘stories’ in a marketing sense, no, we’re not talking about fairy tales, we’re referring to success stories; case studies from people who have used your services and benefited considerably from them. Use your Content Marketing as a way to tell your users’ stories and shine a light on the incredible work that you’ve been able to carry out – celebrate individual success and individuality.
Integrate it: all this lovely, rich content needs to go somewhere; it needs love, and it needs attention. Make sure that you use it cross-platform. And by that we mean: link to it on your Social Media pages, use it in your email marketing campaigns or use it to launch email marketing campaigns, and whenever you launch an entire marketing campaign… use it. Make sure everything is joined up. Don’t just write a blog post and leave it there for audiences to stumble upon; amplify it.
Use it to build relationships: want to reach out to another organisation? Invite them to contribute to your blog as a guest. Want to appeal to a brand new audience? Reach out to an influencer in that area and ask them to write about you. Content Marketing is a great way to build relationships, get in front of brand new audiences, and show how influential you are in your field.
Give your opinion: Content Marketing is a great way give your opinion on things related to your field, and events happening on a regional or national scale without being political; it’s an ideal place to present yourself as a thought leader in your field, and say things no-one else has said before. Be brave and be smart.
Well, there you have it. A brief and informative breakdown on Content Marketing for nonprofits; why you should be doing it, and how you can start. So, what are you waiting for? Give it a go! And if you need support?
Get in touch now - it could be the start of something special.