Your cause deserves to be supported. And, to help you get the support you need, we’ve been talking about what it takes to motivate people to give to your nonprofit. In How to Raise More Money on a Limited Budget, we addressed the cost-efficiencies of targeting specific donor groups. In How to Help Donors Meet Their Goals and Raise More Money, we dove into the different motivations of different donor types and how to approach them. In How to Inexpensively Broadcast Your Nonprofit’s Message, we saw how to brand your nonprofit to reach the most people possible. Today, we’re covering how to stand out in the crowded nonprofit field.
Talk to Your Specific Audiences
What does your nonprofit do that no other nonprofit does? You may be able to think of characteristics to describe your agency, but your words may not accurately reflect the voices of your different constituencies.
To reach specific groups with your nonprofit’s message, you need to tell them precisely what you do and how you do it. You need to communicate the values that permeate your organization. You must determine the words, phrases, and symbols that best speak to the world the essence of your nonprofit.
Each constituency will value something slightly different about your nonprofit. You may tailor the message’s delivery and the value propositions you relay to each group, but your core message should remain the same. That way, your message is always based on their goals and perceptions, instead of just yours. And there is no doubt about who your nonprofit is and what it stands for. That identity is what you want to be repeated in the community again and again.
Survey your various constituencies to see how they describe your organization. Ask them what they find most exciting about your nonprofit. Ask them why they choose to be involved with your agency. Do your homework. Get the facts. Know for certain how your nonprofit is perceived in the community.
Articulate a Unique Marketing Position
A unique marketing position defines what a company brings to the market that is unique, that is, what sets it apart from all other companies like them. Your nonprofit’s unique marketing position statement tells the world where your agency fits into the landscape of all the other nonprofits, what your nonprofit’s niche is, and what makes your organization different than others like yours. Knowing your unique marketing position is paramount. To be competitive in the resource acquisition game, you need to tout your nonprofit’s uniqueness just as much as for-profits do.
You formulate your unique marketing position statement by taking your agency’s perceptions of itself, your clients’ perceptions of your agency, your donors’ perceptions, your competitor’s perceptions, and the community’s perceptions and figuring out the one thing all those perceptions have in common. In that one thing they have in common lies your unique value to the market. Once you know how you are different than everyone else, then you can start building clear, unifying messages around it.
The Results You Achieve
If you talk to specific donor groups and teach everyone in your organization to iterate one message, you can expect greater awareness of your nonprofit in the community, the public rallying to support your mission, more advocates for your cause. and increased financial support. That’s a huge return on investment.