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7 Tips For Stretching Your Nonprofit Marketing Dollars

Marketing efforts of nonprofit organizations center on building trust, reaching across channels to communicate with members and powering fundraising efforts. More simply put, the marketing and communications efforts of a nonprofit are the backbone of the organization’s success. Facing added competition for resources, perhaps a seasonal cash flow, the need to recruit qualified staff and constant pressure to reach out to new donors, what changes can nonprofits make to ensure their marketing dollars stretch as far as possible?  Here are seven tips for marketing your nonprofit better. 1)    Create a Marketing Mission and Plan This is different from your organization mission.  A marketing mission outlines what message you want to communicate to your donors and the public.  It also defines marketing goals for a specific timeframe and identifies strategies the organization will take to meet those goals.  As a follow-up, schedule regular meetings to discuss progress towards these goals.  With a plan in place, your team will work much more efficiently, saving your organization money in the long run. 2)     Put a Fresh Twist on Things Is your organization’s image looking dated?  Putting a fresh twist on your logo and branding can help revitalize interest and appeal to a new demographic of donors.  Make sure you work with someone experienced in graphic design and marketing.  You know how they say a picture is worth a thousand words?  Your logo is worth a million so make sure you have it right.  No friend of a friend who does graphic design on the side. Put your trust in a professional. 3)    Gather Up the Herd When volunteers and donors become inactive, it’s a good idea to try to win them back with a re-engagement strategy. It’s often less expensive to target a current supporter than it is to find new prospects. Consider reaching out to them via targeted direct mail campaigns, email campaigns and via social media.  Maintaining the interest of inactive person or company helps you make the most of your existing contact lists. 4)    Find a Digital Printing Partner You Trust Nonprofit brochure design & printingDigital printing offers nonprofit organizations the ability to affordably produce shorter runs, on demand.  Because nonprofit organizations communicate with their stakeholders and donor base through a variety of print mediums, such as newsletters, annual reports, appeal letters, brochures and more, a print partner is perhaps one of the most essential support connections a nonprofit can have.  A relationship with a quality commercial print partner that knows your organization will help you stretch your nonprofit marketing budget much farther than if you are working with multiple companies on a project-by-project basis. 5)    One Source for Multiple Locations Does your nonprofit have multiple branches? Consider consolidating all your materials ordering, printing, and shipping through one source such as an online web-to-print store.  This allows all branches to place orders for business cards, standard forms, marketing materials, letterhead, banners and more through one centralized online platform. Benefits include a reduction in administrative and sales time in securing orders, enhanced brand control as proper uses of logos and formats are controlled, and improved accounting as appropriate approvals and charge-backs are pre-programmed into the system. 6)    Repurpose Your Content Think of ways you can use and re-use your content in a variety of ways.  Ideas range from something as simple as re-using snippets from blogs or newsletters for social media posts to more advanced concepts like using a cross-media campaign as a project template that can be repurposed in many forms to raise awareness, funding, and recruitment. 7)    Get Out & Mingle Don’t forget the importance of face-to-face interactions.  While most nonprofit communications come via print, social media and email, offering opportunities to interact in face-to-face can provide a boost in volunteer and donor engagement.  Even though events require some initial investment for items such as vertical banners, branded table covers, backdrops and other visual elements, the costs going forward will be less while the benefits continue to accrue.


Looking to make improvements to your nonprofit marketing efforts? AlphaGraphics of the Twin Cities, with locations in downtown Minneapolis and Apple Valley, is a professional business-to-business print, design and direct marketing partner with 20+ years of experience working with nonprofits.  We’re sensitive to the unique challenges nonprofits face. When you work with us, you’ll find that we’re more than order-takers, we’re guides. Our professional team will work side-by-side with you to conceptualize, design and produce engaging cross-media campaigns and communications that engage and excite donors and volunteers about your cause.   We also offer agOnline, an award-winning web-to-print platform. Contact us today to set up an appointment with our team at either 612-340-1111 (Minneapolis) or 952-953-5522 (Apple Valley).

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