Content Marketing Guide for Non-Profits and Charities

Marketing in the non-profit world comes with unique considerations. As charities and non-profits expand their efforts in the world of content marketing, it’s important to remember audiences engage with these entities differently and this reality should inform the very foundation of their marketing strategy. Not only what content to create, but how to make the content.

Non-profits and charities can succeed in ways other brands can’t, and this presents inspiring content marketing opportunities. But fundamentals, as always, rule. Here they are:

Be Heard

The Goal: Standing out from your competition to build awareness.

The Solution: Video.

Don’t mistake video as the place to regurgitate your marketing brochure. The medium offers a completely different opportunity to showcase a dimension of your work through imagery and sound in a way no other collateral can. Don’t make it about facts and figures. Focus build emotional investment in your message.

The two most effective ways of taking in information are reading and watching a video – but our brains can absorb and process information 60,000 times faster by video than text. Video is one of the most compelling ways to convey complex messages quickly, and many charities & non-profits deal in complicated or nuanced areas. For example, if you do anything with the environment, video is your best option for teaching the issue and building emotional investment in it. An emotional connection to your message is paramount.

Storytelling connects with your audiences better than any other format, and more brands are waking up to this than ever before. Since non-profits are trying to connect with the viewer on an emotional level, they are in a unique position to utilize storytelling better than any other branding space.

Don’t mistake video as the place to regurgitate your marketing brochure. Click To Tweet

Be Trusted

The Goal: Gaining the trust of your target demographic.

The Solution: Podcast.

A popular maxim is the online audio world is: podcasting is intimacy that scales. The podcasting format is custom made for niche audiences and people of discerning tastes which creates a barrier of entry for lazy brands but presents a unique opportunity for brands who want to connect directly with their leads.

You have two options: you can advertise on podcasts, or you can host your own. Depending on what your cause is, you may be able to connect with podcasters in your niche as an advertiser or influencer. However, the marketplace is alternatively begging for interesting, authoritative voices speaking on topics they care about and there’s no aversion to having the message in the most basic format. Consider creating your own.

Podcast audiences tend to be more educated and wealthier,  with 68 percent holding a bachelor’s or higher degree, and 49 percent earning an annual household income of greater than $75,000. They are a great demographic for non-profits, however they tend to be the most technologically literate and are adverse to many online marketing tactics.

This does not mean success cannot be had as either a podcast advertiser or a podcast producer. According to a survey audioBoom conducted with Edison Research, 65 percent of U.S. podcast listeners are likely or very likely to further investigate a company they hear about on a podcast, and 64 percent have bought a product or service they heard about through an audio show. Because there’s so little advertising in the world of podcasting, those who are there stand out.

Podcasting has never been fully embraced by many marketers despite its incredible popularity. Many brands and  marketers prefer to work in visual mediums, and the audiences are much more protective of their content. However, the very reason it is difficult can be the very reason you succeed above the rest.

Related Article: Become a Content Marketing Expert And Stay That Way

Be Culturally Significant

The Goal: Become a valuable social resource and lead the pack.

The Solution: Blogging/eBooks

Your job as a non-profit or charity is to be an authority on which you advocate, not only to add value to the organization but also to do your cause justice. You want to be the leading name in whatever your niche is. While video and podcasting are great to get people interested, you also want to be a provider of in-depth information when people are searching for it. This applies not only to potential donors, but also journalists and important decision makers.

The technical benefits of blogging have been well-established for years. Having a regularly updated blog helps with your website’s SEO. They’re cheaper and faster to produce than other content types. They’re great content to disperse regularly throughout social media. They can act as hubs for other types of content, and they’re a fantastic landing page to use to collect leads or newsletter sign-ups.

Outside of those benefits, consider how your organization relies on numbers and statistics to prove the importance or severity of your cause. For the inquiring minds seeking to learn more, blogs are the ideal way to share statistics, research, and in-depth information, For anything detailed or long form, blogs are your best choice to start building this resource. Once you start writing blogs, you can think of distilling the content of your most popular ones and repurposing it into an infographic. Once you get enough written down, you can then consider creating an eBook from the most important themes, or arcs, found in your blog. These eBooks then become a great free resource for you to collect emails for your newsletter. This is a strategy you can start with right now.

With these strategies you can create content which actually raise the profile and trust of your brand. Using this content you can become remarkable, become trusted, and then become indispensable. The non-profit sector is fertile ground for telling human stories and the brands utilizing this will dominate.

Facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail
Nick Rayner

Nick Rayner

With years of experience in content creation, digital marketing and working with emerging brands, Nick embraces the Social Media and Content Manager role with gusto.

nickrayner has 12 posts and counting.See all posts by nickrayner