marketing mission Blog

Nonprofit Marketing Campaign for Success

April 15, 2023

marketing mission Blog

Nonprofit Marketing Campaign for Success

April 15, 2023

Most nonprofit marketing campaigns are scattered and fail to affect change.

They feel like someone strung together a bunch of random thoughts, hoping it would all make sense to the audience. But when the outcome of your campaign is mission-critical, you can't trust chance.

Today, I’ll teach you how to create a nonprofit marketing campaign strategy to set your campaign goals, streamline your marketing & reclaim control of your time.

  1. We'll start by reviewing what a campaign is and why it's important
  2. Then, we'll dive into creating your campaign plan
  3. You'll use the workbook to help you set your campaign goals and strategy

At the end of this short video + content below, not only will you have a nonprofit marketing strategy for your next campaign, you'll also have a time-saving tool to go back to again and again. You can use this framework and strategy to kick off every nonprofit marketing campaign with confidence and ease.

Social Media Post vs Campaign

Let's clarify the difference between a social media post and a campaign. Many folks don't realize that there is a difference.

With a post:

  • You can only address one specific detail of your offer or appeal because you only have a limited amount of space to write your captions.
  • You can't appeal to every person in one post. There are multiple types of decision-makers, emotional and rational, slow and fast.
  • Your audience might miss it because only 10% of your followers see individual posts

That's where planning your campaign in advance comes in handy.

With a nonprofit marketing campaign:

  • Have several pieces of content that appeal to each person and how they think
  • Clarify your message, so your supporters see and understand your content
  • You're recycling your content. This allows each person the time they need to make a decision whether they should donate, volunteer, or follow through on another ask.

When you strategically plan a series of posts or emails, you’ve mapped out a campaign. By planning these campaigns once, you can optimize and repeat them quarterly, annually, or as needed.

Types of Nonprofit Marketing Campaigns 

The three main types of nonprofit marketing campaigns are awareness, acquisition, and retention.

Awareness Campaigns

Awareness campaigns are all about getting your name out there and making sure people know who you are and what you stand for. These campaigns are important because they introduce potential supporters to your cause and plant the seed for future relationships. 

Acquisition Campaigns

Acquisition campaigns are focused on converting potential supporters into actual donors or volunteers. Essentially, these campaigns aim to turn someone from being interested in your cause to being involved in your cause. 

Retention Campaigns

Retention campaigns keep current supporters engaged and invested in your work. These campaigns show donors the impact their support is having and inspire them to continue their involvement.

As you can see, each type of campaign serves a unique purpose but they're all ultimately working toward the same goal: growing relationships with key audiences to further the mission of the organization. When planning your next marketing campaign, think about what type of campaign will best achieve your objectives.

Within those three main campaign objectives, there are multiple types of nonprofit marketing campaigns, all serving their own unique purpose and tied to one goal. Here are a few examples:

  1. Event or Gala
  2. Giving Tuesday
  3. End of Year Campaign
  4. Email Marketing Campaign
  5. Social Media Campaign
  6. Acquisition Campaign
  7. Paid Advertising
  8. Volunteer Recruitment
  9. Advocacy Campaigns

What is your SPECIFIC campaign goal?

This may seem a bit redundant, but it is really important to state specifically what you are trying to accomplish with your campaign. Here are some examples: 

  1. Promote a fundraising campaign
  2. Increase brand awareness by 50%
  3. Raise $25,000
  4. Gather community feedback or content

What is the topic of this campaign?

Now that you've identified your campaign purpose, let's narrow it down even more to the specific topic for the marketing campaign. It's important to only focus on ONE topic per marketing campaign, as adding too many can distract from the ultimate purpose of this campaign. Here are some examples: 

  1. St. Cloud's Virtual Gala
  2. Miami Beach Clean Up
  3. Little Rock's Giving Tuesday Fundraiser

What is the call-to-action for this campaign?

The call-to-action is a one or two sentence summary of your campaign. Think of it like the elevator pitch for your campaign or the first paragraph of a press release. 

With your one-liner, it’s important to prioritize clarity over cleverness. You can leave the puns, innuendos, and insider language at the wayside because we want this campaign to be as clear as possible. Here are some examples: 

  1. Register for the St. Cloud's Virtual Gala on October 13 and join in the fight to protect historic landmarks from developers.
  2. Donate on Giving Tuesday and support the future of Little Rock.

Who are you trying to reach with this campaign?

If you want people to take action with your organization, you first have to understand who you are wanting to take action. As idealistic as it sounds, “everyone” is not the right answer. Of course, as nonprofit leaders, we’d love it if everyone hopped on board to champion our cause, but the chances of that happening are slim to none.

Because of this, your marketing message will vary depending on your audience and campaign goals. That's why knowing exactly who your audience is for every campaign is so crucial.

Start by making a list of common traits between your current donors. If you don’t have donors or are trying to expand or pivot your audience, then create an ideal customer in your head and list those traits. Think about job titles, age, income level, gender, location, goals, etc. 

What channels do you want to run your campaign on?

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, Email, Website? 

What type of marketing campaign will you use? This choice depends on your audience preference, budget, and brand engagement levels, among other factors

Thinking about which ones perform the best, which ones allow you to pay for advertisements, which ones have the best engagement, and where your stakeholders are hanging out can help you narrow this question down. 

Alright, with this, CONGRATULATIONS!

  • You've completed your nonprofit marketing campaign strategy.
  • You know your goal and desired outcomes
  • You have clarity on the topic and messaging
  • you know who you're trying to reach
  • and you've determined the channels you'll run your campaign on.

If you struggle with any of these things, guess what? That's what I do here at Marketing Mission: Maximized Marketing. The Maximized Marketing Intensive is an experience where in just one week, we create your valuable Nonprofit Marketing Toolkit™ - the powerful assets you need to streamline your marketing and free you to increase impact and funding without losing your mind. 

If you feel like the Maximized Marketing Intensive would be beneficial, hop on my calendar so we can talk more about this.

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