Whether you’re working full-time, part-time or own your own business, chances are you’ll be involved at some point with helping a non-profit. If you are, getting exposure can make or break an event or fundraising activities. Getting free or almost free PR and marketing isn’t impossible, no matter what nay sayers might tell you.
Here’s a List of 10 Ways to Extend Your Non-Profit’s PR and Marketing Dollars
- Find Agencies Who Do Pro Bono Work. Find out who knows who in your organization and ask if there’s anyone with advertising or PR ties. You may have an opportunity to get some free work – even if it’s with a smart intern who’s being supervised.
- See Who’s Advertising on Digital Billboards. There’s always a chance that digital advertisers have extra ad space that they’re willing to donate. If your cause is compelling enough or dear to their hearts, your message could be seen on high traffic billboards. Never ask, never know.
- Check out Google Grants. I’m not an expert on Google Grants, but what I’ve read sounds interesting, especially if your charity qualifies for a $10,000 in-kind AdWords campaign every month. Read the fine print to know the rules and what you’re committing to.
- Consider Crowd Funding. Crowdfunding may be an option for your charity, but you never know until you take a closer look. It’s another way to fundraise from outside your regular community in a more global way. Pulling on heart strings still applies.
- Write Press Releases Once a Month. Keep the media up to date with news about your charity. Press releases can be sent to journalists, a PR distribution service — paid or free, as well as to sponsors and partners. Use the link to promote your cause on emails and for supporting information when you’re creating a pitch.
- Build a Media Contact List. Research reporters who are covering your topic or local area to see if they’re interested in a feature story. Building a media list can be as simple as creating an excel spread sheet and including all pertinent contact information. Be sure to update the list on a regular basis to stay current.
- Approach bloggers who may be interested in your story. Use Google to research top bloggers to share your story, and/or think about guest blogging for other sites. Practice your story telling and pitch in advance to make sure it’s short, sweet and to the point. Ask yourself, why readers will care about your cause. That’s what an editor wants to know.
- Contact Marketing and PR Departments at Local Universities. Would a non-profit campaign like yours be a project a University may be interested in? Make a few calls or send an email or two. You may gain an intern and a few tweethearts.
- Organize Local Events Not Just Fundraisers. Hosting local events where you’re not asking for money will give you an opportunity to share your message, share the love and hopefully, share some of the work! Find people who are committed, like-minded and are influencers in their own right. Hate to recruit? Reframe your thinking. It’s multi-level marketing with a heart!
- Speak and Talk Up Your Charity. If you are your brand wherever you go, you’re also a brand ambassador for your cause. Tell the world to change the world. Speak on behalf of your charity whenever you get a chance and build a network who cares.
Lastly, you’ll always want to make a list of PWLY and PWBIY. People who love you and people who believe in you. Be sure that you have their full contact information to stay in touch and thank them often. These key supporters are your raving fans.
Show them the love and they’ll return it.