This one’s for all you nonprofit development professionals. Your job is HARD. Marketing is a difficult field, but nonprofit marketing/fundraising is a completely different level of difficulty. Getting people to not just care about what you do but give their time and money to sustain it is quite the task.
And if you don’t have board or staff buy-in, your job is that much harder.
If you’re first stepping into a marketing or development role for a nonprofit, start from the inside out. Yes, outside donors and supporters are vital to sustaining your organization’s mission. But you can’t build off a foundation that doesn’t exist. They say you can’t expect other people to love you if you don’t love yourself first. Well, you can’t expect people disconnected from your mission to care about what you do if your own staff doesn’t.
When people see an organization’s staff proudly advocating for their employer, they feel more empowered to support it. They see that it’s more than just a job. It’s not enough for staff to not say anything negative. They need to be advocates out there in the community. They need to share your organization’s posts on social media, and tell people about what they do and why it’s important.
The best way to foster this type of support is by creating an environment of empathy, support and kindness for your staff. Company culture is vital to staff productivity, happiness and, yes, buy-in. People who feel valued are more productive, they care more, and they’re more eager to promote what you do on their own time.
So when you’re working on marketing your nonprofit and raising awareness for what you do, remember that the people who can make the most impact on donor and supporter perception are often right there in your office.
And, as always, if you need help, give us a shout!