Tag Archives: non-profit

Market Your Nonprofit like Movies

Yes, you read that right! Marketing your non-profit like movies are will take your fundraising to the next level. Movies make a ton of money every year across the globe. Hollywood alone makes net profit of over thirty billion dollars a year. Analyze how the last movie you saw was marketed to see if there are any ideas that will click with you. Your marketing initiative will, of course, depend on the size of your organization and your budget constraints but rest assured that this technique will bring you the ROI you’re looking for.

Besides the star power that boosts a movie’s success, marketing plays a huge role in putting the movie in the forefront of everyone’s mind. Below is a chronological step by step process of how movies are marketed and how you can be inspired by the techniques to market your non-profit organization.

1. Initial Teasers
For your non-profit organization, sending out a teaser in a newsletter and spreading it across your social media pages will create anticipation for what’s coming. The teaser can be text-based but if you want to go all out consider making a video teaser. Within this step, you can also publish a first-look type of image that features various aspects of the cause you’re supporting without any description.

2. Series of Trailers
Just like movies push out trailer one, two and so on, you can create a series of trailers for your marketing campaign that caters to varying demographics. This is your chance to entice people into supporting your fundraising campaign so give them all the reasons they should not only give donations but also inspire them to take it upon themselves to promote your campaign to their circles of influence.

3. Press Releases, Conferences & Interviews
This requires a lot of involvement from your team: your salesperson, public relations manager, social media coordinator but most importantly the individual that is the face of your marketing campaign. For the United Nations, stars like Angelina Jolie are selected to be brand ambassadors so that they can embody the values of the organization as well as promote the features of your product or service.

4. Commercials, billboards and social media ads
All three of the above mediums can display video ads which happens to be the most effective to grab people’s attention. Commercials are slightly different from trailers because they are usually more compact.

5. Movie premier
Movie premiers are big events with a lot of media hype, great food and an after party. Hollywood stars dress up in their most lavish outfits and have fun while celebrating the work they have completed. If you can have a great gathering for the launch of the cause you’re endorsing and invite the who’s who of your industry.

6. Post release marketing
This is a great time to gauge how the campaign was received by your audiences so put your team to work to create surveys, make phone calls and set up interviews with your supporters as well as the prospects that didn’t end up committing to your cause. Find out the hits, misses and the opportunities so you can take the lessons learned to your next campaign.

7 Ways to Avoid Fundraising Burnout

“With fundraising, especially in the non-profit sector, there’s always more work than there is time. From courting potential donors to hours of grant writing, there are very few times a fundraiser’s job feels done. The amount of responsibilities mixed with our desire to help others and do a great job is a recipe for burnout. It is possible to avoid burnout by following some of these tips.

1) Take Time Off

Take your time off! Nothing helps rejuvenate us like having time away from work. This may almost seem like a foreign concept for the non-profit world, but trust me, it’s possible! The best, and most logical, times to take breaks are after fundraising events. You worked hard to plan that gala, festival, luncheon, etc. You went to every corner of the earth to recruit donors, vendors, sponsors, volunteers, attendees, etc. so reward yourself with a nice break.

While it may be tempting to get right back on the horse – don’t. You are usually provided with vacation time. Use these days. Non-profit fundraisers are notorious for working on their days off. One man I supervise planned on taking his laptop on his honeymoon. Just don’t do that. You may justify it by coming up with excuses like that you are only working for a few minutes, or that the organization really needs your help. Or maybe it’s that if you take time off all the work is just waiting for you when you come back and it will be overwhelming. Stop the excuses. Take your time off. The world and your employer will survive without you for a bit.”

Read the full post here.

Starting a Nonprofit

Group Of Business People Having Board Meeting Around Glass Table

“Welcome to our general subject guide to starting a charity or nonprofit organization in Canada. Here you will learn about some of the basic things to consider before you decide to start a nonprofit, as well as resources and tools to help you through the early stages of the process.

If you know of a resource that you think we should add to our collection, please send an email to editor@charityvillage.com with the details.

Initial Questions

The nonprofit sector is one of the fastest growing sectors in North America right now, and with almost 150,000 registered charities and nonprofits currently operating in Canada, it shows no signs of slowing down. Of course, as more and more organizations are added to the mix, groups must become increasingly creative in the planning and carrying out of their mission. Keeping this in mind, there are several questions that should be considered before you begin the process of starting your own nonprofit organization or charity.

Do you have a clear understanding of the problem or need you want to address? Is that need ongoing or short-term?”

Read the full post here.

How New Overtime Law Affects Nonprofits

“A letter in support of the U.S. Department of Labor’s new overtime rule, from the perspective of one nonprofit.

The U.S. Labor Department (DOL) has now released a final rule updating overtime pay protections for millions of white collar employees across America. Under the new ruling, employees with salaries less than $47,476 (with the level adjusted every three years) will be guaranteed overtime pay when they put in more than 40 hours of work in a week. This rule will sweep broadly across the economy, affecting working people and their employers in every sector. By guaranteeing overtime pay for overtime hours the new rule will sharply reduce opportunities for employers to require their employees to put in extra hours with no pay at all. The new rule also advances the dual purposes of the Fair Labor Standards Act’s overtime pay requirements: to ensure that workers are fairly compensated for all their hours, and to spread hours and work opportunities among more employees and job seekers.”

Red the full post here.

Increased Corporate Reporting Good For Nonprofits

Portrait Of Businesspeople In Modern Open Plan Office

“More than four out of five (82 percent) of S&P 500 companies published corporate sustainability reports in 2016, representing a four-fold increase from 2011. The 82-percent figure marks a highpoint during the six years that the Governance & Accountability Institute, based in New York City, has tracked such reporting.

The trend upward could open more and more opportunities for nonprofits to foster relationships with corporate partners, according to Hank Boerner, chairman and co-founder of the institute.

The increased reporting started at the turn of the century when companies were in the midst of inflating figures – leading to the burst of the tech bubble, according to Boerner. Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act in 2002, aimed at corporate governance reform, but the law did not prevent the 2008 recession. During the recovery, corporate managers began taking it upon themselves to be better corporate citizens, he said, reporting on corporate governance, policies, and environmental management.

In 2011, the first year the institute began tracking S&P 500 companies for sustainability reporting, 20 percent reported data. That leapt to 53 percent in 2012 and 72 percent in 2013, coming to a more steady climb in 2014 (75 percent), 2015 (81 percent), and 2016 (82 percent).”

Read the full post here.

Best Nonprofits To Work For (2017)

“A classic source of frustration in many workplaces goes something like this: An employee expresses an idea during a meeting. The boss hears that comment but lodges it in the back of the brain and weeks later it comes out as the boss’s idea, forgetting that the colleague started it.

“It’s classic that managers do this accidentally, deliver it as if it’s their own idea. Obviously, that’s frustrating for that employee,” said Charles Best, founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, a 17-year-old nonprofit in New York City. “Whenever there’s a workplace where employees feel like they will be acknowledged and get the justified glory for being the one to come up with an idea, they’ll come up with kick-ass ideas,” he said.

“Giving credit where credit is due is one reason why people would want to be here,” Best said.

Recognition, trust and support — both monetary and otherwise — are among the critical tenants that make up a great nonprofit to work for, according to The NPT’s 2017 Best Nonprofit To Work For. The NonProfit Times partnered with Harrisburg, Pa.-based Best Companies Group for the seventh annual report, which ranked DonorsChoose.org as the No. 1 organization among medium-sized employers and No. 1 overall among the 50 nonprofits recognized. DonorsChoose.org last made the list in 2015, ranking No. 3 overall after a No. 8 ranking in 2014.

The Best Nonprofits To Work For report is data compiled from a thorough organizational assessment. Each participating nonprofit completes a questionnaire along with a confidential survey completed by employees. Business partners are also polled. The information then is combined to analyze and rank the workplaces. The organizations were further categorized as small, medium and large. Explanations of the categories accompany those stories.”

Read the full post here.

57 Engaging Fundraising Event Ideas

“Fundraising event ideas have become a staple in many organizations as a way to help with fundraising event planning, entertaining and engaging your donors.

The key to having a successful nonprofit fundraising event is by encouraging engagement while still keeping it fun. If you can’t get your attendees engaged then your event will quickly lose steam. So make your initiatives fun, try new ideas and see what your donors value the most.

One idea to get your nonprofit started is to use text reminders and more traditional promotional channels to boost participation which is the first step in guaranteeing the success of your event.”

Below is a list of over 50 event fundraising ideas that you can easily implement at your organization. Whether you’re a small or large organization, there’s definitely something here that will be sure to fit for your organization.

Fundraising Event Ideas From A to Z

5K Run/Walk
Low-cost with high ROI…easy to promote fundraising event idea…team crowdfunding fun for all ages. A 5K Run/Walk fundraising event can be all these things for your nonprofit organization. Not only can you raise funds for your cause by incorporating crowdfunding for nonprofits into your fundraising event, but through the sharing of your campaign by participants with their network of friends and family, you’ll also organically raise awareness for your org’s mission.

First choose the size and location of an event you can reasonably manage. Then save a date and set some realistic fundraising goals for your nonprofit. Themes add an extra element of fun…survival races and fun runs seem to attract more participants!”

Read the full post here.

5 Nonprofits With Successful Marketing Campaigns

“According to the Content Marketing Institute, “content marketing is a marketing technique of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content to attract, acquire and engage a clearly defined and understood target audience—with the objective of driving profitable customer action.”

Nonprofits try hard to plan online content to connect with the right audiences. This concept of creating content to engage with your audience is nothing new, but nowadays it is becoming more important to achieving online success.

While 92% of nonprofit professionals use content marketing, just a quarter of those professionals believe they are effective. They reportedly each use, on average, 11 different content marketing tactics, with in-person events, social media, online articles, electronic newsletters, and videos being the most common.

Here are eight nonprofit organizations with thriving content marketing campaigns:

1. March of Dimes

The March of Dimes has been around since 1938. Since then, they’ve helped to save thousands of babies.

There are so many inspirational and life-changing stories that the organization has made public to show how their organization truly makes a difference. In recent years, they chose to go to the Internet and begin content marketing so that people could follow the life of its 2012 national ambassador.

They used a multi-dimensional approach to content marketing: they began to blog, share the story on Facebook , create videos on YouTube, and share announcements on Twitter. This campaign helps to raise awareness and contributes to funding their mission.

By allowing the people they affected to share their stories online, the March of Dimes has created a content strategy that aligns with its mission: ensuring that every single baby gets a good and healthy start in life.”

Read the full post here.

How to Start a Non-profit Organization


If you’re wondering how to start a non-profit, you must have a great plan for what your non-profit will entail, what kind of services it will provide and how it will achieve its goals. That’s great! Non-profits fulfill an essential role in our societies and because their goal is not churn out profits, they are able to cater to community needs way more effectively than a business could. Because of this, the government not only exempts them from certain taxes but also provides grants and funds to support their efforts.

URstore has five tips for you to get your non-profit organization set up:

1. Do your homework.
If your goal is to support a cause, it shouldn’t matter whether it’s your non-profit or an already established organization that’s working towards that cause. Find out if there are existing non-profits that deal with the cause you’re passionate about. If you find one, work for it or start a local chapter for it. Your goal for starting a non-profit should most certainly not be to generate a salary for yourself because truthfully, your organization may not even receive the funding it needs to operate on a basic level.

2. Write a business plan.
Like for-profit businesses, non-profit organizations must have a mission statement to put in writing what its purpose is and what kind of needs it will fulfill. Besides the mission statement, make a list of key people involved such as the board of directors and board of governance. It’s also important to create a budget for the first year, set up a marketing plan and list your sources and ideas for fundraising.

3. Register your non-profit organization.
This are a few steps to registering and the requirements depend on the bylaws of the city you’re going to establish your non-profit organization. First, you must register its name. Next, you must incorporate your non-profit organization by filling out the necessary paperwork.

4. File for tax-exempt status.
With the business plan ready, you can now apply for a tax-exempt status. Being a non-profit organization, you’re not required to pay taxes so long as you have been approved by the federal revenue agency. It’s important to note that your organization can still make a profit so long as it doesn’t benefit any proprietor, member or shareholder. The key is to reinvest the profit or expand your services and increase the spending budget.

5. Create a fundraising plan.
Your fundraising plan will consist of goals, costs, timeline and sources. Creating a solid plan will mean setting measurable goals and assigning deadlines to each goal. There can be two types of sources for fundraising: fixed and variable. The fixed ones will be sources that have committed to support a cause led by your organization for a set amount of time. The variable sources will be one-time donations as well as any other grants you may receive over the course of the year.

How to Spot Financial Fraud in a Nonprofit

“We all want to believe that nonprofit corporations are full of hard-working people committed to improving society—and most are. But even the most well-meaning nonprofits can get into financial hot water.

Unfortunately the temptation to cover up financial problems can be particularly seductive for nonprofit managers.

For starters, nonprofits are only required by federal law to report discrepancies of more than $250,000, or over 5 percent of an organization’s annual gross receipts or total assets.

By the time a nonprofit is that far into the weeds, the impulse to cover up the problem—versus coming clean and risking losing millions from spooked donors—can be overwhelming.

A shocking Washington Post investigative piece published October 26, 2013 discovered that from 2008 to 2012 over 1,000 nonprofit organizations had indicated on their federal disclosures that they had discovered a “significant diversion” of assets. These were losses attributed to theft, investment fraud, embezzlement and other unauthorized uses of funds.

Perhaps the most well known example of this came at the hands of Bernie Madoff. When nonprofit organizations like Yeshiva University and Hadassah, both of whom lost significant funds invested with the Ponzi scheme, but fraud also commonly includes simple mismanagement and even stealing.”

Read the full post here.