Branding is an important and pivotal factor in the success of many an organization, whether it is a profit-oriented one or a non-profit organization. The reason for this is inherent in the fact that an organization’s image is connected to what the branding portrays. In context, an organization's image, and how it is perceived in the eyes of the public are all determined by branding. Your brand as an outfit is exactly how the general public sees you, and so a good, effective branding strategy equals a favorable public image.
For Nonprofit organizations, branding influences not only your public image, but also on engagement, and in matters of fundraising. Your ability to engage the public and get them involved in the cause’s you champion rely heavily on how the average individual sees your organization and your ability to secure grants for said causes also relies heavily on this. All of this is achieved through brand management and Brand(ing) strategies.
Brand management, on one hand, refers to the efforts geared towards influencing how your organisation is perceived by the public. Branding Strategies are the plans formulated to create a favorable impression on the public.
While there are many differentiating factors between profit-oriented organisations and non-profits, ranging from structure to goals, often, the same kind of branding strategies apply to both, with only a slight variation to the general plan to suit the organization's specific needs. These strategies include;
Differentiate yourself from the rest. Your organization is like a drop in a mighty ocean of non-profit organizations, even when you specialize in an area that is seldom considered. Ask yourself what exactly makes your organization different from so many others. When a donor is faced with giving grants and donations, why should they consider your organization over others? With so many non-profit organizations rising to tackle social issues, there is often a plethora of options from which donors, trusts and foundations can choose to support, hence it is pivotal that you are able to show you are a cut above the rest. The ways to highlight this are by showing where you work, your modus operandi (methods and techniques), your goals, all structured in ways that show you are different from other organizations. The goal is to give people a reason to remember you over any other.
Personalization is a tool that gives the public you interact with a choice in how they are engaged in your functions. Simply put, personalization is your organization going about its goals and objectives but creating a structure where the public has an individual say on how this should be done. You could give your sponsors and donors the opportunity to choose which projects they would like to fund, instead of a general donation, or let the public create individual campaigns for support, as is done in peer to peer fundraising. The aim of personalization is to bring the public closer to your organization and letting them be involved in a most personal level.
Your ability to make the plight of the causes you fight for will go a mighty long way in creating an impressionable brand for your organization. Tap into the public's emotions, appealing to their kind nature, and you guarantee they can understand on a much more personal level just what it is you are trying to tackle. Through this they can understand the sadness and lights, thereby ensuring full commitment and engagement. If you are an organization specializing in providing relief to survivors of natural disasters, making a potential donor really grasp the feeling of the homeless after a natural disaster ensures they can fully invest in the funding of relief materials, and much more. You can also try to show donors that helping can be emotionally rewarding if they rally to your cause. Be Innovative Constantly looking for ways to improve how your organization works, and adopting new techniques portrays your organization as forward thinking and pace setting. This sort of portrayal often appeals to donors and sponsors, all the while creating a next to the stellar image for your brand. No doubt the brand of an organization is the centre of its efficiency and effectiveness. Adoption of these branding strategies will go a long way in creating a positive impact on your fundraising, public engagement and other activities. Build a great brand, and you can do greater things.
So now what? I hope this helps you gain some awareness and helps you craft a solid plan to make 2019 your best year yet. Let me know on Twitter @Jay_savy what resonated or anything I may have overlooked.
For more branding tips, tricks, tools, and useful anecdotes for your organization
Check out my new book Business Impact Brand
Thankyou for reading, sharing, and following!