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2015 Nonprofit Communication Trends Report [Infographic]

Recently the team from NonprofitMarketingGuide published the 2015 Nonprofit Communication Trends Report, and it’s packed with some really interesting insights!

  • This is the first year that community engagement and donor retention have surpassed priority in acquiring new donors.
  • Nonprofit websites and email marketing are still the most important communication channels which hasn’t changed in the last year.
  • The biggest challenges are not enough time to create quality content and a lack of budget.

Check out the rest of the infographic below for insights on how to help your nonprofit’s communication in 2015!

nonprofit communication trends

Source: http://www.nonprofitmarketingguide.com/resources/2015-nonprofit-communications-trends-report/

Joel Widmer is the Founder and President of Fluxe Digital Marketing.

SEE ALSO:

Burnout by Rob Fitzpatrick

How To Evaluate Nonprofit Marketing Opportunities by Joel Widmer

free images for nonoprofits
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Where To Find Great Free Pictures For Your Nonprofit Blog

Here’s my secret stash of completely free photos for the taking. They don’t have any copyrights so you don’t have to worry about anyone coming after you. Just download and use them on your blog, email, website, marketing collateral or anywhere else!

Each site is updated with new photos daily : )

http://www.pexels.com/ – Searches multiple free stock photo sites

http://thestocks.im/ – Also aggregates multiple free photo sites

http://pixabay.com/ – You have to register but all photos are free to use and great selection

https://stocksnap.io/ – Free photo aggregator site. Hundreds of new photos added daily!

http://smartphotostock.com/ – Variety of different photos sorted by tags, which makes it easy to find them!

One last tip! Most of these photos are high resolution and therefore very large. If you want to reduce the size of the image so it does not take up so much space on your website, use this free compressor tool that will reduce it to a fraction of the size without compromising quality: https://compressor.io/

by Joel Widmer

What Taco Bell Can Teach You About Increasing Your Newsletter’s Impact

Photo by Mike Mozart

Taco Bell has a little secret.

In fact, most fast food joints are in on this secret, and you probably haven’t event noticed.

What’s Taco Bell been keeping under wraps? Just take a look at their menu. The majority of the 40+ item menu is made up of only 3 core ingredients: meat, cheese and tortillas. The ingredients by themselves aren’t impressive (probably the opposite), but the way they repurpose the ingredients in a million different combinations keeps people coming back. And it’s a strategy worth noticing.

Now, take a look at your nonprofit. Specifically, your newsletter.

Newsletters have been around forever. They started out on paper delivered to your business or home, now they’ve moved to email and can be delivered with the click of your mouse. They’re an effective tool to keep in touch with your audience — but there’s a catch.

They’re missing one BIG thing.

Newsletters aren’t timeless. You send out the email, your audience opens and reads it once, and then it’s either buried in their inbox or sent to die in their deleted items folder. The shelf life of a newsletter is only a few minutes.

Your audience can’t bookmark a newsletter like they would an article online. The articles aren’t indexed on your site, so they can’t be found by people searching on that topic. And new subscribers have no way to catch up on past issues.

The best fix for this is creative repurposing. It’s time to ask yourself, What content from my email or print newsletters could benefit my audience on my website?

Here are a few ideas:

  • If your newsletter contains news and events, create a “Community” section or “News” tab on your website to include that information.
  • If your newsletter contains industry articles or trends, post them to your blog or “Resources” tab on your website.  This gives your audience a simple way to find the information long after you’ve sent the newsletter.
  • If your newsletter contains new information about your nonprofit’s work, add the content to your “About” pages for additional, and more permanent, reading.

Not every part of your newsletter needs to be repurposed on your website. It’s a great strategy to have exclusive content to keep your audience interested and attract new subscribers. But one rule remains unchanged: Your content needs to be good.

Really good.

When you start repurposing content, you’re not just writing for your audience anymore. Anyone searching online could stumble onto your material. Take each audience member into consideration when using newsletter content on your website.

Start by repurposing your best content. Listen to the feedback you get from core follower’s comments and see what content gets shared by your followers. Use those insights to continually improve your content and watch your audience grow from the names on your email list to anyone searching for your website!

 

Simple 6 Point Guideline For Grant Writing

Screen Shot 2014-10-26 at 4.00.09 PMTo simplify your grant writing, use this simple guideline to collect and prepare your information.  Foundations and organizations often have specific formats they desire, but if one has the essential information, it should be easy to complete the applications.

1) Who:

is in need of this project-program

is to benefit

is to do the work

is to help pay  — matching $ etc.

is to manage and report back (accountability)

is ultimately in charge of the project-program

2) What:

is the reason that this is so important?

is the location of the project-program?

is the short term and long range outcome for the society?

is the benefit that makes this so important?

is the priority that distinguishes this effort?

is plan B if this request is not granted? Read More

3 Smart Ways to Grow Your Nonprofit’s Email List

NBB 3 smart ways email listThere’s no question that email has become the primary communication channel for nonprofits. And if that’s true, each of your marketing efforts should lead back to building your email list.

Here are my favorite ways to quickly and effectively build your email list and the reasons why it’s so important.

Why is Growing Your List Important?

If we don’t know why we are building our email list, there’s zero motivation to do it. There needs to be a strategy in place to see results.

Most people don’t understand the real benefits of an email list. They simply see it as a way to send out a monthly newsletter. A newsletter is one benefit, but here are several other reasons for building a quality email list for your nonprofit.

Keep Donors Up-to-Date

Email provides an inexpensive way to keep donors up-to-date. For example, you can create specific email lists for different types of donors, and send them updates based on what type of news interests them.

Read More

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How Often Should You Update Your Nonprofit’s Blog?

If you ask five people the question, how often should I post my blog, you will undoubtedly get five different answers.

In this post, I don’t want to give you another answer, I want to give you a framework for figuring out how often your nonprofit should blog once and for all.

But first,  let’s look at the question “how often should I blog” a different way. In order to figure this out we need to what know the goal of your blog is.

Is it to attract new donors?

Is it to keep your audience up to date?

Is it to grow your email list?

Or all of the above?

First, you MUST know what you are trying to accomplish through your blog. The next step is asking two simple questions: Who am I trying to reach? And what can I realistically make time for? Read More

Guidelines For Writing NBB Blogs

Screen shot 2014-06-17 at 12.19.03 PMWe’ve assembled some great writers and thinkers, like Joel Widmer, Shannon Litton, and Daniel White as our regular contributors, with some great part-time writers and guest-posters as well. As we officially launch this NBB site, I like to make the guidelines and suggestions known for what we’re looking for and trying to accomplish for each blog.

Dear blogger: Here’s what you need to know when writing for NonBoardBoard (NBB)

1) It’s OK to mention Jesus in your post. Most of the focus of NBB is on the business side of running a non profit. However, that shouldn’t make us forget the ‘why’ of what we’re doing.  Some guy 2,000 years ago worked hard to make sandals that helped the disciples walk farther and longer to reach more people with the gospel.  Even though he didn’t have a glamorous job, he was still very important at helping the disciples do what they do better.  The same goes for us.  We share our ‘non-glamorous’ expertise in skills like social media, accounting, efficiency, strategic planning, networking, etc, so that these leaders and their nonprofits can go out and preach the gospel, serve the widows and the orphans, heal the sick, rescue the slaves, and make an impact on the world.

2) It’s OK to mention mistakes in your post.  One of the driving goals of NBB is to remind leaders it’s OK for them not to know everything, and part of that is admitting mistakes.  In the ‘about’ section, I admit one of my mistakes that almost stopped NonBoardBoard before it really got started.  The important thing is that if you do make a mistake, you fix it, you improve, and you go on to make an even bigger impact. Read More

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An Easy (and Free) Way To Explain Your Nonprofit To The World

Adobe just announced the launch of a new piece of software that will be a game-changer for nonprofits.

It’s called Adobe Voice

It’s free. It works on only on your iPad (for now)  and unlike the rest of their products, it’s incredibly simple to use.

The free app makes it easy to create explainer videos. Explainer videos are short, simple videos used to tell a story,  explain a cause or capture the voice of your nonprofit.

Up until now, videos like this could cost a few hundred dollars to several thousand for a custom video. But with Adobe voice, your nonprofit can have your video created and sending to your audience in a day! Click the link below to watch the video:

http://youtu.be/fnS4VhEj0Z4

Two Easy Ways To Make Cool, Sharable Graphics

TorresReisSocial media has tremendous upside. But it sure eats up a ton of content! One of the biggest challenges we face as non-profit marketers is how do we effectively communicate in the social media space and balance the content demands. When so much of social is visual, how do you create great looking graphics and social media shareables without constantly sending work to a designer?

One of my favorite iPhone apps is WordSwag. WordSwag allows you to create quick and great looking shareable graphics, all you need is a quote. For example, Beth Torres, CEO of Make A Wish Middle Tennessee, recently spoke at our @NonBoardBoard meeting and many of her quotes struck me, here’s one that I created a shareable from in about 30 seconds:

Read More

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