Competition for resources, donors and volunteers is greater than ever. Social media and online marketing create excellent opportunities to connect, but they also create new forms of competition. Online, your organization is likely to be competing for clicks against another worthy cause.

Consider your current branding and marketing strategy. Is your story clear? Does it resonate with your various constituencies to create loyalty and engagement? Is it attracting those who are newly interested in your mission?

Your brand must work hard, especially given the innumerable online marketing messages battling for consideration. If your brand and message are unclear or outdated, consider refreshing your approach.

Many organizations turn to specialty marketing or consulting agencies or experts for assistance. Outside help is desirable because those inside the organization can be too close to the mission to have objectivity about brand effectiveness. Getting third-party input can be enlightening.

Finding the right online marketing consultant is a must. Look for someone who understands the specific marketing needs of nonprofit organizations and is highly experienced in digital channels.

The engagement will likely start with an audit of your current efforts—your website, search engine optimization (SEO), social media plan and return on marketing investment (ROMI). This step might also involve focus groups and other research to elicit feedback from various target audiences.

Once you establish these benchmarks, you can adjust or even relaunch your online efforts to be more targeted and effective.

This might involve an overhaul or merely a few tweaks, depending on what you learn from your audit and research. Of course, a refreshed brand demands a rollout plan, so you’ll need to include that in your budget.

Nonprofit organizations can’t afford to be complacent. Be sure your online presence is up to date so that your important message gets through.


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