Content Marketing for Nonprofits Part 2

Content Marketing for Nonprofits Part 2

September 22, 2016 Lynette Garet Marketing 0 Comment

How to Develope Your Nonprofit Content Marketing Plan


Strategic content marketing is critical to any organization’s success, nonprofit or for-profit because they map your goals and the ways you’ll attain them. They also get a lot of lip service: create ‘em and forget ‘em. Not unusually, institutions develop strategic plans because they seem to be de rigueur; everyone has one. However, a comprehensive and strategic content marketing plan involves everyone from the board to the graphic design department. Done correctly, it will not only improve communication with your stakeholders, it will also strengthen your nonprofit’s morale and unity.

As you begin to develop your plan, consider an outside consultant to guide your nonprofit through the process. It’s not an overnight project than can be achieved by cutting and pasting another NPO’s content marketing plan. To achieve a unique brand voice and position, you will need a unique plan that reflects your nonprofit’s values and mission.

First steps

Survey your staff, management, and board members for their answers to the following five questions about your nonprofit. The goal is to ascertain its ability to communicate its mission, vision and ethical practices to your team, supporters, donors, and clients:

  • What are our goals?
  • What are our strategies to reach those goals?
  • What are our capabilities and resources?
  • What are the metrics that we use and that we need?
  • What are our milestones?


Refining the answers

The collective answers will reveal understanding, misunderstanding, and gaps in understanding about your organization. They will also identify any goals that need clearer articulation, insufficient resources to execute your plan, and missing data collection points to measure your progress. They will probably pinpoint a need for additional questions and answers to help understand the impact and the theory of change you wish to develop. Simply put, impact states what you hope to achieve and theory of change explains how you’ll achieve it.

What’s in a plan 

Your nonprofit’s written content marketing strategy is the foundation of your communications that drive your donor engagement, fundraising, education, and advocacy goals. Plan components include:

  • Fundamental and measurable goals—what objectives, in which media, timelines
  • Target audiences—donors, supporters, stakeholders
  • Social media platforms—Facebook, Twitter, YouTube
  • Methods of distribution—email, blog, newsletter
  • Relevant content themes—advocacy, fundraising, education
  • Content editorial calendar—when, where and how content distributed
  • Metrics required to measure effectiveness—open/unopened emails, increased donations, site traffic
  • Staff resources required—how many hours
  • Financial resources required—how much money

Each element should be tailored to your nonprofit’s needs, challenges and goals. One size doesn’t fit all in the dress shop; there’s no reason it should in nonprofits. Your content drives fundraising and drives brand awareness; it should also engage and inspire supporters, staff and donors. The best way to get there is to know where you’re going.

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