In today’s commercialized world, branding – how others perceive your organization – is no longer reserved for businesses alone. It is vital that you brand your nonprofit as you would a business. Here are two good reasons why:
Branding your nonprofit organization means developing a clear vision, mission statement, and strategy that accurately presents your work to yourself and to others. Having a clear direction to guide your enterprise adds professionalism to everything you do. This in turn gives you pride in your organization, which is a vital ingredient to your success and growth.
A professional organization is a must for both the people you are trying to service and for donors. A proficient enterprise is able to help your clients in a way that makes them feel good about using your services. And of course, donors will open their wallets quicker and wider when they see a well-run, professional operation.
So, creating a strong brand improves both the internal running of your organization, as well as the services you provide to others. And on top of that, you will raise more money. It’s really a no-brainer!
Now that you are convinced that you really do need to brand your nonprofit, let’s take a look at how you can do this in the best way possible:
You might think that to create a brand you just need a nice looking logo and letterhead, but that is really Step 2. Step 1 in building your brand is figuring out your core concept.
Why does your organization exist?
What are you hoping to achieve?
And what makes you unique among all the other nonprofits out there?
In short, you need to determine your USP, your Unique Selling Point. What is special about your organization that cannot be taken away from you?
Once you have determined why you exist, you can use this information to create collateral in line with your vision. This is what we call “graphic branding.” You can bootstrap and do it yourself on one of the many free or low-cost online tools out there. Or you can hire a designer to do it for you and guide him/her using your core internal brand vision. Everything you create – both online and offline – needs to be in harmony with that vision and look.
Now sit down and determine what it is about your organization that makes it special. Then use that as a guide for all your graphic branding. Wishing your organization much success in the future!
Estie Rand is an internationally acclaimed lecturer and business consultant specializing in helping small business owners and nonprofits bring in more money with less headache. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org for all your business and nonprofit related questions in areas of marketing, profitability, growth strategies and more.