So you want to grow your not-for-profit organisation and achieve your mission with more ease?
It’s a common goal, and it’s easy to understand why: the bigger your non profit, and the more efficiently you are able to achieve what it is you set out to do, the more positive impact you’ll have on those who need it most.
While growing your non-profit organisation is no easy feat, it is very achievable – provided you know where to start, and what to keep your focus on.
Focus on the Mission
You might think this is an easy one. It is, after all, the entire reason your non profit exists.
But it is easy to get side tracked, especially as it starts to grow, or as you face new challenges.
So, the first of our nonprofit growth strategies is to make sure that your growth always aligns with your mission.
While finding funding for your non profit is important, keeping track of donations and where they come from is essential; this will allow you to analyse the data and ensure there’s no risk of being influenced by single or powerful donors.
Sometimes focusing on the growth can detract from the mission itself; if you’re unsure about an action your NFP is looking to take, simply think about that core mission and whether or not that action keeps your mission at the core. If it doesn’t, then it may be best to take another action that does.
Leverage Your Volunteers
The most valuable asset is your volunteers; leveraging your volunteers is key to growing any small or large non profit.
Word-of-mouth and peer-to-peer marketing is by far one of the most effective ways to market. Think about how many times you’ve bought something, or been to a restaurant on a friend’s recommendation?
Ask them to speak to their friends, family, colleagues; they’ll all have wide networks who value their opinion.
Don’t be afraid to get some of these word-of-mouth recommendations written down too – ask your most engaged members if they’ll be willing to give you a testimonial or quote about their time volunteering with you. You might be able to use these testimonials on your website, in marketing materials, and on social media. Sending them a template or some previous examples if they’re unsure where to start will be well received too.
Leveraging this big value asset is an incredibly effective and efficient way to grow your not-for-profit’s mission with ease.
Leverage What You Already Have Access To
Consider the marketing avenues you already have access to. We’ve already talked about leveraging your volunteers, but there are other ways that are big on impact and low on budget. You likely have social media channels and send out emails – make sure you’re doing this consistently and always creating content that’s informative, entertaining, relatable or offers value to your volunteers, donors and potential donors.
Don’t forget to also connect with local businesses or companies you already partner with and see what they can do for you that doesn’t affect their cash flow – perhaps they can promote you in their own social media, emails or marketing materials?
For nonprofits looking to attract volunteers and find funding, earning trust will be absolutely paramount.
According to a study done by McCrindle, “almost three in five Australian givers (57%) and charity workers (59%) strongly/somewhat agree that Australians place a higher trust in charities/not-for-profits than commercial organisations”.
The key to building trust is personal connections, with the data revealing that “Australian givers and charity workers agree that the best ways to build trust in the charities/not-for-profit sector are transparency (72%, 76%), integrity (64%, 73%), reputation (61%, 71%) and strong outcomes (60%, 70%, Australian givers and charity workers respectively).”
We’ve spoken about transparency previously. To be truly transparent, we recommend that you keep volunteers and donors in the loop about the organisation’s position, invite volunteers to partake in meetings and let them know of any structural or major changes. Your volunteers and your donors are your community – be open and honest about what your goals are, what you need to achieve them, and how they can help.
Let’s be honest – without your donors and your volunteers, your organisation would not exist.
Make sure you are constantly reminding them of this, and how grateful you are. Promote what you are achieving with the help of donors and partners. When communicating with donors and volunteers directly, make sure to remind them that these are THEIR achievements, and use second person (you, your).
Donors and volunteers are motivated by learning about the impact their contribution has made; the more you communicate what’s achieved through their help, the more they will continue to do so.
Automate What You Can
Last on our guide to growing your not-for-profit’s mission with more ease? Automate what you can, minimising the time spent on administration tasks and thereby allowing you to scale your community impact.
Think scheduling platforms for social media posts (we love AgoraPulse, Hootsuite & Buffer – just to name three), Eventbrite for Nonprofits for events, and Volaby volunteer management system.
Volaby is a cloud-based volunteer management and social impact data-capture software that allows you to streamline the onboarding, rostering and management of your volunteers and activities, so that you can scale your community impact, and your non-profit organisation.
Need Help Growing Your Not-For-Profit With More Ease?
We hope we’ve given you some nonprofit growth strategies and ideas you can implement for your organisation.
We know how hard it is balance the priorities of your non-profit organisation and the time dedicate to administration tasks while also trying to grow it.
Our volunteer management platform, Volaby, was created by charity Orange Sky to meet their own management needs when they found themselves working tirelessly just to keep the wheels moving. And they knew they weren’t the only ones.
Volaby is a software platform specialising in onboarding, coordinating, rostering and capturing of social impact data, and is used by organisations of all sizes around the globe. Our platform enables volunteers themselves to sign up and create their own volunteer profile, and even roster themselves for upcoming volunteer activities, making volunteering easier for everyone involved.
Our platform is made by nonprofits, for nonprofits. We’ve made it easy-to-use and intuitive for all users. We invite you to get in touch and trial Volaby for free today, with no obligations.
We look forward to speaking with you soon.