According to the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are over 1.5 million nonprofits registered in the U.S. In 2014, charitable contributions to these nonprofits, by individuals, foundations, bequests, and corporations, reached $358.38 billion.
Thanks to Facebook, YouTube, and other forms of online media, the ability for nonprofits to reach their audiences is greater than ever. At the same time, in today’s crowded media landscape, messages can become lost in the mix.
I think PR is so integral to a nonprofit’s strategy because of the sheer number of nonprofits in the U.S. today. While all causes are important, some receive far more awareness and support than others.b However, all nonprofits deserve to have their messages heard. Smaller nonprofits can’t compete with larger organizations through advertising – their budgets are just not big enough. But a PR strategy that includes media relations, social media, video, and other marketing tactics can not only be more cost effective but have a much greater impact than just a couple ads.
Chris Toscano, Account Executive
The fifth annual Nonprofit Communications Report compiled trends from 1,535 surveyed nonprofits, and found that marketing goals were just as important for nonprofits as their programmatic and fundraising goals. Nonprofit’s top communications goals for 2015 are: community engagement, retaining current donors, and brand awareness.
Public relations, social media, and other online marketing tactics are tools that no nonprofit should go without. Whether it is to generate awareness, promote a new program, or drive attendance to an upcoming event, PR can have wide reaching impacts for nonprofits today.
I have been working in nonprofit PR in some fashion for 15 years and to this day it still amazes me. The good that spreading the word through the media can do for one organization. Getting their message out can help in so many ways– generating funds, securing volunteers, goods and equipment. It is fulfilling to hear about some amazing outcomes and results of one media placement.
Eric Katzman, Senior Account Executive
In a questionnaire from the same report, survey participants were asked to rank their biggest challenges. 38% of participants ranked lack of time to produce quality content as very or extremely challenging. Close behind was lack of budget for direct expenses at 38% and inability to measure effectiveness at 28%.
Unfortunately, for many nonprofits, due to size or workload, communications can end up on the bottom of the to-do list. The benefit of working with an agency means that nonprofits have a full, external team focused on producing content, reaching out to journalists, overseeing social media profiles and measuring analytics, without the immediate stresses of fundraising or membership.
Working in nonprofit PR gives me a sense of satisfaction because it draws attention to the success stories of organizations that deserve recognition. Nonprofits benefit from PR because it helps them position themselves as leaders within their communities. PR also helps nonprofits to emphasize their mission and goals, while educating outsiders about their cause.
Sydney Shatsky, Account Coordinator
Momentum is proud to help national and NY-based nonprofits receive their well-deserved attention and share their causes with the world.