Current nonprofit sector research and recommendations for effective day-to-day practice from ASU faculty, staff, students, and the nonprofit and philanthropic community.
Crawford & O'Brien
It’s easy to spend time making flyers and posters to advertise your organization. Word of mouth is one of the greatest ways to get people talking about it. But have you considered doing another great deed to getting your business out there? People take notice in organizations that continue to offer their services to help out those in need.
With Dentistry from the Heart (DTFH), for example, dentists open up their practices to those who cannot afford proper health care all over North America. DFTH provides people in low-income communities with free dental care. Dr. Mario Pary of Smile Dental Center in Shreveport Louisiana participates in this event every year. Not only is this great a way to give back his community, but it shows people that he cares.
Doing nonprofit services to the community attracts audience through the press. If people are seeing that you’re doing good things, they’ll write about you. If they aren’t writing about you, then you should write about you. What? Tell people about what you have done. People want to hear that you have been doing good things to help your community. They don’t know it yet, but that’s what they want to here. If someone were comparing dentists, for example, they would most likely choose Dr. Pary over someone that doesn’t offer community service. Why? Because that’s what people like to hear. It’s good to know that a dentist is using his services to help those in in need. It shows that he cares about people, that he has great values, and that when he works with your teeth, you're going to be treated with care.
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Besides marketing, community service is beneficial to people. Isn’t it the point of nonprofit organizations to be helpful to the community? It can be very humbling to do something for someone other than yourself.
Here are some great ideas your organization can do:
Donate Blood. One pint of blood can help up to three people. Imagine bringing just five of your organization’s members. That’s 15 people you’ve helped. Check the American Red Crosswebsite to find where a local blood drive is happening.
Play with puppies! Who doesn’t love playing with those cute little animals? Cat people. Well, if your group is full of animal lovers check out your nearby pound or at any of the Arizona Humane Society centers. They are constantly looking for people to help walk the dogs, play with the cats, feed the baby animals or work front desks. Take a day out of the month to spend time with some animals.
Clean some shelves. Libraries are always looking for people to put the loads of books back onto their shelves. Brush your group up on the Dewey decimal system, and get everyone to the local library.
Adopt-a-street.Have you ever seen those signs that say “This Street has been adopted by ---.” Well, those are organizations or groups of people that volunteer their time to keep that area clean. It is a great way to get your organization hear about when they see that you are helping keep the street in good condition.
There are plenty of great ideas out there. A great place at ASU is Changemaker Central. They have events going on every month. So go get your organization involved. Get your name known by helping out in the community.
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Read Johann Beishline's, "Four ways to improve your nonprofit marketing efforts"