Helping Nonprofits Communicate

message. solicit. impact.

Practicing What We Preach

Our logo and branding has served us at Nonprofit Media Solutions well in our first two years of business. But as we’re growing to meet your needs, we felt our branding needed to grow too.

Who’s our target audience?

Generally awesome people. Okay, maybe a little bit more specific – nonprofit organizations who struggle with three common factors:

  • too little time
  • too little funding
  • too little staff

We’ve found nonprofit organizations with a budget of $100,000-8 million and a staff under 20 generally benefit from our in-house services. Nonprofits with a larger budget and larger staff benefit from our consulting services and workshops. We benefit from knowing them all and becoming passionate about their cause.  Bonus.

What’s the nonprofit community’s biggest communication need?

When we initially started NMS we identified a large need specifically with grant writing and social media.  While that need exists, it’s usually due to a larger communications need that stems from a breakdown in either messaging or infrastructure. It is so much more then just writing grants and updating statuses, what we do is making sure the message is clear, concise and persuasive – no matter what medium it is coming from. Whether it’s in-house writing or reviewing communication pieces to identify holes and offering our expert knowledge for the team to execute, we find the same simple idea:  Success comes when all your team members – board members, volunteers and staff – learn to work outside of their silos and see where all the parts overlap. All roads lead back to communication!

How effective is our messaging?

We tell our clients: “Your cause is important. Is your community hearing it?” When we stepped back we realized from our website and logo OUR community wasn’t truly understanding what NMS did and did well.  Our original logo incorporated scrabble tiles. We wanted our clients to know we could see how each part worked together, how we could be part of their team and it would be seamless, how we could work together to create something great.

cropped-nonprofit4.jpg

“Streamline your media energy into mission and community” was our tagline. However, this idea perpetuates what we’ve found as the biggest problem: being ‘separate but together’ as a team. Our website read like a ala carte list of services. Messaging is not a separate part of the organization. Our logo and tagline needed to represent what do 98% of the time: communicate!

How can we be better?

When we sit down and listen to each organizations challenges we do a great job of communicating how all messaging pieces work together, how our perspective and skill set will help streamline their communications efforts and the different ways we can provide services on limited funding.  However, our website did not accurately present our personal conversations. That needed to change!

First, we worked with a fabulous graphic designer who helped us create the perfect logo:

logo

Don’t you love it?  We adjusted our tagline to encompass what we actually do: “Helping nonprofits communicate.”

Second, we streamlined our site to focus on what’s most important. Hopefully this makes it easier for those visiting us to see 1) what we’re all about, 2) quickly having access to helpful information and 3) easy and streamlined way to contact us and find us online.  We also made our site responsive to any browser and mobile-friendly, both things we tell our clients to do (that we weren’t doing ourselves!)

Next Steps: Case Studies & Testimonials

Our next step is to start adding case studies and testimonials.  We have a hard time tooting our own horn. But, just like funders won’t grant money without measurable outcomes, individuals won’t donate without quantified program needs… we can’t expect people to hire us without providing proof of OUR outcomes. We send messages like this out to prospective clients but we have yet to compile them and post them on our site:

“One of our clients had their story picked up by the major news network on Tuesday, Huffington Post on Thursday and by Friday it was viral showing up on CNN, Atlanta 11Alive, UK Daily Mall and the like. Because [client] is a small organization and we had only signed the contract with her about 10 days before the news story broke, her communication pieces and strategy were not in place. There are only two full-time staff for her organization so you can imagine the panic that set-in when she was receiving hundreds of emails and messages in a matter of hours. The infrastructure to handle this type of communication was non-existent.
In the first 36 hours we created a press kit, updated her website, created additional email addresses, increased her website bandwidth, fielded press calls, emails and successfully managed her social media (Twitter, Facebook and Instagram) that ballooned from 2,000 followers to nearly 14,000. We managed all her graphics, her messaging, and the crisis communication strategy. We communicated with over 40 TV and radio stations. We created canned PR responses and virtually managed two part-time assistants. She is currently receiving 17.3 million impressions on her analytics. This is a great example of what we do and do well.”
full_logo (3)
There it is, folks! NMS is a nutshell – a new nutshell! We love what we do and are excited to share our vision (and journey) with you.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *