When it comes to nonprofit PR, there are so many different things to be covered. So rather than try writing a novel, I’ll boil it down to five of the most important aspects of nonprofit PR, taking those I find most useful from this list of 10 in the Worcester Business Journal. (These are listed in no particular order.)
1) Media Ties For nonprofits, having a good connection with the media is absolutely vital, especially with the obstacle of distrust of nonprofit organizations in the marketplace. A good relationship with varied media outlets and pitching good, interesting and news worthy stories to them will garner good coverage to improve the nonprofit’s position in the minds of their publics. Nonprofit successes, fundraisers that have a visual story or a great achievement always make for a good news story, so pitch those events creatively to the local media.
2) Heart Strings This is one of the aspects of nonprofits that can set one apart from the crowd. People respond very positively to emotional appeals. Anyone ever seen the ASPCA commercials? You know what I’m talking about. Showing personal accounts of those who have benefited from the organization will help to show publics why the work has value. This is where the nonprofit can begin to connect more deeply with publics and get them involved, whether it be through donation, volunteering, or other ways of support.
3) Proofread Now, the article only discusses this briefly in relation to press releases, but this is of the utmost importance for all documents put out by a nonprofit. Anything that looks half done, has typos and errors, or appears to be something that anyone could create on their own computer is going to send a message that the group is amateur, doesn’t have any money (and is therefore bad at fundraising and communicating the message) and isn’t worth anyone’s time or money. Who really wants to support an orgnaizatoin that cant splel anthing corectlly? It comes off as not only poorly done, but lazy, and that’s the last thing an organization wants to be seen as when trying to garner support.
4) Multimedia There’s nothing that looks more professional than simple, but well-edited multimedia content. When it comes to an organization’s website, Facebook and other social media outlets, videos and photos should be included as often as possible to show, not just tell, the publics what the organization does. While putting together good multimedia may seem like a daunting task, it doesn’t take more than a decent video camera (a Flip or iPhone would work), a simple editing software (like iMovie or Windows Moviemaker) and a little bit of finesse to create something informative and emotional to reach an organization’s publics.
5) Get Linked In organizations like nonprofits, publics want more than anything to feel a relationship to the organization, and therefore an association with the good the group is doing. By connecting to people through Twitter, Facebook and other forms of social media, an organization can help foster that relationship and improve the group’s retention rate of supporters, donors and volunteers.