The print is a very powerful marketing tool for nonprofits—the investment is relatively low, and the impact is incredibly high.
In this post, we will outline some print marketing tips you can implement into your marketing strategy in order to help grow your nonprofit organization.
Thanking Your Supporters
It is important to continuously let your supporters know that you appreciate their giving and that their money is being used to fund some incredible efforts. The best way to achieve this is through postcards!
Receiving a postcard is an exciting experience because it demonstrates how much you care about the recipient.
A handwritten postcard is a reflection of your appreciation and dedication. There is just something so personal about seeing another’s handwriting, especially in this fast-paced digital age. Because postcards are such a rarity nowadays, receiving one is a joyous experience.
As a nonprofit, it can be difficult to find the time to handwrite “thank you” postcards for your donors, but it is well worth the effort. Donors will feel that their donations are more appreciated if they see evidence of a handwritten note rather than a generic printed message.
Besides simply thanking donors for their contributions, aim to also include a personalized message or question in each note.
For example, if you have a donor who has advised you that they recently adopted a dog, you could ask about the dog in your postcard. This will demonstrate how much appreciation and care you have for each individual donor, which may result in incredible word-of-mouth marketing.
In order to achieve this level of personalization, you’ll find it helpful to keep detailed notes on key distinguishable facts of each donor. You could include this information in a devoted field in your CRM titled “Facts about…”. Aim to fill in this field whenever you converse with the donor, either face-to-face or over the phone.
Another great way of thanking your supporters is by providing them with a free gift. A fantastic free print marketing gift idea is a calendar.
Calendars are great because they are almost always hung in the home (especially if they’re delivered early in the year). On the calendar, you can print photos of your charitable efforts.
Donors will feel a sense of accomplishment whenever they look at the calendar and see the work they are funding. It will also make for a great talking point whenever houseguests ask about the visuals in the calendar!
The best marketing efforts are those that keep providing a value many times over—a calendar is an excellent example of this.
Updating Your Supporters
Besides thanking your supporters, it is important to continuously update them on your incredible charitable efforts. Simply sending an email does not have the same effect as mailing a letter.
As mentioned earlier, receiving letters in the mail in this fast-paced digital age is becoming increasingly uncommon due to the amount of time and effort it takes to send them. Therefore, if you send updates to your donors via mail, you can be confident that they will open it and read it—especially if you write out the address to the recipients by hand.
Sending a brochure in the mail is a very effective method of updating donors.
Brochures are vibrant and colorful, and have very few pages which should save on printing costs. Most brochures consist of only one double-sided page that has been folded multiple times into different sections.
Because brochures have limited real estate, they are a great way of giving your donors bite-size updates. You might consider sending them every month or so.
For the detailed updates, say quarterly or yearly ones, you could send your donors catalogs. Catalogs, unlike brochures, have multiple pages which allows you to include more detailed information.
If you are worried about printing costs, you could print your catalogs and brochures only in black and white. By including high-value written content alongside your visuals, your donors should not mind the lack of color.
For either a brochure or catalog, just make sure the written content answers the questions that your donors would potentially ask:
- What was the impact?
- Who was helped?
- How big was the impact?
- What are the next steps?
Helping Your Supporters
This printing marketing tip is incredibly clever and a little bit cheeky.
Help your supporters during the seasonal holidays by sending them a pack of printed cards for them to fill out and send to family and friends.
On the one hand, you will be helping your donors by providing them with a free gift to help them celebrate the holidays with their loved ones. On the other hand, you will also be investing in outreach efforts for your nonprofit.
On the back of the greeting card, you could write a caption to describe the image on the front of the card. In this caption, you could identify your charity and advertise your incredible impact to entice prospective donors. This would only work well if the image on the front of the card is of high quality and relatable to the seasonal message.
Here is a great example:
Let’s say that your charity is centered around helping the poor in your community.
1. On the front of the card, you can include an impactful photo of a homeless person smiling as they are handed a hot bowl of soup.
2. Inside the card you can print the following message:
Merry Christmas, to bring joy to the world you need to start with only one smile.
3. On the back of the card, you would then include your charity contact details.
You are sure to gain an incredible amount of donors every holiday season with this marketing strategy!
If you are not leveraging print in your marketing efforts, you are missing out on some incredible growth opportunities.
Follow our print marketing guidelines to grow your nonprofit donor base.
Written by Matt Fey, PrintingCenterUSA
Matt writes for PrintingCenterUSA’s blog and manages marketing efforts as well. He has a strong background in marketing and helping businesses connect with their target audience.