Nonprofit branding is an involved process that always works best when done in collaboration.
As you start to develop your own nonprofit’s brand, keep the following tips in mind:
Create a living document with your branding guidelines
Chances are, if you’re in the industry long enough, your nonprofit branding strategy will change over time in order to keep up with your evolving priorities and circumstances. In order to keep up with every aspect of your branding, it’s a good idea to create a document that contains all of your relevant branding information. Make sure to share this document with your entire marketing team (whether internal or working with an agency), as well as board members, leaders, and key stakeholders.
Don’t forget to update it as you make any branding changes going forward, that step is super important! If you redesign your organization’s logo or change your main color scheme, it’s very essential that these changes are reflected in your branding document.
Explore your nonprofit’s target audience
Your nonprofit’s target audience is one of the most critical components of your nonprofit when it comes to crafting or updating your branding strategy. You need to make sure you narrow down your audience to a specific group of people who are most likely to engage with your organization and its services. For example, does your programming cater to youth in the GTA? Middle-aged women across Canada as a whole? Income-challenged families in Ontario? Once you’ve successfully identified your target audience, consider what it is they’re likely to connect with. Even better, make a point to engage them in the process of developing and testing brand messaging and materials.
Maintain a consistent branding strategy across all of your channels
One of the most essential functions of a nonprofit brand, or any brand for that matter, is its ability for people to recognize and connect it back to your organization. For this reason, it’s vital that you maintain consistent branding across every medium and platform that you use. For example, your nonprofit’s website is one of your most important marketing assets. As such, it needs to fall in line with the rest of your marketing materials. If your website, say, has an entirely different color scheme and overall style from that which your audience recognizes from your social media, there may be a mental disconnect for site visitors. Which may cause friction points for support.
Work with a nonprofit branding agency
Understanding the ins and outs of nonprofit branding can be difficult to manage on your own, which is why many organizations look to agencies, such as Universal Events Inc., that specialize in branding and administration. When you work with a nonprofit-specific agency, they work to help you develop or update your organization’s branding guidelines, imagery, and much more. Plus, they also tend to understand the best possible strategies for organizations like yours, and can provide you with expert advice for long-term success, including how to engage effectively with different audiences and stakeholders.
At Universal Events, we’ve worked with a number of nonprofit organizations, from local organizations to those with international reach. We do this to help hone in on what makes them completely unique and communicate that to the broader public.