Offline Marketing Ideas and Strategies for Nonprofits

Digital marketing has taken over many spheres of business with efficient and cost-effective solutions like social media and email marketing becoming ubiquitous. However, traditional offline marketing is still important.

An Overview of Offline Marketing

Offline marketing is marketing that leverages non-digital traditional advertising and marketing channels. These include, but are not limited to, print, billboards, television, in-person events, and radio. Understanding this, how can nonprofits use offline marketing to reach the right people and achieve their aims?

Invest in Business Cards

Many people forget that business cards remain an essential marketing tool in many spheres. There are a lot of people who expect a business card on meeting you. A business card removes the need for an interested donor to look up your nonprofit because all the information they need will be there.

Do not make the mistake of using cheap and templated business card designs because it is likely your prospects have already seen that design before and thus your business cards will not stand out. Instead, opt for a bespoke solution from a reputable designer or business.

Also, pay close attention to the paper, colors, and printing since these inform the first impression prospects have about you and your nonprofit.

Publish a Book

Because you already run a nonprofit, you likely are knowledgeable in a specialized area that concerns your nonprofit. You also know the problems you are trying to solve, and a book can be a great way of drawing attention to your nonprofit and its affiliated causes.

Writing and publishing a book is now easier than ever. You can get access to freelance editors who will look over your book and then leverage platforms like Kindle and Amazon to self-publish your book. You can also make it a free download on your nonprofit’s website. Just ensure it has appropriate calls to action so people can engage with your nonprofit after reading it.

Lastly, you can use traditional digital marketing platforms like social media and email to send out the book. This marrying of offline and digital marketing can work wonders for your campaign if done right.

Leverage Direct Mail

With businesses turning to digital marketing, many people think direct mail has gone extinct. This could not be further from the truth. Due to how much strategies like email and social media marketing have been used, there is some level of lethargy among many people.

People are now reluctant to open emails unless they know who the sender is. This has seen the effectiveness and open rates of email plummet over the past few years.

On social media, people now just scroll past ads unless they are highly targeted and something they are already interested in. However, many people still open direct mail because the expectation is that only important documents and messages come through the mail.

Direct mail gives nonprofits unprecedented reach, especially among baby boomers who account for about 45% of all charitable giving. There are vastly different forms of direct mail nonprofits can send including regular letters and postcards. Because there are numerous form factors within these main ones, nonprofits would do well to automate the process of sending direct mail.

There are direct mail solutions that save nonprofits a lot of time while remaining eco-conscious. Sending nonprofit mail using these automated services makes the process easy and caters to all the different types of mail a nonprofit sends.

For more information on how your nonprofit can leverage these services, see this guide from Lob. Lob simplifies the process of sending direct mail, giving your nonprofit a lot of flexibility and saving you time and money in the process. They also have automation and developer tools to help nonprofits send direct mail from their data systems and customer relationship management solution.

Send Seasonal Cards

You can stretch the idea of direct mail further by sending seasonal gifts and cards to your supporters and donors. These cards are great tools for donor acknowledgment, donor retention, a chance to tell people about what is going on with the nonprofit, and to show the recipients that you are still around.

Ensure the cards are well-thought-out, well-designed, and personalized to show your donors and supporters you care and that your nonprofit appreciates their support.

Distribute Printed Materials

You might be surprised about how much traction your nonprofit can get by distributing printed materials. Pamphlets and flyers work great, especially if you are headed towards a launch or need more local recognition and awareness.

Printed materials are also cheap to create and distribute. You might have to check with the local authorities to get permission to do so as well as be strategic with where you place and distribute your printed materials.

As with business cards, avoid templates as much as you can, the only exception being not having a large budget for this. There are a lot of guides on creating great flyers, and they are a great place to get started if you are low on design ideas.

As with all other offline marketing materials, do not forget to include important information about your nonprofit and its causes and all the contact information one would need to find you and your nonprofit easily.

Offer Free Workshops

As an expert in your area, there are lots of opportunities to help and inform people while getting a lot of attention for your nonprofit. You could become a guest at a local show, at a morning radio show, or on a TV show. You could offer information and advice related to your causes to bring more attention to them. If you do get an opportunity to write a column in a local paper, take it. Just ensure the information you offer is genuine, accurate, and helpful. Avoid delivering a hard sales pitch because that can turn people off, and you may lose the chance to make a genuine connection with people who could be incredibly helpful to your cause.

Nonprofits should look beyond digital marketing as there are lots of effective offline marketing opportunities available. Many of them revolve around involvement, outreach, and being an advocate for your nonprofit and its causes.