6 Networking Tips for Nonprofits

Running a successful nonprofit requires more than the desire to spread the word about the cause you support. Knowing how to effectively network while creating new connections and maximizing your reach is essential to ensure you are taking advantage of as many opportunities as possible in your niche and industry.

Using a few affordable marketing strategies, promote and spread the message of your nonprofit organization whether you are looking to connect with local residents in your community or if you are interested in creating an international nonprofit organization that is known around the world.

Attend Local Networking Events

One of the best ways to begin networking with your nonprofit is to attend local conferences and networking events designed to bring business owners and entrepreneurs who are interested in the nonprofit sector together.

Attending a local business or nonprofit conference is not only a way to meet others who are experienced in the field, but it is a great opportunity to learn from keynote speakers and workshop sessions that are most relevant to your cause and the type of support you are seeking.

Before attending a local networking event or a conference, there are a few ways to prepare ahead of time, such as:

  • Business Cards: Design a unique, modern, and memorable business card to help you and your nonprofit stand out among the rest of the attendees and speakers you encounter.
  • Plan: Having a plan of action in mind is essential when making new connections and requesting business cards or scheduling future phone calls and meetings. Know what you want to speak about and how you intend to spread the word about your nonprofit before entering a conference or networking event.
  • Research: Research speakers and guests who are attending the conference or networking event you are interested in. When meeting with new partners and prospective investors, discuss relevant topics or their own nonprofits to build a good rapport with potential long-term connections.

Build Relationships

Building relationships at networking events matter, especially if you are interested in conducting a follow-up email, call, or even an in-person meeting.

Rather than simply introducing yourself and swapping business cards with speakers and attendees, take time to get to know those you are speaking with and consider how you may work with one another in the nonprofit realm.

Each time you meet a new individual who is involved in a nonprofit, consider the following questions:

  • Does this person run a nonprofit organization that is relevant to my own?
  • How can I work together with this person to help better my own nonprofit’s success while also providing them with something in return?
  • Is there a way I can collaborate with this individual?
  • Does this individual have additional connections in the nonprofit industry that are likely to be beneficial to my own organization?
  • What is the best way to ensure this person remembers me once we leave this conference or networking event?
  • How can I help this individual with their own nonprofit? What skills or connections do I have that are useful and relevant to their own endeavors?

Use Affordable Marketing Materials

Marketing materials can help spread the word of your nonprofit, especially if you have a local storefront or office space where you meet with prospective clients or donors. Find affordable marketing materials that are best suited for your nonprofit.

We offer nonprofit printing, resulting in reduced pricing for nonprofits, charities, and churches throughout the US and Canada.

Join Nonprofit Support Groups Using Social Media

Use social media to join local networking groups to discover upcoming conferences and events that are most relevant to the needs of your organization. Follow social media groups for instant alerts and event postings to stay in the loop with upcoming gatherings that are most fitting for your nonprofit and the direction you plan to take it.

48% of nonprofits believe social media is very valuable. via. @HubSpot #nonprofit #socialmedia Click To Tweet

Discuss events and network with others using social media to garner a following and support of other local businesses and organizations in your local area.

Develop Your Nonprofit’s Social Media and Online Presence

Develop an online presence for your nonprofit organization using platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and even Pinterest, depending on the audience you want to reach and the cause you support and represent. Create a posting schedule and update consistently to garner new followers and to establish your organization as professional and reputable.

According to HubSpot, the main priorities of social media marketers at nonprofits want to fundraise, recruit volunteers, share news, or generate brand awareness. 

Steven Shattuck, Chief Engagement Officer at Bloomerang, includes additional new data that reveals how nonprofits are using social media for marketing. 

Follow-Up With Your Connections

One of the most important elements of building a successful nonprofit organization involves following up with connections you have made at past events, online, or even conferences that are relevant to your cause. Send follow-up emails or schedule calls with those you have connected with immediately after an event to prevent missing out on potential opportunities.

The sooner you follow up with prospective connections and potential donors, the more likely they are to remember you, prompting them to remain open to working together. Always follow up with connections to solidify your working relationship together as you continue to grow your nonprofit.

Building a nonprofit organization from the ground up is never a simple task, even if you are supporting a cause that is well-known and relevant in today’s society.

With the right affordable marketing strategies and an understanding of how to effectively network with others, you can create the connections and opportunities necessary to keep your nonprofit thriving and successful at all times.

Learn how to design an effective brochure.