Like any other business, non-profits must remain relevant, maintain resources and attract talent. Too often, non-profits focus on needed services while failing to maintain their economic resources and diversifying their mission. A non-profit can avoid losing donors and significance by mitigating the following three challenges.
Social media and the growth of non-profit news organizations have resulted in greater awareness of social issues among the general public. While an increase in awareness is good for issues and causes, it has led to increased competition among non-profits. Not only have the number of non-profits increased, but potential donors can contribute to grassroots causes with a simple click.
Non-profits survive when they attract consistent donors and receive grants, both public and private. Your non-profit can surpass the competition by providing clear and consistent messaging, focusing on your expertise and experience with the issue, and running effective multi-channel donor campaigns.
Consistent, long-term donors have become more sophisticated in their expectations. They expect to see metrics and data that indicate your non-profit’s effectiveness. If your non-profit has successfully established programs, then it is time to start showing your program’s effectiveness. Establish measurable goals and report your progress. For instance, if your non-profit seeks to provide services for single parents then choose one of your existing programs and set a goal. Inform your donors of the goal, update them on the progress and celebrate when a goal is met. This will create enthusiasm from your donors and a stronger commitment to your cause.
The Bottom Line
A non-profit is a business and you must ensure that you maintain your bottom line. Your non-profit’s effectiveness is dependent on the amount of income you can maintain. This requires your board to align effectiveness with cost. When establishing measurable goals be certain to account for adaptability and shifting resources while staying in the black. A strong bottom line can ensure your non-profit’s relevance by having the flexibility to address new issues and to diversify your mission if current goals have been met.
Non-profit organizations will never cease to be important stakeholders in community actions and socially driven missions. By overcoming financial challenges and maintaining donor support your non-profit can maintain its unique relevance and a solid donor base.