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If your firm is a non-profit organization (i.e. 501C3, Charity or Religious Organization), it is very important that you learn how to use the Internet to connect and to compete to attract donors, volunteers, members and participants to your organization.

Recently, I had the opportunity to work with one of the local Housing & Development Organizations here in Atlanta, Quest 35, Inc., on redesigning their website and customizing a Facebook Fan page. The organization was looking to attract more donors through social media and they wanted a blog. Click here to check out the new site and their new custom facebook landing page.

It was a really great project. It made me more aware of the issues facing the homeless community. I also saw a greater need for non profit organizations to spread the word about their cause and to educate donors about their organization.

And what better way to do that, than through having a web presence for your non profit organization.

So how can a website or blog help build awareness for your non profit organization?

5 Benefits of Having a Web Presence for Your Non Profit

There are many ways that your organization can benefit from having a website or blog:

1. Credibility – Having a professional and informative website increases credibility to your organization.

2. Fundraising – There is an increase in the sum of money that exchanges hands on the Internet today. Due to more secure tools for transmitting financial transactions, like Paypal, there are numerous ways for your donors to make donations to your organization without the worries and hassles of the more traditional donation process.

3. Cost Effective – It is more cost effective to put information about your programs and causes on a website’s home page, where it is easily accessible by everyone, than it is to advertise by more traditional means.

4. Raise Awareness – With a web presence, you can make people aware of your organization, encourage them to support you, while increasing your visibility.

5. Connect With Supporters – Your website and social media networks allow your donors the opportunity to interact with other donors and philanthropic experts. The blog and/or social media pages give your visitors the opportunity to engage in meaningful conversations (that may lead them to make a donation and/or other contributions).

Overall, a website permits your visitors to learn more about your organization that they are participating with or are potentially interested in participating with.

Best Practices for Creating a Web Presence for your Non Profit using a Website or Blog and Social Media

  • Use Social Media – like Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Blogging. Some social media networks are more effective than others. According to a Case Study created by the redroostergroup organization called Social Media for Nonprofits: Who’s Doing It & What Works, Twitter was proven to be more effective than Facebook for non profits. The reason was mainly due to that Twitter is easier to keep up to date and therefore more organizations used it on a regular basis. 

    Blogging was also ranked as very effective for connecting with existing audiences.

    Linkedin could be beneficial in helping you find networking contacts, business and corporate donations, and to recruit for help.

  • Create Facebook Page – If you create a Facebook Page for your organization, your visitors can “like” your Page and become a fan of your organization.

    Another great option is to build a custom landing page so that your visitors are directed to a page to find out what you want them to do instead of just landing on your default Wall page. Be sure to give them clear instructions, if you would like for them to do something.

    You can also set up a Cause page (like a fundraiser event or campaign) or a group on Facebook for your organization.

  • Blogging – Like I mentioned earlier, blogs have been proven to be effective for connecting with your existing audiences. Your blog needs to have good content and information that will make people take action. Tell them as much as you can about your organization so that they truly understand your story and why they should care about your cause as well. Do your very best to keep your supporters up to date about what is going on in your organization with news and events updates. And it is also a good ideal to have email subscriptions on your blog so that you capture your visitors’ contact information. They can opt-in to stay in touch with your organization.
  • Video Sharing – Create a video for your organization and share it on Youtube and on your website or blog. This will increase traffic to your website which ultimately builds more awareness for your organization.

Your organization has the potential to reach higher heights and make a difference in the lives of many people and communities. You just need to figure out where you are with building awareness for your non profit and create a plan to take your organization to the next level.

And when you do, you’re going to see your organization do some amazing things!

So how about you? What things have you done to build awareness for your non profit. Let us know in the comments what you’ve found that works.

Contact WebDesignsbyMichelle.com for help with building awareness for your nonprofit organization. We specialize in branding, social media, web design and blog design.

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Entrepreneurs Can Change The World

Click Here or the Picture above to Watch the Video

Over the past few years, I’ve spent a bit of time reflecting on my business and how I can become a better entrepreneur. As a result, I plan to periodically post something here on my blog on the subject of entrepreneurship.

Almost everyone I encounter lately, is an entrepreneur or have a desire to be an entrepreneur. I have heard it said that home ownership is the “American Dream”. Well I now believe that owning a business is the “new” American Dream.

All of us have not been called to be entrepreneurs, but for some of us, it is our calling. It is our passion. And for some, it is your purpose in life.

How many of you reading my blog today want to start your own small business, a corporation, or even a 5013C?

Many of you have already done just that. Some of us have the desire to build something that we can call our own. Just remember, you are not in it alone.

There is a community of people here (and is steadily growing) that share  your same interest, and I am always here and available to provide you support as well.

One of the keys to a successful business is exposure. So a blog or website, and social media outlets (like Facebook or Twitter) are a good place to start.

Another one of my objectives over the next several weeks is to help you stay motivated. Perseverance is the key to success during the start-up phase of a new business. So never give up on your dreams!

Finally, if you are like me, you have so many ideas that you want to implement that there are times that you don’t know where to start.

Well let me share a personal tip with you that has helped me tremendously in my business, and even in my personal life as well.

Take the time to write down your thoughts and ideas in a journal or any place that you can keep your mental notes. Then turn those notes into the appropriate deliverables.

Let me give you a practical example. After writing down your your thoughts and ideas, you could then turn them into goals. After that, you would convert those goals into a business plan or marketing plan. Or for some that have a book in your spirit, you would be turning your mental notes into an outline for your book or start working on the book proposal. Whatever you do, just keep writing and documenting your thoughts!

Give it a try for 3 weeks and see what happens. Leave me a comment and let me know how this works for you.

In the meantime, if you haven’t done so already, be sure to check out the video that I found a while back on YouTube and use it as motivation to get started. You can play the video at the beginning of this article, or click here. Enjoy!

To Your Entrepreneurial Success,
Michelle

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