While everyone around us is busy running around to turn their dreams and ambitions into a reality; some of the kind-hearted ones, slow down to look around. They can feel the pain of others and want to help them out. Moreover, they inspire others to do the same. A majority of these people are working for NGOs around the world. We salute all the NGOs that are making an effort for the betterment of our planet and its inhabitants.
You as an NGO are ready to do anything for the cause you are working for, but one challenge is always there, i.e. insufficient funds. You may also want more volunteers and supporters to stand by you. So, what is the right way to reach out to the people?
Start by defining your target audience. Narrow it down to people who have the capacity and the will to donate or work for a cause. For instance, an affluent cancer survivor, a parent who lost a child to a disease or a pet owner who understands animals will be more willing to support a cause that they care about. You can also tie-up with corporates who are willing to involve in CSR activities.
Marketing for NGOs in not driven by profit, but it still needs more effort than marketing for any business. Let’s see what we can learn from other NGOs:
First and foremost, you need to place an easily visible donate button on your website. Words are powerful and you can use them to make a lasting impact. You can also include testimonials of volunteers telling how fulfilling it is to help others without expecting anything in return. This would also inspire others to join your organization. You can make your website interactive by letting the visitors give a treat to a sad puppy, water a plant or drag and drop a meal to a child’s plate….show them how their simple actions can make the puppy wag & jump in joy, turn a dying plant into a healthy and green one and bring a smile on a kid’s face. You can also add before and after photos to let the people see what changes you are bringing. Creating an urgency can be really crucial for an NGO, see how you can do it:
NGOs deal with a lot of intangible things like women empowerment, hunger, education, health etc. Videos can easily convey your feeling on such issues. As an NGO, generating empathy is important for you, so live action videos can really help.
Only such videos can bring audience attention to the injured dogs on streets, shivering with pain and fear, longing to be loved….and still, trusting a stranger. You can also use videos to tell people what your team members are doing and how lovingly they do it! Notice an annotation on the bottom-left of the video? Always have such call to action in your videos. When you feature your volunteers as heroes, it motivated other people to join you.
Sometimes, people get so accustomed to the evils in the society that they do not realize that something needs to be done to stop it! A powerful video can remind them how some practices are harming our society. Explainer videos can be used to tell your audience about what your aim is, why it matters and how can people help. For instance this video from charity water. Animated videos are a good choice when you want to explain your point with ease.
You can include true stories in your videos because they are so genuine and heart-wrenching! Watch this story of an extremely talented Afghan refugee who dreams of becoming a famous artist one day. We came across another beautiful story of a courageous little girl who has high spirits and dreams even though she is struggling with a life-threatening disease. Such videos make the audience want to help.
Project 511 is an initiative to improve the educational standards for the lesser fortunate students in the Hyderabad, RangaReddy, and Medak districts of Telangana, India. Take a look at their video that instantly transports you to the innocent and hopeful world of children. But very soon, we get to see how the dreams are thrashed due to inefficient education system and how Project 511 is trying to resolve the situation. The success of any video lies in how efficiently a viewer can relate with the subject that is depicted. If you live in this part of the world, you are bound to have come across stories of such lesser privileged students on a regular basis. This triggers an immediate alarm and as you move through the video, you realize that your little attention is all that is needed
to shape a better tomorrow!
Youtube is a great platform to upload and share videos but you just can’t miss out on other social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram etc. Consistently post updates on social media but make sure you maintain the quality of the content, do not spam the news feed or people will quickly unfollow you. Let the people see what’s going on in the world, far from their comfortable homes and offices. Spread awareness and tell your fans and followers about the impact your efforts are creating.
The September campaign by Charity Water was brilliant and the video they created was nothing short of awesome. An innovative idea can change lives for thousands of people. The Red Ramp Project gave a great experience to the differently abled people and we are still wondering how come no one else thought about this before?
Similarly, Skills Not Scars job portal by Make Love Not Scars is another amazing project. Watch this video for more.
The Puppy Love Campaign was a result of another out of the box idea! Here you go:
It makes a difference to have a famous personality speak for you. When a celebrity gets associated with you, more people get inspired and want to join you. When he/she makes an appeal, people pay attention.
Actors Gael García Bernal, Hamish Daud, Aidan Gallagher, and Adrian Grenier joined the #WildforLife campaign! Similarly, John Cena helped Make-A-Wish by granting a special wish for a little fan who was suffering from Leukemia.
Mobile apps are a great way to connect with the interested parties. Make it super-easy for them to donate. Also, give them the ability to track where their money is being used. MY DOG ID app can find a dog-twin for you after scanning your face. It helps you adopt dogs, make you notice the dogs on streets and also provides some fun party games.
Your NGO can also organize fundraising events like marathons, concerts or exhibitions. You can also spread awareness through street plays, Christmas parties with special kids or puppy-play & adoption drives.
Augmented Reality (AR)
AR can help the people in your city locate your NGO. You can also use print ads to pass on strong messages to the public.
Virtual Reality (VR)
An immersive experience can take your audience to another world. Use VR to show them how it feels to live in a filthy place, survive with deformities or drink dirty water. VR can be used to show the donors how a child staying at an orphanage is attending classes, running around in the playground etc. all because they sponsored his/her education! Show them how it feels to be a Syrian Refugees in Iraq or what it is like to be a victim of a casualty incident.
We understand you may/may not be able to implement all that we have suggested here. If your budget is low, try low-cost videos. If you do not have a marketing budget at all, you can always use social media to reach out to people. Apart from the images, GIFs and other posts, you can also share live videos! You may need to send emails or make personal visits too. If you are still uncertain of the outcomes, you can try to implement the above mentioned techniques once and figure out how much it helped you. In the end, we just want to thank you for trying so hard to make this world a better place for all of us. Keep up the good work..