In today’s podcast, Mark Rothman, Matt Harms, Jen Tomo from Walk With Sally, and Stephen Halasnik from Financing Solutions discuss how small nonprofits can position themselves for the future. Well-positioned nonprofits are fully prepared to navigate challenges, generate more revenue and run a successful organization. Without positioning, your nonprofit might become inconsistent with communication and can be mistaken by donors and prospects for other organizations performing the same work you do.
How A Small Nonprofit Positions for the Future
Positioning is at the heart of every successful nonprofit; it helps establish its identity and promote expansion. However, many variables affect a nonprofit’s positioning strategy, including the target population’s needs and competitors’ actions.
There are three important questions to consider when building your nonprofit for sustainable growth: What is the need of your target population? How is your mission different from other competitors? And what makes your nonprofit mission unique? Providing clear answers to these questions will help you develop a nonprofit positioning statement that serves as a roadmap to your nonprofit mission.
Your positioning statement should be all-inclusive and must encompass every aspect of your nonprofit such as marketing, funding, leadership, branding, and more, to be effective.
Read on as we walk you through the meaning of nonprofit positioning and how you will set up your nonprofit for success.
What Is Nonprofit Positioning?
Nonprofit positioning is the practice of building your organization so that its mission will closely align with the target audience. It defines how your service is a different and better alternative to your target population. Plus, understanding your position in your market niche is essential for providing the right services that resonate with your target audience.
A strong position statement is the core of great marketing strategy and fundraising and is the starting point for your nonprofit messaging, branding, and lead generation. It’s important you figure out the gap your nonprofit is poised to fill and develop a better strategy than your competitors within your community.
What Is a Nonprofit Positioning Statement
A nonprofit positioning statement defines the essence of your organization’s existence, in other words, it highlights your nonprofit’s reason for being. It defines the core idea you want to communicate to your community. That’s to say, it tells people about your work, how you do it, why it matters, and what makes it unique from what your competitors offer.
The positioning statement is different from the vision statement. It outlines the reason behind your organization, the problem your nonprofit solves, how your programs impact the world, and what makes your organization eminently qualified over other competitors.
Further, a nonprofit positioning document should have the buy-in of every stakeholder within the organization before it can serve its purpose effectively. And it’s essential your team understands your positioning statement and why it exists. In addition, you should reflect your organization’s positioning statement in your marketing strategy, leadership, and fundraising efforts.
Why Is Positioning Essential for Nonprofits?
There’s no doubt that successful nonprofits are well positioned to perform their functions. Strong positioning creates a huge impact as it helps build a consistent positive message about your nonprofit. In addition, a well-positioned nonprofit generates more engagement, and revenue to finance its program.
Without proper positioning, your organization will risk inconsistent communication that might confuse your community, such as stakeholders, partners, donors, and prospects. Plus, you may also run the risk of being mistaken for another organization.
Strategies for Nonprofit Positioning
A laid-down plan will help you build a nonprofit that can compete and overcome challenges. While you’re positioning your organization, you should factor in all the critical departments within your nonprofit so as to create a comprehensive course of action that will help you systematically perform your functions across the board. For instance, funding, branding, and marketing are important areas you should position your organization to have a successful outcome.
Build a strong cash position
Funding is critical for the successful operation of nonprofits. How you manage your money determines the level of your achievement. Optimizing income streams will help you reach your nonprofit’s mission very quickly. Far too often, many nonprofits have too limited funding sources, which restrict their ability to generate enough cash to fund their community projects. As a result, many noble projects failed to see the light of the day.
However, a strong cash positioning is a perfect solution to nonprofit financing. With this in mind, you should strive to expand your revenue stream by sourcing innovative methods of fundraising.
Experience has shown that nonprofits that properly position themselves in their market niches grow quickly, develop faster, and make huge impacts. Developing an effective marketing strategy will help your nonprofit optimize donations, grow members, deepen engagement and create awareness. Plus, by outlining the activities needed to execute your marketing campaign, you will keep track of your efforts and know where you’re making progress to accelerate and where you need to improve.
What’s more, creating a marketing plan can help position your nonprofit for sustainability. Market positioning entails expanding your market, protecting your current market share, or expanding the market. By focusing on what parts of the market your nonprofit should specialize in, you will know the services you can provide better than your competitors.
Brand building positioning
Branding helps your nonprofit stand out from the pack and develop loyalty and trust from your target audience. Creating a strong nonprofit can help you raise more money and increase your organizational awareness. In other words, branding gets your nonprofit recognition and influences its perception by the public.
Learn More About our Guests
Walk With Sally provides hope through individualized mentoring and community support services to empower children experiencing trauma through a parent, guardian, or sibling’s cancer journey.
Mark Rothman (acting Executive Director), Matt Harms (Development Director), and Jen Tomo (Program Manager).
About Stephen Halasnik
Stephen Halasnik is the host of the popular Nonprofit MBA Podcast. The Nonprofit MBA podcast’s purpose is to help nonprofit leaders and their teams. Stephen is the Co-founder and Managing Partner of Financing Solutions, a leading provider of loans for nonprofits in the form of a Line of Credit. Stephen is a best-selling Amazon author and is considered a leading authority on building great, purpose-driven businesses.
Stephen lives in New Jersey, and his top life mission is to raise his two sons, Michael and Maxwell, to be good men.