Use Your Non-Profit Brand Strategy To Influence Social Impact

Using your non-profit brand mainly to support your fundraising efforts? A robust brand strategy can take you further. When you develop a broader, more strategic branding approach, your non-profit organization can have an even greater social impact in the world.

Ultimately, influencing social impact requires aligning your values and mission with the perception of the organization. A misalignment between that internal identity and the external image undercuts your reputation and the social impact you desire. Shared values among the organization’s employees, volunteers and other stakeholders create cohesion, engagement and helps concentrate focus.

A robust brand strategy bridges the gap between the organization’s works and its essential character.

A brand strategy defines your integrity, external image, and internal identity. It encapsulates the promises you make, what you stand for, and your organizational personality. Strategy communications include your logo, colour palette and slogans. But those creative elements are a reflection that conveys your brand, not the strategy itself. A solid brand strategy focuses on driving social change with a clear brand position and internal cohesion.

Realigning Non-Profit Gaps with Brand Strategy

Ultimately, non-profits exist to make a social impact. This essential ethical approach is the foundation of the organization’s projects. So, how do the values become misaligned from public perception?

Occasionally, the dissonance between public statements and what is privately justified in negative PR situations opens the gap. More frequently, new leadership, fresh volunteers, and individual project campaigns cause a drift that grows apart over time.

This slow straying away from core values manifests as leadership struggles to focus resulting in more onerous decision-making. Workforce volunteers may find the organization less desirable, and of course, fundraising is more challenging.

Unwittingly, non-profits remain unaware of the subtle changes over time until there is a reason to notice. Examine the brand and the branding strategy of your organization when:

  • Your leadership changes
  • It is time to update the website
  • A negative PR event requires the need to change the message
  • Fundraising dips
  • Volunteer rates drop
  • Someone says, “It’s time for a rebrand.”
  • You rewrite your mission/values statements
  • 3 years have passed since the last branding strategy implementation

A robust brand strategy helps you leverage your non-profit brand for greater social impact and keeps you mission focused. By engaging both internal and external stakeholders as a cohesive branding team, your brand becomes empowered to focus on the good work you do, as well as attracting donors and volunteers. Contact us at Bradbury to learn more about how our Brand ImprintTM process can help your organization develop a game-changing brand strategy that gets you the results you want.

Image: Ross Findon