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PR For Nonprofits: Why PR is Crucial for Mission-Driven Organizations

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PR helps elevate, define and promote a nonprofit organization, its mission and its leadership through earned placements in the media, recognitions via awards and speaking opportunities and more. A good PR and communications strategy builds credibility for a nonprofit, introduces critical stakeholders to its work, positions it as a leader in its space and allows it to magnify its impact by showcasing how the issues it tackles can be handled on a national and international scale. 

For nonprofits, public relations can often be an afterthought. After all, their focus is on serving their communities and tackling pressing issues above all else. However a thoughtful and strategic PR and communications plan can increase capacity, open doors to legislative change, lead to new sources of funding, build new partnerships and much more – in essence investing in communications allows nonprofits to reach farther and do more. 

Why Is It Crucial for Nonprofits to Have a PR Strategy?

Too many nonprofits are doing incredible work in anonymity. It’s understandable – nonprofits exist to do the work, not to talk about the work. But a good PR and communications strategy for a nonprofit doesn’t take away from an organization’s capacity for service; it expands its ability to serve and enables it to grow. 

Gaining positive media attention, getting in front of its core audiences and solidifying a reputation within its community can launch a nonprofit toward financial success, help it build relationships with local legislators and can help it reach more people in need of its services. 

Without a proactive PR strategy in place, a nonprofit will be defined by others: those it serves, those that hear about it in passing or those that compete with it for funding. Being proactive about reputation building allows an organization to showcase the work it’s doing, own its core issue area and amplify its impact. 

How Is PR for Nonprofits Different?

Because of their deep connection to the communities they serve and their unique approach to service, every nonprofit has a story to tell and a point of view deserving of attention. Nonprofits don’t need to sell a product, rather they need to communicate an idea, a solution or an approach to making the world a better place. 

Nonprofits are at the forefront of the most pressing issues facing our society. From closing education gaps to housing needs to health disparities and beyond, nonprofits have a pulse on the social issues affecting the most vulnerable communities. This means they have unique and valuable insight that deserves to be elevated through PR.  

In this work, it’s critical to elevate both the organization’s programmatic work and its thought leadership: how it tackles an issue, why that issue is deserving of attention and how others can work with them to change their community for the better. These must be treated as the life-saving and society-changing perspectives they are, and that requires a strategic approach to nonprofit public relations. 

Aspects of a Nonprofit’s PR Strategy

PR for nonprofits starts with storytelling. What does the nonprofit do? Why and how does the nonprofit do it? And critically, why is this issue so important today? 

From there that story needs to be shaped, shared and protected. This requires a targeted approach to:

No nonprofit is the same as another. Each has its own unique needs. A good public relations and communications strategy adjusts accordingly and maximizes what the organization has to work with. 

Why Work with An Agency for Nonprofit PR

Agencies, especially those specialized in nonprofit public relations, are able to build capacity for nonprofit teams. By working with outside specialists that understand the media landscape, how to shape a story, how to pitch reporters and how to build a lasting reputation for a nonprofit, mission-driven organizations can expand their reach and get in front of those that need to know about them. 

With the additional hands and decades of experience PR agencies bring, a nonprofit can rise above the noise of the day to day and start leading on the issues that matter on a local and national level. 

PR Elevates Nonprofit

PR may feel like an add-on for a nonprofit where there’s little extra budget to spare, but in reality it can be the tool that takes a nonprofit to the next level. Investing early in a communications strategy sets up an organization for long term success, allows it to define itself before others define it and introduces it to critical audiences to expand its reach, capacity, funding and reputation.  

If you’re considering public relations services for nonprofits and mission-driven organizations, reach out to The TASC Group. 

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