There are a lot of barriers in the way of nonprofits who want to get into blogging, especially when it comes to technology. At the same time, organizations with a little gumption will see those barriers crumble with a little inside information that for-profit marketers have been employing for years. Here are three myths about nonprofit blogging that don't hold much water:
1. It's Not Important
In the last decade, blogging could be chalked up as little more than a frivolous, self-indulgent fad. As we enter 2014, however, nothing could be further from the truth.
Aside from pursuing your mission and taking care of all your donor management activities, there are few things more important than blogging, especially when it comes to outreach. Traditional advertising and marketing can be very costly for nonprofits, and blogging represents a low-cost alternative that actually yields better results.
HubSpot reports that the more you blog, the more website traffic you will get. That's because you're creating content that people can share via social media and email, opening the door to new visitors who may become donors to your organization. Search engines also love high-quality blog content, giving you more opportunities to appear in search results for the terms and keywords that are relevant to you. Without a blog, your website is little more than an online billboard with a donate button.
2. Not Enough Resources
Available resources can generally broken down into time, money and manpower. Luckily, blogging is, for the most part, free. Once you understand the importance of blogging, committing manpower to a blogging initiative might take higher priority, but it can still be taxing on resources.
A good solution to the time problem is repurposing. It's likely that you already have dozens of blog posts written, you just don't know it yet. Here are a few ideas:
- Email and snail-mail newsletters can easily be repurposed into one or more blog posts.
- Check your email inbox: have you ever answered a question from a volunteer, donor or other supporter? That answer could make for the foundation of a great blog post. Search your inbox for "How do I" - you might be surprised by what you find.
- Has your Executive Director ever spoken or been interviewed in print, radio or TV? Track down that article or clip and transcribe the speech. The transcript could be repurposed into one or more blog posts.
So what about manpower? Remember, it's not just your internal staff that has to contribute blog posts. You can solicit guest blog posts from volunteers, donors, board members and constituents. Ask them to tell a story about your organization, or explain why they give. You don't get what you don't ask for, after all!
3. Nothing to Write About
When it comes time to sit down and write an original blog post, a blank Word document can be very daunting. The fact is, nonprofits have more to write about than any other business or organization. The trick here is not to write about your organization, but about the topics surrounding your mission. For example, if your organization has something to do with Alzeimer's, research what questions people are asking about the illness and answer them! It's a great way to get in front of a potential advocate without a direct solicitation.
If you're ready to get serious about blogging and content marketing, be sure to check out my webinar on content marketing for nonprofits: http://bloomerang.co/resources/webinars