Non-profit organizations face unique challenges when it comes to marketing. Non-profits have different types of products and services, timeframes for projects, goals, people, and funding (or lack thereof) than most other traditional businesses. Because of the higher pay, most professional marketers (read: marketing majors) tend to gravitate towards the private, agency, or consultancy sectors.

This leaves those who aren’t formally trained in marketing to assume the marketing efforts and positions of many non-profit organizations. However, this presents a unique opportunity in that they typically end up with people who care more about the cause than the money. Many entrepreneurial types, such as myself, find ourselves in social organizations because we often find ourselves stifled within the bureaucratic structure and slow action of the traditional, corporate atmosphere. Because of the limitations on the social sector, these entrepreneurs often come up with creative and innovative solutions that traditional marketers could learn from, such as:

  1. How to use social media effectively
  2. How to build a personal voice in marketing
  3. How to react quickly to a changing marketplace
  4. How to identify and reach specific target markets
  5. How to market through blogs
  6. How to make use of a collaborative environment
  7. How to do grassroots marketing effectively
  8. How to build sustainable partnerships with (public/private and public/public)
  9. How to engage in guerilla marketing
  10. How to measure results