Why branding is important for charities and nonprofits

When you think of branding, charities and nonprofit organisations don’t come to mind. Instead, you instinctively think of the marketing campaigns of large, corporate companies. With their focus on the human and personal, and their limited budgets, branding just isn’t something that’s relevant to charities. Right?

Wrong.

As a charity or nonprofit, you may not have huge budgets to run billboard advertising campaigns. You also likely don’t have an internal marketing department or design team. But branding is still absolutely crucial for your organisation.

Branding is way more than glossy adverts and fancy logos. If you have a public organisation, you already have a brand. It’s your reputation, it’s how you interact with service users, it’s what you say on Twitter. It’s what people think of you and how they describe you to others: who you are as an organisation, and what you do. And that’s something you should be in control of.

So why exactly is branding important for charities and nonprofits, and how can it support your aims as an organisation?

Differentiate your charity and find your audience

There are over 168,000 charities in the UK and Wales alone. People who want to support a charity as a donor or volunteer have a lot of options to choose from. That means it’s really important that people can understand what you stand for and what you do, in order that they can decide if they’d like to support your work. It also means they’ll find it easier to describe what you do to other people, raising awareness and telling your story.

Working on your branding as a charity or nonprofit is a great way to work through this, creating a brand identity which reflects your mission, who you are and what you do. The charity Macmillan Cancer Support, for instance, reported that people’s awareness of their brand increased from 31% to 65% after their rebrand in 2006.

Increased trust and professionalism

By having a set of brand guidelines which you consistently use across all of your channels and communications, your charity or nonprofit will instantly appear to be professional and organised. Potential supporters will feel assured that by working with you they will be supporting an organisation that they can trust, and which is working to make the world a better place.

Increased donations

If people think of you positively, and truly understand who you are as a charity or nonprofit then they’re more likely to support your work. And that means financially too. 

The 2012 report ‘Branding Inside Out’ by CharityComms found that improved branding will improve the number of donations that a charity gets. And Macmillan’s report about their rebranding in 2006 confirms this, with their fundraising income increasing from £97 million in 2006 to £141 million in 2011.

Make a change: charity branding

Take a look at previous charity branding work from Monchü

And if you need support with branding for your own charity or nonprofit organisation, contact us and one of the Monchü team will be in touch.