Build Your Brand: Non-Profit Edition

By : Arina Karkhanis


The Good Assembly is a capacity-building series custom-designed to support our partner Non-Profit Organizations (NPOs). In our second live webinar, VidMob Gives curated a personalized workshop to equip 6 partner nonprofits with creative recommendations and marketing secrets to build their unique brand identities. Let’s take a look at the highlights and key insights from this latest mini-marketing masterclass.

In our last Good Assembly, we demoed how our Intelligent Creative platform can empower nonprofits to build capacity around data-informed digital content. We now shifted to brand strategy for our second webinar — covering everything from mapping customer personas to crafting concrete mission statements. VidMob’s Chief Brand Officer, Stephanie Bohn, teamed up with our Executive Creative Director, Sara Musselman, to deliver the pro-tools and tips for brand longevity. With 30+ years of combined expertise and the enthusiasm to match, Steph and Sara guided our nonprofits on the four pillars of brand success:

Know Who You Serve

Knowing your target audience and pinpointing precisely what they care about are the immediate first steps. It’s not merely about determining your audience’s aspirations relative to your cause but also about anticipating any potential pain points or frustrations. The exercise of mapping customer personas can be distilled to a simple series of questions: Why do they care about your organization? What do you uniquely offer?

Once these questions are answered, the language should follow suit.

Mold your communication style to cater to your audiences’ needs.

This enables you to identify your audience’s “language of trust” and predict what is likely to grab their attention in ad campaigns. And while language delivery is contingent on the specific nonprofit, there are some rules of thumb… “Write like you speak” and “Say less, mean more!” Defaulting to verbose, wordy speech is tempting; yet, nothing is quite as effective as simple, accessible language.

Build Your Brand Foundation

This is your chance to make a statement — in fact, two statements. Your vision statement is a careful selection of 5-25 words that describe the ideal end state your organization is striving for. Your mission statement is the work you’re doing to get there.

Make Noise, Make News

Your nonprofit deserves to be seen. As such, it’s worthwhile to curate and invest in your public and digital image:

  • Hire PR firm or freelancers.
  • Ensure your key stakeholders look good.
  • Produce valuable content.
  • Build a story bank.
  • Tee up spokespeople.
  • Apply for awards.

Humanize Your Brand

Treat your brand like a person, or a model citizen for that matter. Focus on the values that will build trust and further embellish your branding campaigns with personality words and traits. The voice and tone of your brand should be telling compelling stories to connect with your audience. And lastly, the look and feel of your brand should seek to attract, build context and connection.

From Theory to Action

The last segment of the Good Assembly webinar put all the experts tips to practice with a live workshop in conversation with 6 featured nonprofits. The workshop enabled us to offer real-time feedback on recommendations for design elements, user experience and PR campaigns. Whether it was revamping style guides or revisiting product marketing strategies, the workshop offered a comprehensive suite of optimizations to bolster our partners’ brands. The recommendations varied from subtle design nuances of text density to strategic tips on investing in content production and PR efforts. The workshop was a powerful reminder of the seamless interplay of creative elements in effective branding — a meld of data and design, language and craft, and human voice and mission. We’d especially like to thank SOUL RYEDERS, Build Health International, Amplify Girls, Berkshire United Way, No Bully, and Quipu, both for their tireless work and for their willingness to partake in our first-ever branding workshop.

It was a real honor to spend time with non-profit leaders talking about how their world-changing missions can be expressed most effectively. We covered a lot of ground and each organization came away with action plans. Our goal for this Good Assembly segment was to help NPOs build marketing capacity to maximize the reach and resonance of their communications. – Stephanie Bohn, Global Chief Brand Officer, VidMob