Whether you work or volunteer for a nonprofit or there’s s specific event you want people to know about, you need to get the word out. Fortunately, there are a number of ways to do that without spending big bucks on advertising. Here are some ideas to help you spread the word on a shoestring.
To give your recognition or event additional credibility and a great news hook, have a special day or recognition declared. This can be as simple as contacting members of your local municipal government and asking them to declare, for example, your event’s date a special day of recognition. If you’re trying to draw attention to a cause, ask how they could recognize the organization at a municipal meeting.
Contact local newspapers, magazines, radio and television stations, blogs, and other media outlets that cover your community. Get them details about the event a two to three weeks in advance or by their editorial deadline and preferences for advance coverage. Don’t be afraid to follow up to be sure the information was received and ask if they can send someone out to cover the event. Otherwise, you can provide a post-event recap for their consideration. Tip: You may boost your coverage potential if you include a few good photographs with captions.
In addition to getting media outlets information for potential coverage, consider writing a letter to the editor of your local newspaper to alert the community about the upcoming event or your favorite cause and why it is important.
If your organization doesn’t already have a website, you can build one using a free website builder like Wix or Weebly. Or create your hub on a social media platform to have your information all in one place. Include the website address or social media URL in all of your promotional materials so people know where to turn for more information.
Social media connects billions of people worldwide. When you create shareable content, you invite others to do the work for you in getting the word out. Use a free platform like Canva to create attractive quote or information cards, graphic or photo posts, or other shareable content. Use your phone to capture a short video explaining something interesting about the event or organization. Then, share across your social media platforms and invite others to do the same. Be sure to let your organization’s employees, volunteers, donors, and friends know so they can help spread the word, too.
There’s greater reach with numbers. Approach other nonprofits or local businesses about teaming up for cross-promotion. You can also barter things like a free booth at an event for a certain amount of promotion, such as in-store signage, social media posts, and a special shout-out in their next email newsletter.
These tactics can help you get the word out about the causes and events you care about, without spending a lot of money. Be sure to brainstorm with your team to come up with other promotional opportunities in your community.