Top 10 Reasons Nonprofits Should Blog

Blogging raises an organization’s profile, is another communication channel, and it’s just expected nowadays

I’m a big fan of nonprofit blogs. A nonprofit with an active blog is a nonprofit that is telling their story and providing informational resources to the community. Here are my top 10 (and I had to pare it down to 10) reasons I think nonprofits should embrace blogging.

  1. Blogs increase your presence on search engines. Without getting too much into specific Google updates, just understand that the more content your website has (and your blog needs to be a part of your main website), and the more recent and regularly updated that content is, the more you will be seen in searches.
  2. Your blog isn’t Facebook. Facebook is a kind of mini-blog, and an important piece to your communication strategy, but Facebook isn’t where your thoughtful content is. Your content, outside of your blog, is mixed in with ads for Cialis and dating sites, short-lived, and not easily found after a few days. Your blog is where you set the tone and mood, talk as long as you need to, and have a donate button and/or call to action.
  3. Blogs are another forum where you can engage your stakeholders. Blogs posts generally allow comments, and comments are connections with potential benefactors. Good blog posts can go far, be referenced and even syndicated. Write good content and then allow use under a Commons license (is that a way of sneaking in #11?)
  4. You can talk to your audience in wider terms of interest. AARP has mastered this concept. Their audience of mature adults have many interests and AARP has provided resources to match. Think of it this way. If your audience is an older crowd, and you provide heart-healthy recipes as a part of your on-line resources, then you have the opportunity to show up in search results for recipes and gain site hits and possible donors who weren’t looking for you, but found themselves on your site because of the resources you provided your stakeholders.
  5. Blogs help establish you as a thought leader. From the close-up and personal faces of the people (or animals) you help, to the broader essays informing and educating your stakeholders, a history of published thought and action lifts your image and establishes you and your organization as leaders.
  6. Blogs are easy to incorporate into sites built with WordPress or similar Content Management Systems. If your site isn’t dynamic and quickly adaptable to reflect the current activities of your organization, then you need to change your website.
  7. Blog posts are excellent feed for social media and email newsletters. Your strategy should always be to drive traffic to your website, and to maintain a website that pulls people in to your sphere of influence. Blog posts can be tweeted, Facebooked, and referenced in emails (snippets, not the entire story), driving traffic and potential advocates to you.
  8. Grant makers and funders love blogs. A history of blog posts show your efforts to broaden your base and educate the community. It also shows a grasp of how things are done in today’s fast-paced digital world.
  9. A wealth of information to be re-purposed and adapted. The number 2 search engine is, believe it or not, YouTube. We don’t know what the digital world will look like next year. Your posts can be updated, referred to, put into video, and otherwise be used as adaptable information for new uses.
  10. It’s expected. Different demographics are on different channels, and each have expectations. Young, savvy users are impulse buyers, in the sense that they quickly scan many sources of information and donate time and money impulsively. If you have roadblocks to their actions, they won’t follow through. Your blog can be a place that informs them with graphic content and allows them to engage quickly and from mobile devices.
In 2012 the majority of Facebook views were, for the first time, on mobile devices. Tablets and alternatives to desktops are gaining view-shares quickly. Having a website built on  a platform like WordPress allows an organization to respond quickly and cheaply to change, and they are built for blogging.