Nonprofit branding that does its job

Helpful thoughts from the GuideStar Blog — 3 Things Nonprofit Branding is NOT:


  1. Just a Pretty Face. It’s not about design and logo. It’s about what your donors experience with you. The way you look is at the bottom of the list in importance to the experience. At the top: What you make it possible for donors to do.
  2. A One-Time Shot. Branding is what happens every time you touch your donors in any way.
  3. Only For Big Budgets. No matter how small and poverty-stricken your organization, you can have a great brand. And you have a brand (great or not) no matter how little thought, time, or money you put on it.

If you want a brand that boosts revenue and cultivates connected, involved donors, you’ll pay a lot of attention to who your donors are, what they care about and want, and what your organization does that connects with them.

If your brand is a system for proclaiming how wonderful you are, you don’t have a fundraising brand. You have a look-at-me brand — and that barely works in fundraising.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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