Focus your blog on what matters

Writing a blog for your nonprofit’s website can be a great way to promote your cause. So use it strategically.

Sadly, many nonprofits waste that opportunity. They could be using a blog to raise awareness about pressing community needs, the important work they do, and the difference they make in the lives of the people they serve, and to engage supporters and partners for their cause.

Instead, they talk to and about themselves. They pander to their board, donors and staff with overblown praise. They invoke the season of the year as a stock metaphor for a pedestrian discussion about an internal process at their organization. They cite a childhood memory or personal experience to make a superficial point about their work or impact.

In short, nonprofits use blogs to ramble on about trivialities, instead of investing the time it takes to give their readers a clear, concise, compelling explanation of complicated social problems and efforts to fix them.

What you write in your blog should be strategic. It should advance your cause by helping people understand the need you address, the work you do and your impact, and showing them how they can get involved and make a difference.

Do not run a blog simply for the sake of running a blog because your peers publish blogs, and do not use your blog to simply comment on topics no one outside your board and staff cares about.

If you are going to publish a blog, be smart. Help your supporters, constituents and other partners better understand big problems your community faces, how your work helps ease or fix those problems, why they should care, and how they can help.

Each blog entry does not need to be long or solve the problems of the universe. What you can do in each article is chip away at the massive lack of knowledge and concern about issues your community should care about.

If you feel the need to publish a blog, invest the time and thought to make it matter, and to advance the important work you do to make your community a better place to live and work.

Want professional help?

Philanthropy North Carolina is a consulting practice that provides writing and strategic communications support for nonprofits, foundations, colleges and universities, and others working for social good.

To find out more about hiring Philanthropy North Carolina to work with your organization to improve your communications, contact Todd Cohen at 919.272.2051 or toddcohen49@gmail.com.

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