Stretch Your Dollar in the Nonprofit Sector

Stretch Your Dollar in the Nonprofit Sector

Creative ways to get the most out of your funding for your not-for-profit organization.

Written By: Jenny Reolfi

One of the largest recurring challenges leaders in the nonprofit sector face is a limited budget. This delicate dance of balancing donor retention, growth, and serving the public is not for the faint of heart. Below are 4 areas of tips and tricks to get the most out of each donation gifted and each grant awarded to your cause.

Planning and Budgeting

Start by creating an annual budget for static expenses such as rent, utilities, salaries, etc. Then, outline your event, donor and promotional goals for the next year to estimate the cost of each.

Next, compare the cost of monthly donations or income against your static expenses. The remaining amount will give you an idea of the funds you can divide to meet your goals.

If your income doesn’t cover the cost of all projects, rank your objectives by importance.

Grants are in no way a guarantee of funds. Make sure your existing funds cover the most important objectives first. If the main goal matches the requirements of a grant, it never hurts to apply.

In the best-case scenario, the grant funds your main project. Then you have spare funds to dedicate to another project.

Vigorous Vetting

When spending your hard-earned dollars on a vendor, it’s in your best interest to know they will deliver.

  • Check out reviews from a vendor’s past clients online before reaching out for an estimate.
  • Define expectations of the partnership
  • Maintain an open field of communication.

Social Media

The value of social media lies in targeting demographics and expanding your sphere of influence. Targeted marketing gives you the highest chance of return on investment (ROI).

Even without paid promotions, you can generate a ripple effect with engaging content. When your staff or volunteers like or share a post, their friends see it, and if they engage, their friends see it and so on. This organic growth puts your information in front of as many eyes as possible.

Free Trials

If you have a need that requires a specific service, search for a resource that offers a free trial. Trial periods allow you to meet your immediate need AND lets you see what results you can expect. Use the data of the trial’s success to make educated decisions and smart investments.