Nonprofit organizations sometimes refer to all the content that goes into promoting their cause a “toolkit.” This toolkit will include a variety of artwork, captions, hashtags, videos, logos, and differing imagery based on audience (some targeting people in a wheelchair, some targeting pregnant women, etc.) Often times, an agency or freelance writer will be working on creating the content for this toolkit. If you’re ever in the position to write content for a toolkit, these tips may help you navigate that process. Or perhaps you’re a nonprofit organization looking for a writer to help with your toolkit, in that case, these tips may also be relevant and informative too!
1) Introduce The Nonprofit
No matter how obvious the name of the nonprofit (Medicaid, Breast Cancer Awareness, etc.), introduce the nonprofit’s purpose and goal. Often times, writers jump ahead, assuming you’re well acquainted or can deduce the nonprofit’s mission by its title or tagline. It’s important to establish a context for the nonprofit and laying out what it does or aims to do to acquaint potential donors or interested participants to its cause.
2) Generate Interest with Testimonials and Storytelling
Don’t assume the cause itself is enough to convince someone to donate or contribute to your non-profit. Often times both the nonprofit and the writer explain the cause and think that already tells a story. What’s even more powerful than laying out the cause, is showing the effect. Find people who were saved or uplifted or effected by your nonprofit and ask them to share their story in interview form or if they’re camera-shy, perhaps a voice recording while you display alternative visuals. Or perhaps, they’d rather write it out and the freelance writer could edit it. Testimonials like this show the cause in action and tend to be poignant and powerful. Also, they often legitimize and liven up the facts and claims with humanity and specifics.
3) Undergo Training For Writing For Blind, Deaf, and Intellectually and Physically Disabled
Often for toolkits, you’re creating content for communities that will be reading subtitles on videos, need concrete wording over abstract, and benefit from visual arrows, large icons, and step-by-step conceptualizing. It’s important to acquaint yourself with the organization’s standards, the community’s needs, and the national rules for making content for the dead, blind, and intellectually disabled communities. Often times, your organization may have you undergo training with classes or send you style documents, but inquire for this orientation and adhere to national protocol before you dive in. Non-profits have more pressure than other companies and brands to adhere to these standards and be inclusive to all communities. Sometimes, those at the organization will assume you as a writer know the protocol and not bring it up, so it’s important to be well-versed and ask them their rules.
4) Who’s Your Audience?
Sometimes, a nonprofit easily segments their audience based on role. For instance, Special Olympics offers opportunities to volunteer, coach, and compete as an athlete. Be sure to get all the segments straight instead of assuming you’re only talking to Special Olympics athletes. Likewise, The Light the Night Leukemia. and Lymphoma Society, divides their donors into “Survivor,” “Supporter,” or “I walk in remembrance” Your content will be speaking to those who are coming from a place of loss and those from a place of endurance so tone-wise, it cannot be all sunshine and roses, it has to acknowledge the shadows. Just as you train yourself in communicating clearly to communities, also adjust your tone to reach all segments and variations in your audience.
5) Consistent Taglines and Message
To drive home what the nonprofit does and why, it’s important to make all social media posts consistent with emails and brochures. Make up your own style guide so that all material contains logo, a particular hashtag, a tagline, and manner of speaking. If there’s a particular event your nonprofit’s emphasizing, do not talk about it in 8 different ways on each type of collateral, but be sure to repeat some of the core messages across the board so your tweets, email marketing copy, and flyers convey the same clear mission statement and goal.
We hope these were helpful tips both for writers working on toolkits and nonprofit organizations themselves. Need a writer to create content for your nonprofit’s toolkit? Check out the conscientious and ultra competent writers of Writer Access!
Interested in examples in comprehensive tool kits? Check these out!
Are you looking for a writer to help create awesome collateral for your non-profit? You’ll find them right here at WriterAccess!
Samantha S writes direct, dynamic, digestible copy for any purpose and any medium. To inform, persuade, or entertain. Her writing catches and holds people’s attention because it’s accessible and easily absorbed. As both a detail-oriented and big picture thinker, she’s precise with technical aspects and insightful with overarching themes. She can shift from sparkling and conversational to no-nonsense and informative.