Learn what programs and tools offer free or discounted services for nonprofit organizations.
It’s a myth that every nonprofit works on a shoestring budget. That being said, depending on your size and source of funding, there may not always be a big budget to throw around on marketing initiatives.
As a result, it’s up to you to find the marketing tools that deliver the most value for the best price. A task that may feel a little daunting when there are thousands of digital tools to choose from.
To help you avoid the headaches of comparison shopping, we’ve compiled the ultimate list of marketing tools that provide nonprofit discounts, deals, and perks.
From the totally free to the prorated service fees, here are the best marketing and communication tools for nonprofits.
Canva is an excellent tool for creating fun and engaging digital designs with little to no design experience. Canva is free to use, however, their premium feature unlocks a host of free images and design tools that you otherwise have to pay to access. The Canva for nonprofits program gives you premium access free of charge (a $9.95/month value). As long as you are a licensed 501(c)(3) organization, you can access this feature with your official documentation!
Visuals can help communicate emotions and drive donations towards your cause. However, high-quality photographs can be expensive to license. The website Unsplash gives you access to thousands of high-quality stock photos completely free of charge! Some other favorite license-free photo sites include Pexels and Flikr Creative Commons.
Nothing elevates an annual report to donors quite like a clean, visually appealing infographic. Once again, these deliverables are something that might run you a few hundred dollars from a designer. However, the tool Piktochart uses a simple drag-and-drop designer to help you create professional-looking graphics. A free, basic account is available. But as a special deal for nonprofits, plans with full access to all their graphics and features are available for only $39.99/year!
Video production is not only costly, but it requires a great deal of expertise. However, if you want to spice up your website or social media pages with smaller scale animated videos, Animaker makes it possible for anyone to produce high-quality material. With their easy to use drag and drop system and a variety of free templates, you can create studio-quality animations right from your own computer. If you want to remove the watermark from the free videos, you can upgrade to their affordable paid plans starting at just $19/month.
Great visuals are easy to edit on Pikwizard. There are hundreds of thousands of free, high-quality images that you can take and edit on their graphic design tool, Design Wizard. The stock image selection of people and faces is also great for any annual report! You can choose from thousands of free photos and videos with no attribution required.
Venngage is an online design tool perfect for creating infographics, annual reports, social media posts, and more. In the editor, you can access a library of icons, stock photos, customizable charts, and other design features. Venngage is free to get started, but offers Premium and Business plans to access more features. Both plans are offered at half the cost with Venngage for Nonprofits. Just provide proof that you are a licensed 501(c)(3) organization and you can get started in minutes.
We strive to make all of our plans affordable for organizations of all sizes. However, as a special perk to all 501(c)(3) nonprofits, we offer a 15% discount on all monthly plans! From donor communications to internal staff and volunteer updates. No matter how you choose to use the service you’re covered under our discount!
Why might a nonprofit want to reach their supporters through SMS? For starters, to send messages that have a higher chance of getting read. 82% of text messages are read within 5 minutes, but consumers only open 1 in 4 emails they receive.
Investing in your donor experience through texting can help you tell better stories, create stronger asks and appeals, and reach more of your audience in need.
Free Conference Call is just that—a free, online, multiple-user access “phone” service. With their free service, you can host video calls with up to 1,000 participants (ideal for hosting webinars)!
When it comes to email marketing tools, the Mailchimp reputation proceeds itself. For nonprofits of all sizes, there are a variety of cost-saving opportunities within their services. First off, if you have less than 2,000 email subscribers, you can use Mailchimp’s most basic plan for free. This makes a great solution for small nonprofits or groups that are new and looking to grow their list. From there, Mailchimp offers a 15% discount to verified nonprofits. As a bonus, you can integrate your email marketing and SMS efforts seamlessly through our native Mailchimp integration!
Another top-of-the-line email marketing system is AWeber. Their services range from traditional email marketing to RSS, sign-up forms, and web analytics tools. For nonprofits, they offer pricing as low as $19/month as well as a special offer of 3 free months of service. Once upgraded to a paid plan, nonprofits are given a 25% discount. And similar to Mailchimp, AWeber also integrates with SimpleTexting through Zapier!
Slack is a cloud-based chat tool that keeps workplaces, teams, and conversations organized in one central location. It’s a great way to keep your team connected without clogging inboxes with threads of emails. The Slack for Nonprofit program has some impressive perks for organizations of all sizes.
The program offers free or discounted plan upgrades to eligible organizations including:
12. Google Ad Grants
Every second, there are 2.3 million searches on Google! Each search generates millions of results. How do you ensure your page arrives a little higher than the rest? That’s where Google Ads come in. Organizations can pay Google to display their website as featured content. So when someone in your area searches a keyword you want to target, “best local nonprofit” for example, your organization has a better shot at showing up.
However, these ads, while effective, can get a little pricey. That’s where Ad Grants really help. Any 501(c)(3) can apply for this grant through a free Google Ads account. If your organization is approved, you’ll receive a $10,000 monthly stipend to run your advertisements!
13. Eventbrite for Nonprofits
As one of the most widely known event-based software tools, Eventbrite is as good as it gets. They make ticket-based events affordable with the ability to use the platform for free—offsetting fees as part of the ticket price and final donation. In addition to easy event attendee management, Eventbrite also has ample resources when it comes to event marketing, planning, and more!
14. Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack
Salesforce is one of the top CRM platforms in the world. Like many of the other tools on this list, their elite services can really add up. To ensure they don’t create a barrier to success for nonprofits, Salesforce developed the Nonprofit Success Pack. It offers a free version of their platform complete with built-in tools that help you manage programs, donations, volunteers, and supporters.
You can save a great deal of time with a tool that helps you to schedule your social media posts in advance. Buffer is one of the most affordable options out there. Their Starter Plans begin at $0 or $15 and allow you to manage up to three social media accounts. Their Business Plans run at $99, $199, and $299 each for upgraded services. However, they offer a 50% discount to all registered nonprofit organizations!
16. G Suite for Nonprofits
In addition to ad grants, Google also provides access to G Suite Basic for free to all 501(c)(3) nonprofits. Included in this deal is Gmail (for staff emails), Docs (no need to pay for Microsoft Word anymore), Calendar (with the ability to share schedules across teams) and Hangouts (for free video calling). It also includes Google Drive, which gives your team storage space for documents or presentations with the ability to share real-time feedback!
17. Hotjar for Nonprofits
In order to maximize your donations, it’s helpful to know how visitors to your website are behaving. Are they visiting your stories and impact pages? Do they know where to find the donation link? How do your calls to action perform? All of this can be discovered through Hotjar’s heatmaps. They track and record users’ sessions to your site and provide valuable data on the overall viewing trends. Luckily, Hotjar for Nonprofits offers a lifetime Business plan for approved nonprofit organizations!
When you search for the right nonprofit tools, it’s always a safe bet to find one that was developed specifically for NPO use. For nonprofit treasurers, the accounting software developed by MoneyMinder is exactly that. Enter transactions, reconcile accounts, quickly generate reports, accurately, track and manage events and fundraisers, and share financial reports with your board. All with this one program. You can demo the program with a free 30-day trial. From there, the software will only run you $159/year!
In a world of growing corporate social responsibility, more and more platforms want to make themselves accessible to groups focused on creating positive change in the world. At SimpleTexting especially, we love playing a part in the story of each of our nonprofit clients!
Now go forth and save the world, while also saving some serious cash!
Meghan Tocci is a content strategist at SimpleTexting. When she’s not writing about SaaS, she’s trying to teach her puppy Lou how to code. So far, not so good.More Posts from Meghan Tocci
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