Content Marketing for Nonprofits That Spreads Your Message

Content Marketing for Nonprofits

Imagine you’re in a cooking competition. The well-funded for-profit companies are like celebrity chefs with gourmet ingredients and fancy gadgets. Your nonprofit is the home cook with modest ingredients and simple tools. 

But here’s the secret: with creativity and passion, you can create a dish that’s just as impressive. 

With a solid content strategy and SEO, you can serve up content that stands out and wins over your audience. 

Remember, while for-profits have deeper pockets, a focused content marketing strategy can empower your nonprofit to make an even greater impact.

Let’s get cooking!

Why Nonprofits Need a Content Strategy

Effective content marketing for nonprofits focuses on a strategy that outlines how your nonprofit will use content to achieve its goals. It ensures each piece has a clear, measurable goal—whether it’s a blog post, guide, podcast episode, or video. Your strategy helps you connect with your audience and drive your mission forward by building awareness and trust.

Nonprofits that want to spread their message and reach new donors will benefit from a content marketing strategy that organizes their efforts.


increase in
organic traffic


featured snippets won
630.77% increase


keywords in top 20
87.6% increase

How to Create a Content Strategy for Nonprofits

To develop an effective content strategy for your nonprofit, you need to follow some essential steps and use the right ingredients—just like a recipe.

1. Define Clear & Objective Goals

Your goal is to attract ideal supporters and guide them through your engagement series. 

To accomplish this you need:

  • Mission Objectives. Define goals that directly support your nonprofit’s mission. Think increasing awareness about your cause, driving volunteer engagement, or boosting donations.
  • Marketing Objectives. Set goals to enhance your nonprofit’s visibility and outreach. This can include increasing brand awareness, generating leads, and fostering community engagement.
  • SEO Objectives. Establish goals to improve your online presence, such as higher search engine rankings and increased organic traffic. Focus on relevant long-tail keywords and building quality backlinks to boost your site’s authority.

2. Identify Your Target Audience

Start by developing a detailed roadmap with interviews and in-depth research. Gather details such as: 

  • Key Competitors. Identify your main competitors and their strategies to find opportunities for differentiation.
  • Website Goals. Clarify the objectives like informing, engaging, or converting visitors.
  • Marketing Goals and Expectations. Define goals, such as increasing donations, volunteer sign-ups, or event participation.

This information helps you create content that resonates with your ideal customer and drives meaningful action.

3. Keyword Research (Find the Questions Your Audience Asks)

Keywords are a valuable starting point when creating content for your nonprofit. They represent real people searching for solutions and information related to your mission.

Consider metrics like search volume and keyword difficulty, balancing these against the potential impact on achieving your goals. 

For instance, evaluate:

  • Keyword Difficulty. The likelihood of ranking for a specific keyword, given your nonprofit’s website strength and competitors’ use of the keyword.
  • Search Volume. The number of searches for a keyword, indicating its relevance and potential to drive traffic.

Begin with a list of high-value keywords. They form the backbone of your content plan, helping ensure you achieve your nonprofit’s goals.

4. Competitive Gap Analysis

Through competitor gap analysis, identify opportunities where your nonprofit can excel. This includes spotting areas where competitors may be weak but where you can create strong, valuable content.

First, identify your main competitors and analyze their strategies to find opportunities for differentiation. 

Then, use tools like Semrush and Ahrefs to compile a list of the top keywords they rank for and discover new, relevant keywords to target. 

ADD gap analysis Ahrefs

When examining competitor content, focus on: 

  • High-Quality Keywords. Identify the keywords your competitors are ranking for.
  • Top Pages. Determine which of their pages are receiving the most organic traffic.
  • Covered Topics. Analyze the topics they are focusing on.
  • Page Types. Understand the types of pages they are ranking with (e.g., blog posts, landing pages).
  • Content Types. Note the different types of content they produce (e.g., articles, videos, infographics).

5. Content Hubs, Pillars, and Clusters (Oh, My!)

Once you have a list of topics relevant to your nonprofit’s mission, organize them into clusters.

Start by anchoring your content marketing strategy with pillar pages. These comprehensive, in-depth guides act as content hubs for your key topics. 

Pillar pages provide a broad overview and link to more detailed articles within your topic clusters.

Why pillar pages and topic clusters?

Pillar pages and topic clusters are essential for several reasons.

  • Improved SEO. Search engines prefer well-organized content that covers topics thoroughly. Pillar pages help establish your nonprofit’s authority on key subjects, while topic clusters show depth and relevance.
  • Enhanced User Experience. Organizing content into clusters makes it easier for visitors to find the information they need. This structure guides them through related topics, keeping them engaged and on your site longer.
  • Comprehensive Coverage. Pillar pages introduce broad topics, and topic clusters allow you to dive deeper into specific aspects. For example, a pillar page on “Environmental Conservation” can link to topic clusters covering “Plastic Waste Reduction,” “Local Conservation Projects,” and “Volunteer Opportunities.”

Creating Your Pillar Pages and Topic Clusters

  • Identify Core Topics. Determine the main subjects that align with your nonprofit’s goals. These will become your pillar pages.
  • Develop Subtopics. Break down each core topic into detailed subtopics. These will form your topic clusters. For instance, under a pillar page about “Community Health,” you might have clusters on “Nutrition Programs,” “Mental Health Resources,” and “Exercise Initiatives.”
  • Use Mind-Mapping Tools. Visualize the relationship between pillar pages and topic clusters. This helps ensure your content is logically organized and covers all necessary aspects of your mission.
  • Link Strategically. Link from pillar pages to the detailed cluster articles and vice versa. This internal linking structure boosts SEO and helps users navigate your site more effectively.

6. Content Plan and Calendar

Each nonprofit requires a unique approach when it comes to strategizing and producing content. To stay organized, use visual tools like Asana, Trello, or CoSchedule to manage your content plans effectively.

ADDA Asana Editorial Calendar

Our process involves developing a comprehensive content marketing strategy that outlines exactly what content to produce, the keywords to target, and a detailed editorial calendar to track publication schedules. 

Here’s a glimpse of what that looks like.

  • Tailored Approach. Every nonprofit has different needs. Customize your nonprofit’s content strategy to align with your specific goals and audience.
    Visual Organization. Using a visual board in tools like Asana will help you stay organized and maintain a clear overview of your content pipeline. 
  • Editorial Calendar. Choose how far in advance you want to plan. Two weeks, four weeks, six weeks? Try to keep it balanced and flexible, just in case.
  • Prioritization with ICE Method. To ensure you focus on the most impactful content, try using the ICE method (Impact, Confidence, Ease). Each content idea is scored on a scale of 1–10 for these three criteria, helping prioritize the efforts that will yield the best results.
    • Impact: How significant will the content be in achieving our goals?
    • Confidence: How confident are we in the content’s potential success?
    • Ease: How easy is it to produce and implement the content?
    • By scoring each idea, you can prioritize high-impact content that aligns with your nonprofit’s mission and resources.
  • Continuous Improvement. After each two-week cycle, we analyze our results to understand what worked and what didn’t. This continuous feedback loop allows us to refine our strategy and improve future content efforts, ensuring we maximize your nonprofit’s return on investment (ROI).

7. Create Helpful Content (Quality Over Quantity)

Creating helpful and high-quality content is essential for nonprofits to build trust and engage their audience. 

Here’s how.

1. Provide Valuable Content

  • Informative Articles. Educate your audience about your cause with articles on relevant topics.
  • Practical Guides. Empower your audience with how-to guides on volunteering or organizing community events or other important activities.
  • Inspiring Stories. Share impactful stories of individuals and communities positively affected by your work to inspire and motivate support.

2. Harness the Power of Storytelling

  • Emotional Connection. Use personal stories and testimonials to create an emotional bond with your audience, making your cause more relatable.
  • Demonstrate Impact. Show tangible results through before-and-after scenarios, success stories, and detailed case studies.

3. Establish Authority and Trust

  • Expert Insights. Publish content that showcases your expertise, including interviews, research findings, and opinion pieces to establish your topical authority.
  • Transparency. Share detailed reports on your operations and funding to build credibility.
  • Consistency. Maintain a regular publishing schedule so you’re seen as a reliable and trusted resource.

4. Encourage Audience Interaction

  • Engage and Share. Prompt your audience to comment on and share your content on social media to increase reach and foster community.
  • Interactive Content. Use surveys, quizzes, and polls to engage your audience and invite participation.

8. Audit Your Current Content: Keep It, Refresh It, Delete It

To ensure your nonprofit’s content aligns with your goals, it’s essential to audit your existing content—from blog posts to donation pages. This process will help you determine the next step or “action” for each page on your website.

First, use analytics to measure engagement and conversions for each page and post.

Next, decide on the appropriate action for each page: keep it as is, refresh the content, or delete it.


These are valuable pages that meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Rank well for important keywords
  • Essential site pages (About, Contact, and Privacy Policy)
  • Key pages such as donation forms, volunteer sign-ups, testimonials, and success stories


These pages have potential but need improvement, such as updating information, enhancing SEO, or improving content quality.


Pages that no longer serve any purpose, including:

  • Thin content that offers little value
  • Outdated event announcements or expired campaigns
  • Duplicate content

9. Promote Your Content

After publishing, promoting your nonprofit’s content across various channels is essential to increase visibility and engagement. 

Here’s how to effectively promote your content.

1. Utilize Social Media

Social media is one of the most effective ways to share your content. Choose platforms where your audience is most active and promote your content there. For instance, if your audience is primarily on Facebook and Instagram, focus your efforts on those platforms. Share updates, articles, and stories to engage your followers and encourage sharing.

Facebook ADDA post

2. Leverage Republishing Platforms

Republishing your content on platforms like Medium, LinkedIn, and nonprofit-specific sites can help reach a broader audience. This not only exposes your content to new readers but also helps build credibility and authority in your field.

3. Conduct Email Outreach

Email newsletters are a powerful tool to keep your supporters informed and engaged. Send regular updates featuring your latest content, success stories, and upcoming events. Personalized email campaigns can also encourage donations and volunteer sign-ups.

4. Get Featured on External Websites

Collaborate with other websites, blogs, and online publications to feature your content. This can include guest posts, interviews, and collaborations with others in your niche. Getting your content featured externally increases its reach and credibility.

5. Focus on Building Your Backlink Profile

When you publish great content, you naturally encourage other websites to link to the helpful resources on your website. More backlinks signal to search engines that your content is valuable, which can improve its ranking in search results. 

10. Track and Measure Performance

After publishing and promoting your nonprofit’s content, it’s crucial to actively track performance metrics to ensure it achieves its goals and generates meaningful results. 

This ongoing process involves two key activities: auditing existing content and analyzing performance analytics.

1. Auditing Existing Content

Regularly audit your content to keep it relevant and effective. This involves updating keywords, refreshing or updating, and improving content.

2. Analyzing and Forecasting Performance

Use analytics tools like Google Search Console and Semrush to track and analyze your content’s performance. 

Google search console performance

Key steps include:

  • Tracking Key Metrics. Monitor metrics such as page views, engagement rates, click-through rates, and conversion rates to gauge how well your content is performing.
  • Responding to Search Engine Updates. Stay informed about search engine algorithm changes and adjust your SEO strategies to maintain or improve your rankings.
  • Assessing Distribution Channels. Evaluate the effectiveness of different distribution channels, both internal (your website, email newsletters) and external (social media, partner websites). Determine which channels drive the most traffic and engagement and optimize your strategy accordingly.

3. Making Data-Driven Adjustments 

Based on your analysis, make necessary adjustments to your content strategy. 

This includes:

  • Identifying Trends. Recognize patterns in your data to understand what types of content resonate most with your audience.
  • Forecasting Performance. Use historical data to predict future performance and plan content that aligns with your goals and audience interests.
  • Optimizing Content Delivery. Refine your publishing schedule and promotion tactics to maximize reach and engagement.

By regularly auditing and analyzing your content, you ensure it remains impactful and aligned with your nonprofit’s mission.

Elevate Your Cause: Proven Content Strategies for Nonprofits

With a clear plan and consistent effort, you can compete with for-profits and make a meaningful impact through your nonprofit’s content strategy. 

Want some proof from a company just like yours? Check out our case study on, which details how we helped them reach an additional 100,000 people per month (and that number is still growing).

Contact us today so we can help you serve up content that resonates with your audience and furthers your cause!

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