5 Ways to Make Your Brand Stand Out

Learn five tips for how to make your non-profits brand stand out

Having a great brand is well… great — but only if others know about it. If you want your non-profit to thrive you have to make your brand stand out.

Here are 5 ways you adjust your brand so it stands out.

Note: You don’t have to implement all of these. Even implementing 1 or 2 is enough to start improving awareness.

1. Create a narrative

Storytelling is powerful. In fact, people are about 22x times more likely to remember facts if they’re part of a story (Actual Minds, Possible Worlds by Jerome Bruner).

To create your narrative think about the following:

  • What was the event or thought that led to the non-profit being created?
  • What change are you trying to create through the non-profit?
  • What does the world look like if you’re able to successfully create that change?
  • How does a donor fit into the change you creating?

Another important part of creating a narrative is to make sure you invite your donors to be part of the story. Show how they can join you in your quest to change the world.

2. Go against the grain

This one is a little generic, but it comes down to a simple task — subvert expectations.

This can be done in a few ways.

Offer a different view point or solution to a problem

When you look around at similar non-profits do you agree with their view of the world or their approach? If not, let everyone know you think differently about the situation.

Present a different tone

Do other non-profits in your niche all sound the same?

For example, think about non-profits related to pet shelters. Most of them show sad animals and the whole situation is presented in a somber tone. But, what if one of those non-profits had a tone that focused on happy animals and the life they now live with their new families after they’ve been adopted? It would certainly get your attention.

So, see if there is a way for your brand to set a new tone. 

3. Stand out visually

To do this think about the non-profits who are similar to you. What types of visuals do they tend to use? Do they all use similar imagery? Or, perhaps you notice the same color schemes over and over again?

In the end, you’ll likely find there’s a lot of similarities between them all. This means there are opportunities to visually separate your non-profit from others.

Even a simple color change or visual style can make your brand stand out.

However, before you make any visual changes to your brand make sure you consult with a branding expert. Or you can reach out to us for an Introductory Call. 

4. Target your messaging

This is not easy, but it’s very effective.

The goal is to make your messaging resonate so well that a potential donor feels like you’re speaking directly to them. The messaging should align with their values and vision of the world. It should also show you understand the thoughts they’re having and addressing any concerns of theirs.

The challenging part is that targeting your message requires an in-depth understanding of your ideal donors and why they choose to support you. If you need some assistance defining your ideal donors our article provides you insights on how to do that.

5. Have a spokesperson

Okay, this one can be tricky to navigate but it will definitely make your brand stand out.

Having a spokesperson gives your brand a human element, but it then ties your brand to that person. This can be great if your spokesperson lives and shares the same values of your non-profit’s brand. Bonus points if your spokesperson is well known and well liked.

But, be warned — it can backfire as well. If your spokesperson does something to contradict your brand or has negative press it can cause issues for your brand.

To avoid that issue, you can also go with the option of creating a fictional spokesperson. You’ll have to build up the reputation and personality of the spokesperson, but it does give you complete control of the messaging.

Need pro bono help with your non-profit's marketing? Reach out to set up an Introductory Call.

Justin Lynch
Justin Lynch

Justin is a Brand Strategist at Avlier, a brand consulting company.