Business development for nonprofit organizations is also known as social entrepreneurship because nonprofit organizations are not just fighting for a cause; they are real businesses. Their non-commercial goals must be combined with commercial and entrepreneurial skills to succeed.
The main activities for the development of a nonprofit organization
Consider the steps a successful nonprofit business development professional must take to achieve critical goals:
- Develop mutually beneficial relationships with corporations: many corporations strive to meet social and environmental standards, such as reducing environmental impact or improving the lives of low-income people. It’s where you come in to build mutually beneficial relationships with these corporations. Following the same steps as a commercial business developer, you need to influence the decision maker on capital allocation.
- Focus on local companies: if you work for a world-famous nonprofit foundation, it makes sense to turn to large corporations. But suppose your NGO is still in its development phase. In that case, it’s a good idea to start by building your reputation in the local community, thereby increasing your brand reputation, which will lead to more recognition and sponsorship.
- Get clear on your brand: to have a successful strategy, like a commercial business, an NGO needs to have a clear idea of who they are and what they stand for. It’s not just charity; it’s improving the world, helping, caring, empowering, and protecting. Branding defines social goals and reinforces internal and external identities. It plays a vital role in building partnerships and seeking donors.
As a business development specialist working for a nonprofit organization, you are interested in attracting not only external funding but also talented employees for your organization, as well as gaining the trust of authorities and political parties.