Course Name
Raise Visibility and Money for your Non Profit Through Targeted Communications Strategies

Contact Hours: 40

Course Description
A practical, applied instructor-led course spanning 40 contact hours. Meaningful, focused communication is critical to the success of any organization. However, many nonprofits fail to plan what they will say, to whom, and when. Instead, they react to situations as they arise, thereby missing opportunities to get their message out.

Using case studies and student experiences, this course addresses the types of written communication that are essential to the workings of nonprofits. It is suitable for staff, board members, and volunteers, as well as for those intending to work for nonprofits in the future. Writing for social media is covered.Case studies and other reading materials will be provided by email as the student progresses through the lessons.

Enrolled students get significantly more instruction when compared with typical 24 contact hour programs.

As a result of taking this class you will be able to:  
  • Understand the importance of audience-centered communication.
  • Identify an organization’s many audiences.
  • Define the goals of organizational communication.
  • Articulate the information needs of particular audiences.
  • Determine what type of communication is most appropriate for a given audience and situation.
  • Produce copy in a variety of formats, including meeting agendas, minutes, fundraising letters, press releases, social media posts, and editorials.
  • Use what you have learned to draft a communications plan.
  • Develop long-term relationships with your audiences.

Written assignments turned into the instructor for review and comment.

Required Book(s)

  1. Lesson 1. Audience-Centered Communication

    The people with whom you want to share your message are likely being inundated with information from other worthy organizations, the media, advertisers, family, and friends. As Sarah Durham writes in Brandraising, attracting and keeping their attention requires that you “make the case on their terms, not yours.” In this lesson, you will learn to distinguish between organizational knowledge and information to be conveyed.

  2. Lesson 2. Audience Identification-Targeting

    Nonprofits have multiple audiences, both internal and external. How you address coworkers, board members, donors, and beneficiaries is likely to vary, even when the core message is the same. In this lesson, you will practice identifying specific audiences and tailoring a similar message to each one.

  3. Lesson 3. Establishing Communication Goals

    To communicate effectively requires planning, and planning requires knowing what you hope to accomplish. In this lesson, you will begin to consider the specific communication goals of a nonprofit organization.

  4. Lesson 4. Who Needs to Know What & When?

    As stated in Lesson 2, it is important to address each audience in a particular way. In addition, different audiences require different types of information. In this lesson, you will begin to consider the nature and timing of messages for various recipient groups.

  5. Lesson 5. Determining the Best Format for a Message

    Building on the previous lesson, you will learn to identify the most appropriate medium for a given audience and situation.

  6. Lesson 6. Trying it Out-See how your message works 

    Now you will put the previous lessons into practice by producing specific kinds of writing you are likely to encounter in working with a nonprofit.

  7. Lesson 7. How to Draft a Communications Plan

    Having a communications plan can help an organization craft messages that work well together and are delivered to the right people at the right time. In this lesson, you will synthesize what you have learned and introduce it into a plan.

  8. Lesson 8. Developing and Maintaining Meaningful Connections

    Written communication does not exist in a vacuum. Audiences are, of course, made up of people, and it is people who support and benefit from a nonprofit’s work. Without the human connection behind them, the words on the page or on the screen are useless. In this lesson you will think beyond the writing, and consider the target you hope to affect. There is no reading for the remaining assignments; be creative, and draw on your life experience and share with the course instructor.