As a nonprofit, there are multiple challenges that you face in your quest for sustained growth and larger impact.

The number of nonprofits registered with the IRS has doubled to 1.5 million organizations over the past 15 years. Meanwhile, for as long as we’ve been measuring it, charitable giving in the U.S. has remained constant at about 2% of someone’s income.

So, how are you ever to stand out from the croud and really make a splash? Well, there are several crucial keys involved, but one that we want to talk about today is this: the ability to identify your unique differentiators.

What makes your nonprofit stand out?

In other words, you can’t do what everyone else is doing. It drives me absolutely crazy when a nonprofit that is struggling financially witnesses another nonprofit’s fundraising activity and tries to replicate that perceived success, without analyzing if it actually makes sense for them. You have to analyze what you have to offer and who specifically would be willing to support that- and these, my friends, are your differentiators. 

A differentiator is a characteristic of your nonprofit that separates you from other nonprofits and gives you a perceived advantage in the eyes of your target donors and volunteers.

Our experience has been that, most nonprofits have three things (on average) that make up their differentiators. These are the three things at the heart of their DNA.

A differentiator MUST be…

  • True: You can’t make it up or include something that you hope to be.

  • Important to potential donors: If not, what’s the point?

  • Provable: If you can’t demonstrate that it is true, it won’t be believed or funded.

We recently published a new minicast that talks about how to identify your unique differentiators. We walk you through examples and prompts that can help make sure you stand out to your donors in this saturated market. It's a quick 10-minute chat. Listen in on our website or via iTunes below! 

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