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Goal Setting for your Google Grants Campaign – Beyond Fundraising

“Can we use our Google Grant for fundraising?” I get that question a lot, and my usual answer is: yes, in a way. The slightly longer version of that answer is that, yes, fundraising is allowed and many organizations use Google Grants in that way – but it won’t necessary be an effective use for every organization. Search ads are a tough space for fundraising because you get so little space – just a few words! no images! – to make a connection and build trust with potential donors. Direct fundraising asks tend to work best for organizations with a lot of brand recognition (think household-name nonprofits), or those with a mission that strongly invites donations. If you’re a relief organization, for instance, or if you’re working for a cure of a specific disease, people who come to you through search ads are probably primed to donate, because they’re looking to support that specific cause. If someone Googles “help people in Syria” and you show them an ad about supporting aid work in Syria, you’ve probably just gotten yourself a donor. But sadly, most organizations don’t have thousands of people Googling how to give money to your cause. If a Read More

Finding the Keyword Sweet Spot for your Google Grants

Google Grants is a pretty terrific program for 501(c)3 nonprofits. If you’re not familiar with it, Google offers $10,000 per month in free search ads to qualified nonprofits. It’s easy to apply, and if used properly, it can give a nice boost to your online goals. I’ve seen organizations use Google Grants to build their email lists, for instance, with great success. But while the Grants program is quite similar to using a paid Adwords account, there are certain limitations that require a different strategy than you’d use for paid ads. That can make it tricky to figure out what will perform best for your Grants account. With a “normal” Adwords account, your success is based largely on your budget and the competition for your keywords. (It’s also based on the quality of your content – but that’s a topic for another post.) If you’re advertising on a popular topic using a very general keyword, like “donate,” you’re going to get a lot of competition from other non-profits. To beat that competition, you have two choices: Get more specific. If you can advertise instead on, say, “donate to save octopuses,” you’ll have less competition and lower costs – assuming people Read More