10+ Resources to Manage Nonprofit Communications in a Crisis [Templates]

By Jeilan Devanesan, Jun 02, 2020

Manage Nonprofit Communications Blog Header

Your biggest fundraiser has been cancelled. 

Your donors are disappointed.

Your team is now working remotely.

And you still have a cause to support and funds to raise. 

Any crisis is a major period of adjustment for you and your organization. Staying on top of nonprofit communications with your team, supporters and other stakeholders is more important than ever. 

The key to communicating strategy and new information effectively is to use the right visuals. You want to your messages to be clear, whether you’re talking strategy with your remote team or announcing changes to your many donors. To make your life easier, I’ve put together a bundle of nonprofit communications templates.

I’ve broken them down into the following categories. Click on the links to jump ahead!

  1. Nonprofit communications strategy templates
  2. Nonprofit donor communications templates
  3. COVID-19 communications templates

These resources will support your nonprofit communications, whether it’s with your team, organization, donors and other supporters over the next few months.

We also offer Venngage’s paid plans for half the price to nonprofit professionals. You can get Venngage Premium for $10/ month, and Venngage for Business for only $25/month.  Visit the Venngage for Nonprofits page to learn more! 


 

 

1. Nonprofit communications strategy templates

In just a few weeks, things have changed drastically. Your work is cut out for you. You need to get organized, be impactful and plan for the next few months. Chart a course and inform your team of new goals and deadlines. 

Create a fundraising strategy timeline for your team

Your fundraising plans have taken a hit. Now’s the time to reassess things and reassure your team that there’s a plan moving forward. Consider what are realistic goals for upcoming events, the next few weeks, and for the coming months. What is your communication and marketing strategy? Consider a variety of virtual events to experiment with to get your fundraising back on track. 

Roadmap_Strategy nonprofit


 

Laying out your plan in the format of a timeline can help orient your team. It provides a sense of structure and order that is often missing during a crisis. It can also be a way to keep your donors and other supporters informed on what to expect and how they can help.

Rather than just the next month, you may be planning for the rest of the year. A comprehensive fundraising strategy timeline would be necessary. With a detailed strategy timeline, your help break down large, organizational efforts into smaller, manageable objectives.

Fundraising Strategy Timeline Template


 

Create a detailed digital marketing checklist to keep the team aligned

Start with a clear digital marketing checklistA digital marketing checklist provides you with an overview of how different channels operate. Now is the time to revisit best practices with your team, making sure everyone is on the same page. 

Nonprofit Digital Marketing Checklist Template


 

This nonprofit digital marketing checklist is ready to customize, download and print off. We’ve designed the same digital marketing checklist as an infographic, making it easy to share and refer to online. Take a look.

Nonprofit Digital Marketing Checklist Infographic Template


 

Create checklists and guides for new platforms your organization decides to use

When you introduce new event formats like a virtual meeting or event, review every component with your team. What do you need to launch a successful virtual meeting or event? What are the roles and responsibilities of different team members? What is the communication strategy to convey this change for attendees? 

A virtual event checklist (or virtual meeting checklist) for your organization will help with planning, provides reassurance and is a great resource for everyone to have access to. 

Nonprofit Virtual Meeting Checklist Template


 

Once you’ve communicated these details to your own team, you’ll need to communicate these changes to your stakeholders. What can they expect? How do they participate? How do they even join the virtual event? A virtual event meeting checklist is an effective way to keep people informed.

Virtual Fundraiser Event Newsletter Template


 

An infographic on how your virtual event will run helps your audience understand these changes and plan accordingly. It also reassures your supporters that the event well-planned, thought out, comprehensive, and substantial in value. 

Finally, everyone appreciates a stunning event program that details the entire event schedule. Event programs are helpful, informative resources that highlight the contributions of your partners, influencers, vendors and more. Like for any event, create a handy virtual event program for your virtual fundraising event! 

Virtual Fundraiser Event Program Template


 

2. Nonprofit donor communications templates

Having to cancel a major fundraiser can be disappointing for your organization and all its supporters. All the hard work, the momentum, and the excitement that was building leading up to the event has just fizzled out. 

Canceling or postponing meetings with board members is also disruptive. You miss the opportunity to have discussions, and make important decisions.

What’s next? That’s what everyone is wondering.

So communicate the current situation openly and clearly. Connect with your community as often as needed. And whether you’ve got a plan or just a plan in the works, be open and honest about it.

This is also a great opportunity to reaffirm your nonprofit’s mission, the work it does, and how donor contributions support the cause and community you serve. Remind board members why they are part of the organization, the value of their work and how you will continue to move forward.

Thousands of nonprofits support across the country support local communities everyday, their work is tremendously important and its essential that everyone remembers that. So remind them!

Create event update newsletters and event update social media posts

Design event update newsletters that are clear. Be open and transparent with your supports, and reassure them of your continued mission. Be sure to communicate often so that they are always up to date with what your organization is doing.

Fundraiser Event Email Newsletter Template


 

Complement your email newsletter updates with social media posts. Repurpose the visual style of your newsletter for easy social media content that can be posted right away! Or use our complementary social media templates (like this Instagram post template) for a head start on design work.

Fundraiser Instagram Post Template


 

Julia Campbell recently shared a drive folder of nonprofit communication examples for anyone to view. You can check out the original Tweet here. You should also visit her blog for more nonprofit resources.

Prepare for virtual board member presentations

Important meetings can’t just be canceled or postponed. In times of crisis, it’s essential that you’re communicating with board members and other stakeholders to determine the right steps your nonprofit has to take. First, you’ll need the right platform.

With the right platform in place, prepare your presentation deck. You want to design visually-engaging presentation decks that complement and guide the content of your virtual meeting.

Nonprofit Stakeholder Presentation Template


Joan Garry also put together a great post for running a virtual meeting with board members. She breaks down how to rethink the entire format of your meeting and still make it a productive one. Check it out here.

 

3. COVID-19 communications templates

There’s a lot of information coming to us all from every direction. News bulletins, press conferences, online articles, op-eds, chain-messages and more. Naturally, there’s quite a bit of misinformation, too. 

Never assume your entire team is clear on exactly what’s going on and what comes next. With so much change in such a short period of time, your team will need a lot of support and reassurance. When it comes to remote team communication, expect to over-communicate and plan accordingly. 

For concepts like social distancing and self-isolation, it’s helpful to share a simple guide on what they mean. We put together a social distancing Instagram carousel template to share with our own team, our online followers and Venngage community. You can customize this template to share this template with your own organization and audience. 

Create social distancing social media infographics

Social Distancing Facebook Template


 

Take advantage of content formats on different social media platforms. On Instagram and LinkedIn for example, you can post image carousels or slides in a single post. This Social Distancing Instagram Carousel Template does just that.

Social Distancing Instagram Carousel Template


 

Provide a self-isolation infographic guide on how to cope at home

Staying at home for days at a time is not something we’re all used to. People get restless, irritable, and bored. You can make a list infographic to help your team understand how to stay at home in a healthy, engaging and constructive way. Our leadership team created an infographic for us as a handy resource that we’ve made available to you! 

Manage Self-Isolation Infographic Template


 

Design a work-from-home infographic guide to support the team 

Not everyone has a home office, or feels like their home is an ideal work environment. I’ve just started week two of working from home and keeping a routine has certainly helped. But I’m also touching base with colleagues who have always worked remotely, and looking for advice online from remote professionals. 

Our designers created a guide for the Venngage team to help keep us all accountable and on top of our tasks.

Work From Home Infographic Template


 
 

You also want to get your hands on video call and conferencing tools to facilitate remote meetings. One of the most popular options right now is Zoom. You can also check out FreeConferenceCall, Microsoft Teams, or BlueJeans. In some cases, even Google Hangouts will meet your needs.

Visual communication is invaluable, especially when all your communications happens online. For the next few weeks or months, you can expect to communicate a tremendous amount of information. As situations change, as trends change, or new developments arise, you will have to constantly respond in a prompt, professional and engaging way. Highly visual content will help you get your message across loud and clear.

Check out these additional resources to support your visual communication and design needs.

6 Types of Nonprofit Infographics to Boost Your Campaigns

Nonprofit Boost Campaigns Blog Header

How to Create Accessible Infographics with Venngage

Create Accessible Infographics Venngage

How to Import Spreadsheets Directly from Google Drive into Your Infographics and Charts

Import Spreadsheets into Venngage Charts Header

 



Related Resource:

Infographics_Masterclass

Join Venngage’s CEO, Eugene Woo, to learn how you can design impactful infographics in 5 steps

 

About Jeilan Devanesan

Jeilan's a copywriter at Venngage. He enjoys reporting on design trends, tips and hacks. He also enjoys hitting the gym, creative writing and binging on books. You can find him on LinkedIn.