As a senior Strategic and Corporate Communication major with the aspiration to work for a non-profit organization post-graduation, I decided to take SCC 425—Communication in the Non-Profit Organization. Throughout this course, I learned about specific methods for what makes a non-profit successful. Some main topics focused on building an effective mission statement, appealing to a target audience based on positioning, donor retention, and designing a successful offer. With an understanding of these topics, I got the chance to review a non-profit throughout the semester, craft my own donor letter, and develop an offer design for the organization of my choosing.
Analyzing an organization and writing about it taught me to focus on each specific aspect involved in its success or failure. For example, I looked into the mission statement, financials, branding, media, and more. Ultimately, all these different factors showed me what is important for an organization to function. Another valuable assignment was creating my own donor letter for a non-profit. This donor letter involved writing an email to a potential supporter. I learned there are many details that go into writing a successful letter. Some of these elements include asking for a donation multiple times, using images with eyes to attract the audience, and telling a story that will bring the cause to life.
A crucial assignment for this course was producing an offer design to get the public interested based on what an organization has to offer. This offer can be for anyone interested in the non-profit, such as donors or volunteers. It also involves five different parts: the core benefit, basic offer, expected offer, augmented offer, and potential offer. The design starts with the most basic part of an organization that makes people interested, which would generally be the mission statement. It ends with the augmented and potential offers, which should be something that the public wouldn’t expect to happen and something that hasn’t been previously explored. For example, an unexpected offer that would increase interest for the organization would be giving out free t-shirts at an event, while something never explored could be to give a shoutout to volunteers on social media. Creating an offer design for various situations helps the organization gain more interest. Writing my own offer design was beneficial because I got to learn about how to spark interest in the public through the different elements of an organization.
After completing this course, I am now able to decern the different factors that make an organization successful, as well as particular elements that may need improvement. The main assignment for SCC 425 was an in-depth analysis of an organization focusing on central concepts learned in class. The organization I chose to review was The Humane League (THL), an international nonprofit that advocates for farm animal welfare. This organization appealed to me because of the internship position I had with THL a few semesters back.
You can read more about my internship experience with The Humane League here.
As a new media intern with The Humane League, I focused on social media engagement and growth for their particular target audience. Taking non-profit communication taught me about this target audience. For example, with its emphasis on encouraging the public to get involved with animal advocacy, I learned that THL is a cause-based organization. This means that in order to effectively communicate with THL’s audience, it is crucial to stress the importance of the organization’s mission in order to increase engagement.
Not only has this class provided me with a greater understanding of how a non-profit organization communicates, but it also gave me insight into how any organization or company works based on its mission. Overall, I gained knowledge that will further allow me to excel in my future career, as I am now highly aware of the major aspects that make an organization successful. With this in-depth understanding of non-profits and focus on application-based assignments throughout the course, I am confident that SCC 425 has taught me countless skills that I will be able to apply to any professional workplace situation.