Button Ideas for Non-Profits

Fundraising and marketing efforts are non-stop for non-profits! And a remarkably low-cost yet high-impact way to boost your fundraising and marketing strategy is with buttons!
A button-making system costs less than $300, which fits easily into any non-profit’s budget. Anyone can learn to operate it in just minutes. And buttons can be used for everything from special events to boosting name recognition of your important organization.

This is just a sampling of how non-profits can utilize buttons:

Idea #1: Advertise fundraising events

Gala dinners, 5K walks or runs, concerts–non-profits know how to undertake all manner of fundraising events! And a remarkably inexpensive way to help publicize your event is with buttons. Your staff members, board members and volunteers can wear buttons to publicize the event to the general public; this strategy is an inexpensive, fun and easy way to supplement your print, web, TV and radio advertising.

You can even mail buttons to donors with their gift acknowledgement letters during a specific time period leading up to the event.

Idea #2: Advertise special events

If you sponsor annual hikes, annual presentations or other special events, buttons can help you attract even more members of the general public. Your staff members, board members and volunteers can wear buttons to publicize the event. And again, buttons could be mailed during a specific time frame with all donor gift acknowledgement letters.

Idea #3: Extend post-special event publicity

If your recent fundraising event featured a big name, ride the coattails of success as long as your can to increase household name recognition of your group! For example, a button might read, “I met Mick Jagger at the NRDC bash. Save the planet so we can rock on!”

Idea #4: Solidify your marketing strategy

The buzz word in today’s marketing world is branding, and non-profits are no exception! Although you’re not directly competing with dollars that go to for-profit giants such as Coke or Pepsi, you are directly competing for name-recognition attention from the general public. You must consistently use your logo, your name, your tag line or all three in all your print and electronic applications. You must brand your name into your members’ and the public’s minds, especially in this day and age of information overload.

You must constantly remind current donors of and entice prospective donors with your vital mission. Buttons can be as simple as sporting your logo; your tag line is optional. Plus, making buttons is a fun activity for volunteers!

Idea #5: Door-to-door marketing and identification

An ID badge carries hefty credibility if your employees or volunteers must engage in door-to-door work, especially when it comes to little old ladies who want to feel safe. An ID badge also gives your group integrity, reassuring homeowners that your mission is not just a scam. It’s most effective for your door-to-door staff to wear two buttons: one ID button with their photo and name, and one button with your organization’s name and logo.

Idea #6: Board member and staff identification

It’s very important to cultivate relationships with your donors, so it’s always a good idea for board members, staff members and volunteers to wear ID badges during special events. Buttons are much less expensive than custom-made ID badges for your non-profit budget. Buttons are also much more professional-looking than handwritten, store-bought cheap plastic name badge holders–or worse yet, adhesive name tags.

Buttons are great for meetings of new board members, staff and board retreats, or conferences where members and the general public are invited.

Idea #7: Promote a specific campaign

Your mission is important, and sometimes that involves educating the public. Buttons can help spread your educational message: “Save our bay! Please don’t dump motor oil down storm drains” or “Plant a free tree from Arbor Green today!” Buttons can include your phone number or web site to encourage button viewers to take action.

Idea #8: Provide premiums for members

Buttons function as very cost-effective premiums for basic members. They are also very inexpensive and easy to mail with gift acknowledgement letters. Buttons sporting your logo work double-time as marketing devices, too, once they reach the destination of your member’s jacket lapel or bag.

Idea #9: Create an easy source of revenue

If you have a booth at a festival or conference, you can sell buttons alongside your t-shirts, coffee mugs, baseball caps and bumper stickers! You’ll recoup the cost of the button making system in no time; each button costs only pennies to make, yet you can sell each one for $2 or $3. Buttons are a fast-selling item because they’re inexpensive.

Idea #10: Offer giveaways at special events

Everyone loves freebies at special events and festivals, especially kids. And if kids are turned on to your mission, they will definitely turn their parents on to your mission! And that means more contributions and more members. Just hand out free buttons with your name, logo and perhaps your tag line to everyone who visits your table.