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Nonprofit Virtual MarketingAugust - 2020


While coronavirus may have turned our world upside down, nonprofits still have communities to serve and fundraising goals to achieve. For a nonprofit, virtual marketing will be vital to achieving those goals.

Fundraising is the lifeblood of nonprofits. But, in a research study from the Charities Aid Foundation of America a survey of 550 nonprofits showed that 97% reported negative effects related to the virus, including a 68% drop in donations.

Additionally, 88% of nonprofit organizations canceled major events in response to the virus and half of those organizations did not have any alternative fundraising plans.

For UCAN, a 151-year-old nonprofit from Chicago, becoming a victim to COVID19 was not an option.  

As UCAN geared up for its largest fundraising event of the year, the 2020 Youth Leadership Awards, the organization faced a difficult decision. With the fiscal year wrapping up at the end of June, the event needed to go on as scheduled on June 4, but hosting it in-person was no longer an option. 

For the first time in 150 years, all of UCAN’s fundraising would need to be done virtually.

AE Marketing Group began working with UCAN in 2013 to bring clarity and consensus to its brand and improve the organization’s positioning for future fundraising. In 2019, AE produced all video assets for YLA and we were set to lead video production for the 2020 event as well. As Chicago’s shelter-in-place order continued to extend, UCAN made the decision to hold the event virtually. To do so, they sought AE’s strategic and creative nonprofit virtual marketing advice to rethink fundraising, storytelling, and event planning in a virtual environment.

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