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An Impact Story : Opening New Doors for a Foster Care Agency

Updated: Jul 29

Every child deserves a happy home. Isn’t it? Learn how a solid nonprofit marketing strategy enabled a foster care agency to enhance its digital marketing footprint and amplify its donor base, empowering it to do what it does best—serving a zillion children looking for that happy home. 



Imagine a child walking away with a loving family? Wouldn’t it a happy sight?


But according to Adoption Network Law Center, “More than 60% of children in foster care spend two to five years in the system before being adopted. Almost 20% spend five or more years in foster care before being adopted. Some never get adopted.” While the Center also notes that “About 135,000 children are adopted in the United States each year,” finding a happy home for children placed in foster care or for adoption, is a labor of tireless effort and commitment. 


Fortunately, there are many organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area committed to finding that home for these children. One such local organization opened its doors in 1996 as a Foster Family Program with a mission to empower children and families to develop the insights, life skills, and permanent relationships that promote their social, emotional, educational, and economic well-being. It eventually, grew into a comprehensive foster care agency. 


Since its inception, the agency has served more than 2000 children and finalized 300 adoptions and has become one of the few organizations in Alameda, San Francisco, and Solano counties with expertise in assessing and providing behavioral health services to children 0-5 involved in the social services system.


However, with its evolution came unique challenges. The two unique challenges that the organization was grappling with at the time it approached CLASS were weak marketing infrastructure and limitations in availability and diversity of funding.


The organization did not have a nonprofit marketing strategy in place to support its fundraising and donor development initiatives. In addition, its revenue stream was dominated by government funding at the time, which exposed it to financial risk in case they lost to a competitor or the funding was curtailed. The trouble for them was finding a renewable and diverse source of funding such as private donors, without hampering the available government funding. 


The task at hand for our team was dual-focused. The immediate need was to create a marketing strategy to promote the organization’s then-upcoming gala event and develop a strategic marketing plan supporting its long-term needs. 


Driven by its passion to help bay area nonprofit organizations best harness their underutilized resources for a greater good, our team began its work at the top by interviewing the leadership of this agency, evaluating the critical challenges, and developing a marketing strategy. 


Defining goals for a tactical nonprofit marketing strategy

We divided our approach into long-term and short-term goals to achieve tangible results. At an instantaneously level, our objective was to lay a roadmap its gala event, which included identifying marketing requirements, developing marketing strategies, and outlining a social media plan.


Our long-term goal was to develop a strategy that would enable this nonprofit organization to create a strategic marketing infrastructure– customized messages, strategies, collateral – to support its marketing objectives, as well as, access increased funding to support its new programs and expand its existing programs, reducing the financial risk by diversifying its revenue profile. 


Delivering a strategic solution

Our team delivered a solution that recommended a shift in the marketing paradigm. After a detailed study of the organizational requirement, goals, and competitor analysis, we identified the shifting of marketing focus toward digital channels, specifically toward social media and website. The solution aimed at enhancing brand recognition by donors, establishing creditability, and improving transparency with target audiences.


The phenomenal results

While working with this organization, we found that developing a marketing strategy for a nonprofit makes a huge difference in achieving the desired success. 


It was no surprise then that creating a well-designed nonprofit marketing strategy led to phenomenal results for this foster care agency. We found from our impact survey with this client that its website and social media traffic increased by 26-50 percent at the time, and it attracted 30 percent more corporate and individual donors and over 20 percent more volunteers. 


Want to learn more about the solutions and analysis we performed to help this client? Read the complete case study here


Impressed! Contact us here.


About The CLASS Consulting Group

The CLASS Consulting Group is a trusted advisor to the board of directors and senior leadership of the bay area nonprofit organizations. It is a boutique management consulting firm headquartered in the San Francisco Bay Area that provides consulting services to senior management and board of directors of nonprofit organizations and offers community leadership opportunities to professionals.   


Since 2002 CLASS’ volunteers have been assisting nonprofit organizations in the SF Bay Area and supporting the communities in which, we all live and work.  Learn more about our mission and story. 

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