• Ajay Mohan

What is Non-profit marketing?


Marketing scholars began exploring the application of marketing to non-profit organizations in 1969. Since then, non-profit organizations have increasingly turned to the market for growth, funding, and prosperity.

Although it is difficult to define “non-profit” organizations because of the existence of a number of quasi-governmental organizations, a study in the early 21st century found more than 1.5 million private, non-profit organizations in the United States. Some experts believe that the way to distinguish between organizations is according to their sources of funding. The three major sources are profits, government revenues (such as grants or taxes), and voluntary donations. In addition, a legally defined non-profit organization is one that has been granted tax-exempt status by the Internal Revenue Service. However, while non-profit groups can be defined legally, it is more helpful to focus on the specific marketing activities that need to be performed within the organization’s environment. Museums, hospitals, universities, and churches are all examples of non-profit organizations. Although many individuals may believe that non-profit organizations have only a small impact on the economy, the operating expenditures of private non-profit organizations now represent a significant percentage of the U.S. gross national product. In addition, many of these are substantial enterprises.

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