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Free digital advertising for nonprofits with Google Ad Grants

By September 9, 2020Digital

In the COVID-19 recession, many nonprofits are facing tighter budgets than ever. Fortunately, Google offers a free resource that goes overlooked by too many nonprofits but which offers a remarkably valuable in-kind advertising donation to qualifying organizations. 

Google Ad Grants works just like Google Ads online advertising, by displaying your message to people searching for keywords relevant to your organization. If you’re a qualifying nonprofit, you are eligible to receive $10,000 in in-kind Google Ads advertising every month. Your organization must be verified as a nonprofit organization by TechSoup or the local TechSoup partner. Governmental entities and organizations, hospitals and medical groups, schools, academic institutions and universities are not eligible for Google for Nonprofits, but philanthropic arms of educational institutions are eligible. 

There are a few conditions Google places on participants’ advertising: 

  • Ads placed through the Ad Grants program must be entirely text-based (no videos or images).  
  • Ads appearing through the Ad Grants program will appear only on Google search results pages, in positions below the ads of paying advertisers. 

Tucker/Hall can work with you to conduct keyword research and ensure you are getting the most out of your Ad Grant. Optimizing your keywords is crucial to your participation in the Ad Grant program, because Ad Grants accounts must maintain a five percent click-through rate (CTR) each month (at the account level, not necessarily each keyword). If the CTR requirement isn’t met for two consecutive months, your account will be temporarily deactivated.  

In order to ensure that their Ad Grants drive meaningful impact, Google also requires participating organizations to have conversion tracking set up following tailored requirements intended to suit the needs of nonprofits. Conversion goals may look a bit different in the nonprofit sector compared to a business, but the analytics tool is adaptable: whether you are trying to drive donations, membership registrations, volunteer sign-ups, new membership form completions, or other types of engagement on your website, there is likely to be a conversion goal to match your needs.  

Contact Tucker/Hall today if you think you may be eligible for a Google Ad Grant and let us help you adapt your communications plan to incorporate this useful tool. 

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