On May 13 and 17, almost two dozen nonprofit owners and managers attended workshops led by an Indiana University Northwest expert. They learned about traditional media and social media tools to better market their organizations.
Subir Bandyopadhyay, a professor of marketing at IU Northwest’s School of Business and Economics, organized workshops titled “Bringing For-profit Marketing Tools to Nonprofits” on the IU Northwest campus in Gary and at Ivy Tech Community College in East Chicago. He had three objectives for participants: to outline challenges in attracting donors and volunteers; to develop cost-effective social media strategies; and to explore cost-efficient and effective media options to identify, inform and persuade potential donors and volunteers.
Bandyopadhyay said nonprofit organizations in northwest Indiana play a major role in providing social and health care services in the region.
“Unfortunately, most of them lack financial, technological and human resources,” Bandyopadhyay said. “It is critical, therefore, to provide support in these areas to help them succeed in their endeavors.”
Riley Egan, events and outreach associate at Food Bank of Northwest Indiana, attended the workshop at Ivy Tech. The Food Bank distributes more than 4.5 million meals each year to hungry children, adults and seniors across Lake and Porter counties. Egan said it utilizes a lot of the resources discussed in the workshop.
“It was nice to have confirmation that we are headed in the right direction. In addition, it was nice to listen to other nonprofit professionals discuss what challenges they face and how to overcome them,” Egan said. “The Food Bank relies on the generosity and knowledge of many partners within the community. We greatly appreciate our continued partnership with IU Northwest.”
Bandyopadhyay received a $2,200 award from the Regional Economic Development Fund to organize the workshops. The RED Fund is managed by the IU Council for Regional Engagement and Economic Development, or CREED; Bandyopadhyay represents IU Northwest on the council.