Many non-profit organizations might believe they legally must stay away from politics. However, that is far from the truth. In fact, smart 501c-3 nonprofits can play a critical role in elections. There are, of course, legal restrictions but we wanted to share some work we have done for our 501c-3 clients.
Over the years we’ve helped many c-3 groups strategically use their resources to communicate with voters. C-3 groups have a critical resource advantage when it comes to communicating to voters because they can use the non-profit postage rate – a savings of 10 cents per piece. This cost savings isn’t captured by any other medium or organization.
Labor unions can use their non-profit postage stamp when communicating to their members, even when doing express advocacy. We suggest that every union have a member-mail program. This piece from the New Jersey Education Association was sent to 20,000 member-households in New Jersey’s 3rd Congressional District. Congressman Andy Kim won this election by fewer than 4,000 votes.
Every state Democratic and Republican party has the ability to produce pieces that qualify for their non-profit postage permit. We’ve seen some state parties use this ability to fully coordinate with candidates to great effect, saving candidate campaigns a ton of money.
501c-3 non-profit organizations can – and do – play a huge role in voter turnout and registration. Here is a piece from the Washington Environmental Council.
Ballot initiatives are another great way for non-profits to engage in the political space. This piece from the Colorado Civic Engagement Roundtable advocates for passing Amendment 65, an anti-Citizens United proposition.
At CN4, we have decades of experience advising clients of all types on how to accomplish their goals using the tools at their disposal. Let us know what you’re thinking about because we are thinking about young voter registration drives (using postage-paid returns), social pressure advertising to ensure communities of interest are engaged, in-language communications, member-mail and so much more! Let’s work together and build an effective program. Give me a call at (281) 989-7353 or email me (Michael@CN4Partners.com) to set up a time to connect.