If you are an established non-profit, you’re most likely aware that Google gives away advertising every month. Through Google Grants, non-profits can receive up to $10,000 per month in AdWords text ads. If you really work the program you can apply for the GrantsPro program, which offers a $40,000 per month budget. That’s a lot of exposure with only the cost of managing the program as an expense.
Is Google doing this because they’re a socially conscious organization that wants to further the goals of non-profit organizations? Maybe. Are they doing it for the goodwill it generates? Possibly. Does the increased competition for keywords drive up average bid cost to Google’s benefit? Probably. Do they use it for a gigantic tax write off? Definitely.
But just because Google’s benefitting does not mean you shouldn’t too. If you haven’t already applied for a Google Grant, here’s what you need to know:
- You must hold a valid charity status in your country – in the US that means you have 501(c)(3) status
- You may not be a government entity or organization, hospital or health care organization or school, childcare center, academic institution or university
- You must have a website to link to the ads
- You must manage ads on a monthly basis, at minimum
- Any part of the budget not spent during the month does not carry over to the next month
If you’re already running a successful Google Grants campaign you might qualify for the GrantsPro program which would increase your budget to $40,000 per month. To qualify you must:
- Have conversion tracking installed and be tracking a qualified event such as form completion, not just tracking visits to the home page
- Spend $9,900 USD or more per month for at least two months in the last six months
- Maintain an average click through rate (CTR) of 1% or higher over the past 6 months
- Manage the account bi-weekly, at minimum
- Complete the annual survey and agree to share data with Google
For small non-profits, managing a Google Grant or GrantsPro program can seem overwhelming, especially if your only experience with AdWords is seeing them when doing a search. We’ve used Google Grants to bring added exposure to our non-profit clients, and can help you craft and manage a digital marketing plan so your organization can do the same.