Embracing Complexity, Inspiring Clarity: Crafting Core Messaging for Nonprofit Organizations


Another common expression here at Liminal Creative is, “Own the complexity, pass on clarity.”

Nonprofit organizations are doing some of the most complex work in the world. These organizations are working every day to offer solutions to the world’s most challenging problems — issues like extreme poverty, hunger, systemic racism, trauma, human trafficking, and violence. The list goes on.

There are layers and layers of complexity to this kind of work — things that the leaders of these organizations understand in ways that we can only imagine.

If you’re leading a nonprofit organization, we can imagine how tempting it is to try to fully inform donors on the intricacies of what it takes to move your mission forward. There is a time to share a certain level of detail, but too much information can often leave people feeling overwhelmed and helpless — making it harder for them to understand what your organization actually does.

This is why we work with nonprofit leaders to help them own the complexity of their work and to create core messaging that provides everyone with a smooth “on-ramp” as they seek to understand what your organization is all about.

It is much like parents and their children. As a father of four boys, I (Todd) don’t concern my kids with all of the details necessary to run our house. As they get older, it becomes our responsibility to help them understand some of these things. But, for the most part, our job as parents is to own all of the complexity and help them flourish.

As donors become more and more involved in your work, more detailed information becomes important. But when they first encounter your organization, they simply need to have a basic understanding of what you do.

Our custom Brand Strategy Process is built to do this very thing. We work with you to clarify your brand voice and core messaging so that potential donors quickly gain a clear understanding of your work — your vision, your mission, the problems you are seeking to solve, the way you go about addressing them, and how they can get involved.

We’d love to help you in this way — it’s the foundation of our work. Reach out if you have any questions, if you’re interested in learning more, or you just want to say “hi.” 🙂

For the sake of clarity,

Bill & Todd

Todd Hiestand

Todd has over 20 years of experience as a leader in the nonprofit sector. He has served in a wide variety of roles, guiding digital marketing, technology, fundraising, eCommerce, and communications strategies. His expertise in developing systems and processes has helped launch organizations and sustain growth over time.