Create briefs that empower agency partners and level up your campaigns. Download our Ebook here →

Case Study

More Money = More Impact: GenUnity’s Journey to Financial Independence

by Paul David “PDP”, Co-Founder & CEO

Case Study Highlights

Through fractional CMO support we helped GenUnity work towards a more self-sustaining business model to drive greater social impact.




Program Page Traffic


Website Traffic

The Challenge

Building a self-sustaining nonprofit

Most nonprofits rely on donations and fundraising to keep their operations running, but GenUnity — an organization that works to bring about community-led transformation in the areas of health and housing equity in Boston — came to us with a different quest: to become a self-sustaining nonprofit.

The GenUnity team aspired to get to a place where they no longer rely on donations and instead create a business model that covers all the organization’s costs. 

However, this was an ambitious ask given the complexity of GenUnity’s work, which is not easy to understand for those not embedded in the world of nonprofits and social justice. 

Fortunately, Literal Humans’ CEO, Paul David, has a background in social justice nonprofits and was able to help the team navigate this complicated terrain throughout the engagement.

Adding to the complexity was the business model itself: to become sustainable, GenUnity needed to persuade people that wanted to take part in its programs to secure $10,000 in sponsorship either from their employers or through Commonwealth Corporation (ComCorp) eligibility. 

ComCorp companies can fund their employees’ participation in the programs and then recuperate all costs from ComCorp, a government organization in Massachusetts.

What’s brilliant about GenUnity’s program — which brings together diverse groups of Bostonians to discuss solutions to the problems of health and housing inequity — is its uniqueness. 

However, clearly communicating this unique value proposition around such dense social issues was a challenge. GenUnity needed a website that would clearly explain what they do and a content and social media strategy that would raise awareness and drive new sign-ups. 

In early 2023, Literal Humans stepped in to help them, with an initial focus on creating a website that would convert new cohort members and a social media strategy that would move prospects down the funnel, helping to create a pipeline that would make the organization sustainable.

Here’s what we did. 

The Solution

The beginning

The partnership began with the usual audits to assess what was working and what wasn’t and devise a strategy from there. This included social and website audits, as well as a general audit of the organization’s digital presence.

As part of this process, we flagged sections of the website that needed to be added, and over the course of a year, we have written, designed, and published those pages.

For instance, we created individual pages for the nonprofit’s health and housing programs, contributing to a better user experience and conversion rate. For each page we created, we levelled up page designs in terms of UX, SEO, and CRO.

For example, on the new Housing program page, we added a call-out box for a video case study embedded on the page with past cohort members talking about their experience, quotes and testimonials from partners and members, the program overview and schedule, and a downloadable version of a White Paper we co-created with GenUnity that breaks down the issues they are trying to solve.

We also created an “Apply” page URL to better track the traffic that’s converting and provide a central landing page for all marketing CTAs — providing GenUnity with true conversion metrics for the first time — and improved the site’s SEO through a number of on page and off page tweaks to copy, internal linking, and technical aspects of the website. 

Through this process, we took GenUnity’s website from one that wasn’t really fit for purpose to a demand gen driver at scale optimized for the long-term conversion of cohort members, partners, and sponsorship.

Our Work


At Literal Humans, we don’t just design and implement strategies that work — we teach our clients how to replicate them, and that’s exactly what we did with GenUnity, providing training around social media, cold outreach, data analytics, the Google Ad Grant, and newsletter best practices so they could level up their marketing and sales funnel.

Social Media

Throughout the past year, we’ve trained GenUnity’s social media manager, Alexa, on social media strategy, leading to a noticeable improvement in the organization’s social media engagement. We also reviewed the content calendars she put together, providing feedback, and advice. 

GenUnity’s Instagram and LinkedIn presence is now visually coherent and professional-looking, sharing members’ transformation stories, highlighting hard-hitting facts about inequity in Boston, and spreading the word about upcoming programs and events.


Since GenUnity’s business model is more similar to that of a private company than a traditional nonprofit, the team needed to upskill in a core business practice — outreach. 

We provided training for the wider team on how to do cold outreach properly via email and LinkedIn, including:

  • How to build prospect lists
  • How to create outreach messages that aren’t salesy and get a response
  • How to track their outreach efforts
  • How to leverage their CRM and ‘warm’ contacts to drive lifetime value, referrals, and an ‘always on’ recruitment process.

This work has had a significant impact on program applications, and GenUnity has gone from only recruiting a handful of people with their cold outreach to landing 60–70 qualified prospects for each cohort.

Our Work

Content marketing

To help GenUnity get the word out about the impact of its work and encourage more Bostonians to join its programs, we created premium content assets that the team could use for outreach and that would also live on the website to drive more conversions. 

These assets include video case studies and white papers discussing housing and health equity in Boston, highlighting the challenges that residents face, the work community organizations are doing to solve them, and GenUnity’s role in the social justice ecosystem in Boston.

Additionally, we supported GenUnity through the process of applying for and setting up a Google Ad Grant, helping them leverage the $10,000/month of free ad credits to drive traffic to the newly-spruced-up website and get eyes on the freshly created content. 

The Result

Double the cohort applicants

Since partnering with Literal Humans, GenUnity has managed to double the number of applicants to its programs. 

A quick look at the data shows how the fresh new website is helping drive traffic to the ‘Apply’ and ‘Health Program’ pages, both of which have seen a 100% increase in traffic over the last year:

In the run-up to the latest cohort program (roughly a three-month period), there has been a noticeable increase in website traffic, application page views, program landing page visits, clicks, and impressions. 

For instance, clicks and impressions have increased by 37% and 24%, respectively, while the number of users has grown by 25%, reflecting the increased interest in the nonprofit’s work, and the easier user journeys the website now offers for application. 

By working with GenUnity to evolve is business model and size, we have not only driven some fantastic results — we have set the nonprofit up for sustainable success by empowering the internal team to replicate sales and marketing best practices.

The organization has even hired more team members to handle this growth, and with the infrastructure, tools, and systems we have helped them put in place, 70+ members and $200,000 will be the norm for future cohorts. 

In fact, GenUnity has now attracted enough interest to begin planning to run two cohorts at the same time — and we’ll continue to support them every step of the way.

The Result

Build a sustainable nonprofit with Literal Humans

Our partnership with GenUnity demonstrates the transformative power of strategic marketing in the nonprofit sector. 

By equipping GenUnity with the tools, strategies, and training necessary for self-sustainability, we helped them double their cohort members and revenue and set a strong foundation for their continued growth and success. 

If you’re looking to transform your nonprofit into a self-sustaining entity, look no further. Literal Humans is here to guide you every step of the way with custom-built marketing solutions tailored to your needs. 

Book a strategy session with us to discuss how to build a sustainable future for your organization.

Let’s level up your content marketing.

Schedule a strategy session

Spread the love: