In one year alone, Americans donated over $471 billion to nonprofit organizations. This money is used to fund charitable initiatives, community improvements, and a range of other worthwhile causes. Despite this impressive figure, though, many nonprofits continue to struggle with a lack of funding. Grants and donors often cover only a fraction of an organization’s operating costs such as staffing, nonprofit insurance, and outreach. Soliciting donations is always a challenge, so what are fundraising best practices for nonprofits? If you’re wondering how to create a nonprofit fundraising strategy, check out the following four tips that can be used for fundraising in the age of social media.
Social Media Direct Ask
One of the most common methods of fundraising is the so-called “direct ask.” This strategy is commonly employed via social media, wherein a supporter directly requests that followers donate to their charity of choice. This request may coincide with the poster’s birthday or another special event that they use to ask for donations. Though this can be a somewhat successful endeavor, it often isn’t the most effective way to garner substantial returns. People can easily scroll past the post and forget it — and most will. There are more effective ways to get potential donors’ attention.
Tagging and Thanking
Though charitable giving is an inherently altruistic act, people are still inclined to appreciate acknowledgment, and that’s what makes the tagging and thanking approach so successful. The tag and thank method does exactly what it sounds like — it involves tagging friends who have donated and thanking them directly for their support. If you plan on using this approach, you should always get donors’ consent before publicly naming and thanking them — but few will say no. After seeing others publicly tagged and thanked, you’ll likely find that more friends will be inclined to donate, too.
Sharing the Funding Story
People appreciate acknowledgment, and they also appreciate knowing where their money is going. Have you ever donated to a charity and wondered where exactly every dollar was spent? This level of detail typically isn’t feasible to offer, but prospective donors will still be lured by an in-depth account of the difference their money can make. It’s even more effective if the account comes in the form of a narrative. People are naturally drawn to stories, and an engaging story is likely to garner the attention and donations you’re looking for.
Incentivizing With Gifts
Recognition and stories are great, but sometimes people want something tangible in exchange for their donation. This is one reason why gifts are such an effective motivator for charitable giving. Gifts should be small enough that their cost does not offset the value of the donation, and they should be meaningful to the recipient.
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