5 Ways to Use Social Media to Drive Your Fundraising Efforts
When raising money for a charity or nonprofit organization, do you use social media to support your fundraising goals? If you do, are you getting the most out of how you use it? Social media is a powerful way to connect with potential donors, engage others so they feel involved with what you are doing, and promote your fundraising efforts to greater success.
Over the last 5 years, I participated in the Pan Mass Challenge, raising an average of $5,456 per year and a grand total of $27,280. Every single year that I participated in this ride, at least 85% of my fundraising came through Social Media – specifically, Facebook. Though the type of fundraising I have in mind is through a sports-oriented event, the following list can be applied to any fundraising work.
Here are 5 ways that you can use Social Media to drive your fundraising efforts:
1. Launch your fundraising challenge. Announce the challenge to let potential donors know what the challenge is and that it has begun. Make the launch of your fundraising challenge a big deal and leverage it to start your online campaign. (In other words, start as soon as you sign up even if the culminating event is months away.) Some donors like to get in on the ground floor; Give them that opportunity by letting them know that you are launching your challenge.
2. Thank your donors. Write a brief social media post thanking individuals who donated to your cause. Be sure to "tag" the people you are thanking so that they get notified about your message. Different people donated all at once? Don’t think everyone all at the same time! Rather, space them out over hours or even days.
3. Post updates about your fundraising progress. This helps keep you and your readers focused on your goal. It’s an opportunity to do a general thank you, or to express concern that time is ticking down and there’s still so much more to go.
4. Educate your readers about your cause. Who does it serve? What does it support or enable? What has the organization accomplished in the past? What, specifically, will the money you are raising go towards? Tell your potential donors about the impact that their donation can have!
5. Post pictures. Are you hosting (or attending) a fundraiser? Do you spend lots of time training for the event? Did you get a t-shirt? Are you hanging out with other people who are also involved? These are all opportunities for posting pictures!! Seeing what you are up to gives your readers a more tangible impression of what you are doing and what they are donating towards. Be sure to "tag" anyone in the photos with you, which will expand the reach of your message.
Of course, you should not tie your entire fundraising effort to social media. Nothing beats reaching out personally by email or phone, and thank you cards are always better than thank you emails. That being said… engaging social media fully throughout the duration of your fundraising window can give you better reach, a louder voice, and also help you feel supported by those who respond back online in addition to the donations they send you.
Re: 5 Ways to Use Social Media to Drive Your Fundraising Efforts
Hi Susan- great post! We've been fundraising latley and found that it's a nice way for us to make our business and ourselves as a team appear more human- providing updates, pictures of us all getting involved in different ways etc adds a more human element to it all! It works far better and gets far more engagement than a newsletter update etc would probably ever achieve!
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