Due to the spread of Covid-19, many organizations and nonprofits have limited ways of fundraising in person, making online fundraising more necessary than ever. Yearly fundraising events have been canceled, but needs are still present. Meanwhile, people are spending more time online surfing the internet, liking and sharing social media posts, and taking part in virtual communities. The uptick of time spent online is an opportunity for charities and non-profits to reach more audiences and supporters.
Gaining support through online fundraising has great potential, but if you don’t have an effective online fundraising strategy, your efforts can fall short. Donor360 is committed to helping you achieve your fundraising goals for serving the greater good! Read on for our tips on improving your online fundraising strategy.
1. Go Social
Your social media channels like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are where you can showcase your brand through hashtags, captions, images, videos, and more. Your social strategy should be thoughtfully considered and planned out depending on your organization’s goals, as it will be a powerful communicator of your organization’s values. A presence on social media allows your supporters to like and share your posts, which helps to spread your brand and message organically. A few tips for your social media strategy are:
- Post frequently—ideally once a day. However, do not overwhelm your audience with too much information or irrelevant content.
- Post relevant, creative, and intriguing content.
- Know your audience (age, gender, interests, etc.)
- Be consistently active—engage with similar accounts and supporters through following and commenting on their accounts.
- Keep track of your analytics to optimize your channel.
- Utilize hashtags.
Social media platforms are a great way to remind your supporters why donating is important and where their donations are going. Remember to make it simple for your visitors to locate your online profiles using social media icons on your webpages.
2. Strengthen Campaigns through Storytelling
Storytelling is a critical aspect in gaining support. As humans, we connect to stories that provoke emotion and empathy. This will humanize your brand and spark interest in supporters. It will show that your supporters' donations are not just a transaction, but a tangible way to make a change in the world.
For example, if your organization rescues animals, use a campaign to illustrate one of the animal’s stories from when they were first rescued to when they found a home. Incorporate testimonials, videos, and images to strengthen this storytelling. You can do the same thing with a story of an individual who your organization impacted.
3. Illustrate your Mission Statement, Vision, and Values
People want to know what they are supporting when they donate to an organization. If someone is just learning about your organization through an online campaign, your goal is to answer any questions supporters might have—who, what, and why right from your campaign page. Present these elements explicitly, and you will be able to utilize them in your storytelling. Details and clarity are important here, and including your mission statement, vision, and values will help build your brand overall.
4. Drive Donations with Goals & Real-time Updates
Real-time progress graphics that show your fundraising goal and how much you’ve raised so far will promote real-time engagement. By providing real-time updates, you will not only show that your organization is trustworthy, but you will also trigger powerful psychological triggers in your donors. This study showed that ‘driving towards a goal’ garners a higher amount of donations than asking for donations without a specific goal in mind.
Furthermore, ‘goal proximity’ will help drive more donations as you get closer to your goal. Studies have shown that donors will give more often when a fundraiser is closer to achieving its goal. This means that in the beginning your donations will be harder earned, but as you start to build momentum, your donations will come faster and easier!
Donor360 campaign pages automatically include goal progress bars that show real-time giving updates. This will help your organization be transparent and earn higher rates of donation.
5. Utilize Social Proof
Due to the ‘bandwagon effect,’ people are more likely to give when they see that others have. When you incorporate a live donation feed board with comments, visitors will be able to see when someone else donates. This provides social proof, which will help others see that your organization is worth donating to and help build a sense of community among your donors. People love to feel like they are a part of something and by recognizing each of your donors with a live feed update, you can include them in your efforts publicly.
With Donor360 live campaign feeds, your donors will be able to see who has given recently. They will also have the option to comment on the feed, which builds an even stronger sense of community engagement.
6. Increase Giving by Including Levels of Donation
Instead of leaving a blank space to fill in a donation amount, including preset donation amounts. This can help influence your donor to give a higher amount or add an additional donation to a purchase. By setting benchmarks, you will help steer your donor towards the donation amount you are looking for. In general, you want the highest donation amount to be a bit higher than your biggest donations historically. Displaying a range of donation amounts will help your donors to quickly decide what they want to give. Donor360 campaigns have preset amounts for donations at checkout to maximize your contributions.
7. Follow-up with Supporters
Following up with your supporters after your campaign’s completion is crucial for transparency and continued support. You can continue engaging your donors by providing progress updates after-the-fact, pertaining to the progress of the project that they helped fund. This will also strengthen your organization’s trustworthiness.
There are various ways you can inform your supporters. Newsletters and blogs can be implemented regularly to spread information relevant to your campaign and cause. It’s important to link to your website and other pages where supporters can continue to engage and learn. Your donors and supporters will want to know where their donations are going. Following up with your organization’s progress gives donors insight into how exactly they’ve helped and will increase your chances of receiving more support from them later.
8. Leverage Your Network to Grow Your Reach
After you’ve completed one round of fundraising and grown your connections, you can utilize this network. Ask your supporters to start fundraisers on your behalf in order to passively build awareness and financial support for your organization. Using a platform like Donor360 makes this easy. With Donor360’s widget, you can preconfigure fundraisers that your supporters can start with just a few clicks. Display your ‘Start Fundraiser’ button on your website, send a link in follow-up emails, or in monthly newsletters.
Make a Plan and Get Started
Take time to plan your next campaign using these aforementioned online fundraising strategies. Know your goals and have a plan to reach them before you launch your fundraiser. These strategies will help you build a comprehensive fundraising plan that will be unstoppable!.
With Donor360, you can create an accessible campaign with real-time transparency. Sign up here to start your first fundraiser with Donor360! Need help optimizing your campaign? Get in touch with our Fundraising Ambassador, Kristen, at email@example.com.