Does anyone remember getting a knock at their front door, opening it, and already being neck deep in a fundraising pitch? While that may have been...sort of effective, now there’s the internet. If your nonprofit tried to do something like that today, your volunteers would have a lot of door slamming nightmares to work through. However, fundraising is the backbone of nonprofits and sometimes it feels like technology is ruining that. Constantly vying for the attention and appealing to the humanity of other people to help support worthy causes around the world. However, it’s not enough to bury your heads in the sand and hope that technology will run its course. Technology influences culture which influences people. In order for your nonprofit to thrive, you must use the new resources at your disposal to assimilate into culture. Here’s how you can leverage new tech to increase your fundraising potential.
Back in January, the Human Rights Campaign set a goal to raise 100k. In two months’ time, they had exceeded their goal by 30%. How did they do this? GoFundMe.com. Crowdsourcing sites like GoFundMe and Kickstarter have paved the way for individual people to reach out for help. However, nonprofits can benefit from this a great deal. By putting your cause on these platforms, you’re increasing your shareability and opening yourself up to new donors that wouldn’t have found you otherwise. Crowdsourcing gives nonprofits a front row seat to the world.
You may roll your eyes at the 14-year-old who has 18 million followers by playing video games but he’s actually the future of marketing. A growing trend with organizations is something called influencer marketing. What that means is partnering with people online with large followings to help promote you. This has the ability to translate into fundraising if you tap the right people to help. A great example of this is Comic Relief. They recently recruited prominent Youtube stars to “Red Out” their channels to raise awareness about the hardships of young people around the world and tell them how to donate.
So you finally got everyone to donate! Congrats and well done. However, it’s important that you keep up with engaging these new people that now know you exist. Technology has provided a great way for you to put away that excel spreadsheet of names and phone numbers. Through a CRM (Constituent Relationship Management) platform like Bloomerang or Salesforce, you can get a full picture of everything your donor has done with you. No more guessing who this person is and whether you met them at an event last year or the year before. It’s all detailed in the profile of them. So when you reach out to Alexa after a campaign, you can thank her not only for donating but invite her to the next event you have because she’s been to three in the past year.
Above all else, fundraising is about your story. That has not and will not change. Before you start signing up for every website that will help you bring in money, start instead by sitting down and making sure you’re telling your story right. Get to the heart of your cause and let it speak to the people that you’re asking to support. While technology constantly shifts, just remember that there are still people behind every device and they can be reached! You just have to shift your strategy.
If you have any questions or new ideas on fundraising efforts that we can share, let us know! Send in a comment, reach out on social media or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.