Skip to main content

19 tips for a successful nonprofit crowdfunding campaign

Tricks and best practices to achieve a desired goal with your crowdfunding campaign.

Crowdfunding is a solution that involves financing a cause by engaging the general public through specialized Internet platforms. To be successful, a crowdfunding campaign requires a great deal of communication and energy, especially if the collection goal is high.

Here are 19 tips for a successful crowdfunding campaign for nonprofits.

TIP 1: Presenting a project like no other

To succeed, you must first present a project as different from others.

To attract attention, even to provoke astonishment or admiration, we need a project like no other, a project that leaves the beaten track because it shifted, new, creative, innovative, artistic, innovative, or even human and visionary.

TIP 2: Presenting a credible project

Innovate, trigger wonder or admiration, certainly. But your project must remain credible. The goal is to raise funds to make the project concrete and viable.

To reassure donors about the credibility of the project, there’s only one solution: pedagogy. The first step is to explain the project with simple words, words that an 8 – year – old child could understand: what is and why, who is, where, and how? Remember that the best ideas are the simplest!

TIP 3: Illustrate your project with photos and videos

Photos and videos are of utmost importance in a crowdfunding operation. The potential donor likes to visualize the concept: to see the project promoters, to understand the issue, to put realities into words.

The photos and videos are all proof of the credibility of the project. They help bring the potential donor directly into the project. Focus on dynamic, rather than static, photos or videos: concrete scenarios are more meaningful than portraits or group photos.

TIP 4: Do not start the campaign too early

Starting a crowdfunding campaign at the very beginning of a project is not a good idea. Indeed, you may not have anything concrete to show and you will not be able to present any proof of your seriousness and ability to move from idea to reality.

It would be ideal to start building a support group before the launch of the campaign, for example by organizing an event, the donations will take off faster.

TIP 5: Choosing the Right Crowdfunding Platform

Choose the crowdfunding platform that best suits your project. For faith based organizations, small nonprofits and educational institutes, platforms like GiveCentral are well adapted.

The most well-known platforms will attract more donations, with more members and the fact that the donor will trust a platform he has already heard about.

Some platforms can also be used to collect donations from different countries in different languages, which can sometimes be interesting.

TIP 6: Do not hesitate to take ‘inspiration’ from the right projects

Survey similar projects on various crowdfunding platforms and note what you like, which catches your eye and piques your curiosity. Find the right hooks, the right arguments. Study how to describe a project. Donate money and study the project from the inside and see how the nonprofits organizations are communicating with their contributors.

TIP 7: Understand the motivations of different types of donors

Donors can be categorized into different categories, with motivations sometimes very remote:

Some donors favor the quality of presentation and project credibility ,

Others are concerned with the spirit or objective of the project and compare them with their own values ​​(humanism, mutual aid, solidarity, education, self-fulfillment, entrepreneurship, innovation);

Others want to understand the approach of project leaders and focus on people, perhaps with the desire to be part of the group,

Others give because they know the project bearers from near or far,

Finally some simply give to get a tax receipt and lower their taxes.

Ask yourself what the typical profile of your donors is based on the nature of your project, and adapt your speech!

TIP 8: Taking into account the importance of social networks

Crowdfunding increases to 90% via the Internet, about 50% of which flows from Facebook. It is therefore essential to be present on the social networks to make take off his campaign of crowdfunding.

First of all, create a Facebook page, invite your friends and feed it like a blog. Interact on the most influential Facebook groups in your city or theme to introduce yourself, ask questions and finally launch and animate the campaign.

TIP 9: Using Press Relays and Bloggers

Here the goal is to find prescribers: journalists or bloggers who will talk about you, write a text or an article on your initiative and especially give their opinion. All this is excellent for your visibility and your credibility, because the more a message is repeated and relayed by people recognized for their status, the better it passes.

TIP 10: Defining a Realistic Gift Objective

The target amount of collection must be realistic. If you set a goal that is too high, your crowdfunding campaign may run low in the second or third week. Set a collection goal that mostly matches your investment in time to liven up the campaign. If you think you can mobilize a large number of relays and activate influencers, if you are surrounded and helped on a daily basis, if you have time to meet journalists, bloggers, institutions and patrons, then set a donation target high!

TIP 11: Defining the right duration and the right period

The duration of the campaign (from 30 to 90 days) is a sensitive issue.

To make a campaign too long is to take the risk of losing interest. To make a campaign too short is to risk missing a number of contributions.

The dates of the beginning and the end of the campaign are also important: attention to the school holidays, parties …

TIP 12: Offer an alternative to online payment

There might be a percentage of people who do not wish to pay on the internet or who are uncomfortable with the “technique” of online payment. Do not miss out on these gifts: give contributors the opportunity to donate by check, wire transfer, or cash. Be clear about the terms and conditions: check sending address, order, etc.

TIP 13: Successfully launch the campaign

At launch, you have to communicate strongly, at a favorable time, that is, a moment when people are at their computers and ready to “listen”. Good communication will first go through an e-mailing and Facebook.

Start by reaching out to your immediate surroundings with personalized emails. That means an e-mail per person, without turning around the bush. Above all, try to turn each of your friends into an active relay.

The goal is to go beyond the limits of its own network.

TIP 14: Communicate, communicate, and communicate

Making a great communication campaign at the launch of crowdfunding is fine. But continuing the communication campaign throughout the operation is better.

You will have to continually provide evidence of the credibility of your project and your motivation. This is how you will convince the hesitant.

Send messages, photos, continue feeding your Facebook page. Give news and joy, even if your campaign stagnates.

Thank the donors, even the small ones. Show them that they are part of the team and they will become your best commercial. Give others the desire to join them.

Set a new intermediate target, a new threshold to be reached.

Adopt a positive communication, show that you will get there!

TIP 15: Suggest suitable counterparties

Crowdfunding most often works as a gift versus gift, that is, with rewards or “counterparts” . The rewards are not going to be of interest to all donors, some will not even claim them. But they may appeal to some small donors, or they may encourage some contributors to donate more.

Take care of the quality of the donations, and adapt them to the spirit of the project: propose surprise gifts for example.

TIP 16: Do not lower your arms

A crowdfunding campaign is an endurance race: the mind counts as much as the legs. You always have to believe, always raise. As long as the deadline is not reached, success is possible. Do not hesitate to reach out to your network more than once.

TIP 17: Managing the last straight

The last three days must be the occasion of a great communication operation: re-launch and motivate for the one last time, all your contacts.

TIP 18: Do not hesitate to complete the donations yourself to achieve the goal

If the goal is not achieved, the trick is to supplement the amount yourself by making a donation. This will validate the success of the operation.

Tip 19: Plan to spend enough time

This is the last advice, but the basic advice, which summarizes everything: if you want to succeed in your crowdfunding campaign you will have to invest a lot of time. So choose a period when you are available to see the project through.

How To Evaluate Your Online Giving Solutions

Every year we get a little close to going digital. Just think of it – media is digital, cameras are digital and so is the retail. According to the most recent survey by the Giving Institute more and more donors give online. So, it is important for churches to adapt to these changes too and give their members the option of .

Online payment process

As you think giving an online options for your donors try these three electronic payment types, see what your church members think:

  1. Through their credit card
  2. Electronic Fund Transfer for recurring donation
  3. Automated Clearing House

Evaluating an e-giving solution

As there are numerous programs that offer the service of online-giving, a church should be cautious as to what solution they choose for their congregation.

Here are a few points to remember as you choose the right program:

  1. The frequency of giving: Is the program able to give multiple options for fund transfers? Are there any schedules for recurring donations? The donor should be capable of linking their bank accounts for donation capability with weekly, biweekly or monthly automatic fund deduction capability. Donating frequently should be made easy.
  2. Easy to pledge options: Will the donor be able to pledge an amount for donation and then the payment for the pledge is scheduled over a certain period of time? Can the donor make a down payment on the pledge? Will he/she be able to make a down payment from one account and then charge the rest to another account?
  3. Confidentiality preference: Will a donor be able to remain anonymous?
  4. The process of transaction: What is the duration of the process of fund transfer? How much time does it take for the money to go from donor’s account to bank’s account? How much time does the application processing take these data? And what and how much fee is charged for the process?
  5. Security: Does the program comply with the guidelines of a safe transaction?
  6. PCI compliance
  7. 128-bit secure browser connection for safe data handling
  8. Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) for information encryption.
  9. End to end data management. Donor’s card details and account information should be discreet. There should be no third party involved in handling the fund transfer.
  10. Price: When buying any product or service the top concern is the cost. Many service providers give unrealistic promises of the increase in the number of online participants in given number of year. But such predictions hardly meet their promise and are very misleading. Much of their charging fees is unexpected and can greatly hamper the collection capability of a church. Fees that are related to the size of the church or factors like how many already are giving and how many will readily switch to online giving, all these matters greatly when you are choosing a software solution. Hidden fees can bury the church in expenses that will make the service exorbitant.
  11. Advertising: Will the vendor also provide the service of promotion? Often the staff at church is not ready to encourage people to donate beyond the walls of the church. So asking the church members to become interested in the new online giving method will require some assistance. You will need a service provider who will help in launching and promoting the program. Many a time the participation in online giving can see a sudden spike but then slows and falls down gradually. The program should be capable analyse giving habits and advise long-term strategies for donation collection.

Online giving should be promoted in every way possible even to members who aren’t that frequent to church. Promoting online giving can be a hard task if the attendance lays low throughout the year. Integration with any social platform can greatly boost exposure of the new giving habit to other members. Attracting potential donors has to be a constant effort. It is imperative to look into expenses of these promotions before you decide on a service provider.

  1. Information: Will the reports of online contribution be available, and in what form? Will the integration of information be automated to enable transfer of data to donation management software? An efficient bookkeeper tracks the donor by funds donated to measure the effective way of using a program. But if the data handling is too complicated a person can falter and margin of error becomes bigger. Also, it shouldn’t be too overwhelming so as to teach a new staff member. The service provider should offer teaching tools and train to help the church staff in organizing data in the most efficient way.
  2. Updates: The vendor should provide frequent updates to keep pace with the changing habits of the donors and to sync with the collection strategies of the churches. The program should be up-to-date and have the most contemporary functionalities. If the application for mobile phones is available then it should provide flexible payment methods and easy donation process. As more people are using smartphones these days, online finance option is now steadily being used by people. Every detail ranging from likeability and functionality of the application to the security provided should be updated as frequently as possible to adhere to changes in need and demand. This will help in maximizing participation in online giving.

Just like you would go to a store to get your groceries, so should you go online to reach your donors for charitable giving.  By going where your donors are you are increasing the likelihood of engaging them not just for that collection, but for recurring long-term charitable relationship. Online giving should be a top priority on your long list of things to do. But remember, we are here to help make your fundraising effort easier. Talk to us by leaving a comment below!

Easy Fundraising Ideas A to Z for your next event.

Often, the most challenging part of fundraising is coming up with creative ideas to motivate your supporters.  With these amazingly easy fundraising ideas we assure you’ll be off to a great start with your next event!

Easy Fundraising Ideas A to Z

easy fundraising ideas a to z

Related: 5 tips to find, motivate and keep Volunteers for Easy Fundraising Events | Facebook for Non-Profits: 10 tips for fundraising success

Make giving fun and exciting and ensure that you reach your goal with these creative ways to fund raise!

4 tips for Donor retention with Email Marketing.

Donor retention

We all have donors who no longer engage with us or haven’t made recent contributions. However, rather than seeking to acquire new donors, it is more productive to re-engage with these lapsed donors who are more likely to take action as they are already familiar with your organization and the processes. Here are some tips to help you succeed on this path.

Preventive strategies VS curative techniques

Organizations must seek to optimize donor experience and satisfaction by understanding their behavior. This is the best way to “hold” them, keep them active and limit the loss of donors. On the marketing front, this satisfaction requires a thorough personalization of the actions and operations undertaken. The goal is to offer your donors tools or services that really interest them.

Prevention is better than cure. But how do you begin to recover lapsed donors, once you have identified them? In this blog, we will discuss 4 innovative methods that will help you connect with lapsed donors again.

  1. Identify donors through segmentation

The first thing you need to do is to identify lapsed donors in your CRM by grouping them into a segment. This presupposes, of course, that you have a minimum of information about your donors and that you know their behaviors.

After consolidating these donors you can better align appeals based on donor interests.

  1. Know when to stop

You have to know, at some point, to draw a line on the donors who really do not react at all to your solicitations. Repeated recalls can quickly be perceived by donors as a form of unwanted invasion and may evoke resistance to appeals. It is important to respect their decision.

  1. Surprise to revitalize donors

Create messages your donors will love. Send them emails that are out of the ordinary. The idea is to try to be as inventive as possible without falling into provocation and exaggeration. Try to make your donor feel a sense of urgency and at the same time provoke a click.

  1. Offer your lapsed donors a satisfaction/opinion questionnaire

If your donors are not actively engaging with you, maybe they have good reasons. Is your process a hassle? Do you send too frequent emails? A donation route that they do not understand?

Your dormant donors probably have a lot to teach you. Questionnaires are always appreciated by donors. They feel valued because you show them that their opinion counts.

These techniques should not make you forget that the main goal is to actively engage donors in the future. For this, we will recommend that you place donor satisfaction at the heart of your marketing strategy.

Facebook for Non-Profits: 10 tips for fundraising success.

Facebook for Non-Profits: 10 tips for fundraising success

facebook fundraising success

More than one billion users around the world use Facebook daily. Is there a way to connect with people and form interest-based communities? Where are the volunteers and donors that support your cause located? Can your Facebook page help with your non-profit events? In this post we find out how to create a Facebook page that captures the interest of your community and effectively manage it for fundraising success.

Why register your non-profit events page on Facebook

  • Having a Facebook page is a must-have for and a non-profit that wants to be dynamic! It maintains a spirit of community by opening a two-way communication channel. You will be able to stay in touch with your members and solicit them. This page can even become a real meeting point.
  • Want to attract new donors, volunteers, or members? In addition to energizing your current community, you could also expand it with Facebook.

Defining the objectives of your Facebook page will help you to build your donor communication strategy.

How to create your page in a few clicks?

You must have a personal Facebook account to create a non-profit events or business page. Create an account or login, and visit this page: facebook.com/pages/create .

1st step:

Select ” Business, organization or institution “. Enter the name of your association, then choose ” Non-Profit Organization” from the drop-down list. Be sure to opt for periodic tips and tricks from Facebook for your page.

Create facebook page for non profit associations

2nd stage:

That’s it! Your page is created. Now you can set the information for your page. This page is the entry point for people who will discover your non-profit via Facebook, so think about it.

Facebook for fundraising success

  1. Start by adding a photo, which will usually be your logo.
  2. Then a cover photo, which appears at the top of your page. Use it well to convey your story. Please select a photo of good quality.
  3. Add a short description of your organization. Do not forget to add your website, which will be displayed on your Facebook page. Also customize the Facebook address or the username of your page or cause. For example, we have changed the generic URL in the address bar to https://www.facebook.com/givecentral/
  4. Add your page to your Facebook favorites. You will have easy access from your personal account.

Facebook marketing for non profits

3rd step:

As you scroll down your newly created page you will find a series of suggestions in a drop-down menu for you to explore and upload your post. What is the action you want people to take when they land on your page? It may be:

  • Make a donation
  • Registering for non-profit events
  • Create offers, and so on.

In general, try to complete your profile as much as possible: address, contact details, history with key milestones for your organization … The Facebook page has become the digital business card of any organization, including non-profits. It needs to be treated with maximum information from the start.

The 10 best practices of a good Facebook page for fundraising success are:

Tip # 1: Define your communication strategy

That is, your own identity. Ask yourself the right questions:

What information would my audience like to find? At what frequency? What tone to use? On what media? (Videos, photos, drawings, articles, interview …) What is the message to pass? (Gather, promote, advice, and share news …)

You can even give a survey on your members’ expectations before you get started.

Tip # 2: Grab attention

One of the keys to success on Facebook is to remain concise and inventive. You must be successful in distinguishing yourself from other publications.

Tip # 3: Keep up the pace

It is essential to publish frequently on Facebook, so that you are not forgotten. Do not fall into excess and find the right frequency for posting.

Tip # 4: Build bridges with your site

Remember to link your website and your Facebook page. In addition to winning visits from both sides, you will have better SEO.

When to post on Social Media for non profits

Tip # 5: Have a dedicated community manager

Managing a good Facebook page takes time.  Ideally you should have a dedicated community manager within your organization to specifically take care of this task. Young volunteers comfortable with social networks also make for a good choice. Just supervise by giving the right guidelines.

Tip # 6: Time your posts

Finally, consider publishing at the right time. There are more timely moments than others. Study your page monthly to find out when your audience is engaging with your posts using data from the Facebook insights.

What type of content to publish?

Tip # 7: Vary the content  

You have the option to upload videos, photos, articles, events, news, links, questions, content from another Facebook page… utilize them.

Tip # 8: Put your members to work

Encourage your members to interact with your community: ask them to participate in your non-profit events, sign petitions, react to a debate, and visit your site, for example.

Tip # 9: Behind the Scenes Stories

Internet users like to see what happens behind the scene, they will “like” the images of your volunteers at work preparing their actions.

Better less, but better!
Tip # 10: Publish Quality Content

You can write articles supporting your cause, or news about your associations. If you do not have the pen handy, you can also relay content related to your association.

You now have all the information to set up and effectively manage a Facebook page for fundraising success, it’s up to you to play!

donor experience

Managing Donor Experience: The 5 big challenges.

Managing donor experience is a relatively recent concept which has become key to our relational and marketing plans’ success.With all of the new technological advances competing for our donor’s attention,here are the 5 major challenges for small and large organizations this year.

# 1 The Rise of Mobile

Smartphones are taking over. Globally, 1.4 billion smartphones were sold in 2015, according to Gartner. Smartphones have revolutionized consumers’ habits and behaviour. This is undoubtedly one of the most striking phenomena of the decade.

The rate of the mobile usage keeps increasing from year to year. 2017 is no exception to the rule. Organizations that seek to optimize the user experience need to integrate this technology in their marketing and relational plans. Organizations should focus the coming year on improving the mobile donor experience. How?By proposing a mobile application, adapting the website to the mobile phone (responsive design), and using text messaging as a marketing channel.

# 2 Multichannel Intensification

The channels of communication have grown considerably in recent years, especially with the emergence of digital channels: email, sms, mobile application, chat, online questionnaires. Donors often use multiple channels to interact with the organization, and pass from one channel to another (from the mobile to the website, from the website to the physical point of transaction).This trend is expected to continue in 2017.

Organizations have to offer their donors a multichannel donor experience, that is to say:

  • Provide an optimal donor experience regardless of the channel used by the donor.
  • Provide fluidity in the passage from one channel to another, and thus the connection of the different channels. For example, the possibility of finding an offline charity event on the mobile application.

# 3 Combining the digital and physical: the rise of Phygital marketing

Organizations must not only offer more channels of interaction, but must also ensure that the various channels are properly integrated.There must be bridges between the different channels so that donors can switch from one to the other with ease.

There are two main families of channels: digital channels (online) and physical channels (offline). For some years now we have been seeing a blend of these two types.Some use the term “phygital” to describe this phenomenon.

# 4 Authenticity in donor relations

Donors appreciate organizations that listen to them. This includes the integration of social networks into the relationship strategy. Many organizations are hiring people to respond to demands on social networks (community managers).

# 5 Self-reliance

The human side of donor relations counts a lot, but donors also cherish their autonomy. They are increasingly enjoying the services that enable them to solve a simple problem on their own without the help of the organization. Why? Because the donor is looking to save time and minimize their efforts. The development of self-service tools is another 2017 trend of donor experience.

In the search for maximizing the donor experience, you have to keep in mind this seemingly contradictory aspect with the previous point. The principle is: let the donor do what they can do themselves, and concentrate the donor relations on the more complex actions or problems.

An example? Have a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on your website that answers the basic questions, or show them how to use the app via tutorials. This helps to manage your donor service, and improves your efficiency.

As an organization, it is essential that you are aware of these developments to differentiate yourself from the crowd and maintain a good level of donor satisfaction. These trends are not new but their importance will certainly increase in the months to come.

importance of mobile donation

WHY IS ACCEPTING ONLINE DONATIONS ESSENTIAL TODAY?

If you want to grow and reach as many people as possible, your presence on the internet is essential. The more you want to grow your organization, the greater your web presence should be Making a simple website, or having accounts on social networks are not enough.

The advancement of crowdfunding and ease of making online donations should allow you to put yourself forward, and raise funds. 

Here are some of the top reasons why you should collect online:

  • The Internet affects all generations

Don’t assume that your organization won’t have online giving adopters just because you have more elderly donors currently. People ages 65+ are the fastest adopters of the internet – many of them use Facebook, Facetime, and Skype to communicate with their grandchildren and family.

Several years ago, few people trusted entering their credit card numbers on the Internet. Today, thanks to all the security offered by banks, card companies, and providers by the means of online payments, you can enter your bank details without fear. 

  • It’s easier for donors

Online giving is certainly a time-saver for your organization, but it’s also easier for the donors. Many people are turning to the internet to manage their finances, and so make it easy for them – let them give to your nonprofit in the same way! Additionally, allowing them to give when convenient for them makes is easier. They don’t have to wait until your office is open – then can give whenever and wherever.

  • This allows you to collect more

Enabling payment online allows donors a wide choice of payment methods, and thus encourages them. The more choices they have, the more the giving becomes simple for your donors, and the more likely he is they are to give!

  • Online collection can be communicated

Once your organization has traction with online giving, it’s important to broadcast and communicate that online – through social media, email and your website. Platforms like GiveCentral.org can help your staff communicate your successes faster, giving them more time to promote your mission!

fundraising campaign

5 things to know before starting a fundraising campaign.

Want to launch your online fundraising campaign? A little strategy is in order! From the beginning of a Fundraising campaign, it is important for non-profit organizations to be aware of certain elements:

  • Philanthropists want to see results from their gift. If they agree to help fund a project, it’s because they believe in the organization and its mission. Make it clear in your marketing and messaging why is your organization raising funds.
  • It is tricky to solicit donations for the sole purpose of balancing a budget. It is easier to convince donors to participate in the development of your organization, or in a specific mission that the institution intends to carry out. To get more donors to become involved, the funds sought must be used to move the nonprofit organization.
  • Soliciting prospective donors in a non-targeted manner (for example starting with the letter A of a directory) whether it is specialized or not, is not considered the most effective strategy while starting a fundraising campaign. It is better to turn to potential donors (companies or individuals) who are already connected in one way or another to the fundraising institution or its members.
  • As often in marketing disciplines, loyalty to a donor is easier than recruiting a new donor. For this, the process of traceability, thanking your donors,  follow-ups and information regarding the use of donations are essential.
  • According to several recent studies, there is generally a very large disproportion in the amount of donations obtained.The Pareto principle applies here in full: the fact that 90% of donations come from 10% of donors is a common pattern. This can even go further (95-5 etc.). In conclusion, it is not necessarily useful to look for a large quantity donors, it is necessary to be able to detect and convince the quality ones.