The coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has become much more than just a disease- it has long-term effects on the health and pockets of people across the world. As experts are trying to figure a way out, many nonprofits are struggling with how to help their communities while also trying to stay afloat themselves.
With these struggles come difficult questions for nonprofit fundraising across the nation. How could a nonprofit function in this time of crisis? What changes they must make? What new techniques must they adopt? How to spread their word? Ultimately, how to manage their nonprofit fundraising? These are all important questions that need answers.
Nonprofits all over the country are thinking about the same questions. So we compiled a set of resources that might help you during this period and a guide to make your organization function smoothly.
The world is in isolation, which means there is zero chance for you to meet your supporters or your donors directly. The only way you could get in touch with them, or communicate with them is through the internet. That is where a donor management software plays the most important role. In this time, when help is so uncertain, compiling your donor data on one platform and using it to access their preferences, shaping your fundraising efforts around them and creating communication templates that would engage and inspire your donors into action, and a donor management software does that. How? Take a look:
Donor data and the information it caters to
The most important thing right now is your donor data. Figure out your data in a way that it answers these questions:
- Who are your recurring supporters?
- What are their locations?
- How many of these donors donate to crisis related fundraisers (eg – a fundraising event related to last year’s Hurricane Dorian)?
- How many of your donors frequently interact with your organization?
- How many of your donors regularly use social media?
- What payment methods are your donors most comfortable with?
A donor management software will help you easily locate these answers. It would help you build donor profiles and add tags to them which will help you easily categorize them.
For example, if a donor named Andrew frequently reads your emails, your preferred communication type for him would be Emails. So you could add a tag “Email” under the communication tab in their donor profile.
Relationship and Household management
A donor management software could help you trace out the relationships among your donors. This might not look useful but ends up becoming a healthy equipment while figuring out a way to reach your donors.
For example – Let’s say some of your new donors belong to a community that has been regularly supporting your organization in the past. You could thus send them customized emails appreciating their support and showing them the impact, also the importance of their support. This would attract their attention and they would feel a personal connection with your organization, which makes them more likely to donate.
Engaging bigger donors
There are many nonprofits out there that need donations right now. One way you could stand out of the rest is by engaging with the bigger donors, for example philanthropists or corporations.
Start by thinking a long term plan.
Nobody wants to see their money being wasted when they donate to a charitable organization. Bigger donors may very well want to be donors for a while. But, ultimately they want to make sure their money is going to the right places where they can see tangible improvement or growth. Making such long term relationships becomes much easier with a donor management software.
- Make it personal
It isn’t just a bank account that you are dealing with. Be as personal as you would be with smaller donors. For example, if the big donor is an alumnus of your organization, remind them of nostalgic memories they had at your institution. Also, keep them updated on what the organization is currently doing so that they feel personally connected to your work. This will make them more interested in getting involved.
- Keep them updated
Send them regular updates about how you are planning to act during this global pandemic. Churches could send regular invitations to their online masses or interactive sessions which could just be small discussions about their well being and the situation around the community.
Use donor management software to keep track of donations
A donor management software isn’t used just to update your donor data or track their preferences. It could also be used to check where your donations are coming from. Make a checklist around the following points:
- Check which links are getting you the most attention– social media, emails, webinars or live streams?
- Check what payment method is the most preferred by your donors. Include various options for your donors– like Credit Cards, ACH, Mobile Giving, etc.– so that they could donate with whatever option is feasible to them, wherever they are.
- Embed smart tokens and express communication in your emails, so that there is no need of redirecting your donors to different pages for donations and they could directly donate from your emails.
At the end, there is no denying the fact that we are all living in fear of the unknown right now. But even in the greatest tragedies, there’s one thing that helps us drive right through them – hope.
And that’s the kind of message to relay right now!