Australian Fundraising Ideas Blog

Learn the secrets to holding a fun and profitable fundraiser from Mr Fundraising himself, Billy G - and others who have made fundraising work for their school or organisation!

4 Ideas To Add Energy To Your Fundraising Events

4 Ideas To Add Energy To Your Fundraising Events

Every fundraising event creates a developmental milestone for organisations. The events help you gauge whether your strategic plans are working or not. They are also used as basis to determine if your organisation is heading towards the right direction. Organising a fundraising event creates mixed feelings: excitement, fear, joy and sometimes, frustration. The success of the events depends on your planning. Things will work well if you use tried and true methods. Here are some forward-thinking ideas, you might want to try. 

1. Plan Interesting Events

One way to keep donors, volunteers and supporters interested in the event is by innovating your events. Keep your donors in mind by finding out about the things that capture their interest. When you engage donors, it should yield long-term results. Innovating events involve combining events, creating full experiences  and modernising your approaches. 

Combining events prevents boredom. Instead of concentrating on an auction, you can also include other activities such as scratch card fundraisers, fun run and much more. One thing you have to remember is that the fundraisers should match your target audience. Since the use of technology is popular nowadays, it is also necessary to modernise your silent auctions. When you host a fundraising event, add something fresh and fun so they will look forward to the event. 

2. Integrate Mobile Devices into Your Event

It will be easy to tap into younger audiences if you use mobile devices to connect with them. Your audience needs to have the option to donate conveniently at their own time. Accepting text donations and making your website available for them will help you gain the support you need. It is also essential to provide multiple options to your target audience. When using mobile solutions for your fundraising event, make sure that your interface is secure as users' personal information must be kept private. 

3. Tap into Social Media

Aside from making it mobile, staying social will also give your supporters the opportunity to get to know your fundraising event. The social media platforms such as Facebook allows you to broadcast a video feed, post updates and give followers information about your event. Many supporters find it more convenient to check your Facebook page than read newsletters. 

Keep your page updated by sharing content, videos and even images related to the event. It is also easy to integrate social fun into your event if you have a social media strategy because it increases your public reach. 

4. Build an Event Website

Aside from newsletters, social media and direct mail, you will also need to create a custom event website that will provide the exact details of the event. There are questions that are best answered by your website so make sure this is also available to your target audience. A dedicated website for your fundraising event will help supporters get an idea of your organisation's objective, mission and values. When creating an event website, your images, logos and even color scheme should match your organisation. 

Tips For Organising A School Fun Run

Tips For Organising A School Fun Run

Schools organise a fun run to promote physical fitness. The fundraising event is participated by students, teachers and parents. Students are the ones that collect donations based on their personal performance and pledges. School fun run is considered one of the most popular fundraisers and its success depends on the participants' level of performance and financial support. Fun run is intended to raise money for various causes. Although it is not a new idea, it is considered to be appealing to parent groups. 

Organising fun runs is no easy task. Whatever your objectives are, you need to make sure that you accomplish your goals. One of the most important things you need to keep in mind if you are going to organise fun runs is to encourage participation among students. Since students play a major role in ensuring fundraising success, it is essential to know the key things that will capture their interest. 

What are the keys for success?

Fun runs require strong leadership and advance planning. Although it is not as complicated as a silent auction, planning ahead of time is important so you can notify school staff, students and parents. You can encourage participation and increase the chances of success if everyone is aware of the event. Not all parents may be aware of the how fun runs work. Educating them about its concept will be a huge help. 

Aside from parents, school staff must also be educated so they can offer their full support. Clear communication with teachers about the role they should play will also be necessary. Getting teachers on board should also involve reassuring teachers that they have all the resources to make the event memorable. 

Establish a well-organised group

The workload can be overwhelming if you are organising a school fun run. This is the perfect time to break the workload into sub groups. It is easy to delegate tasks if you know the people who are going to take care of them. Avoid situations where volunteers get stuck with monumental load. Build a strong team that will help you get every task done. Fun runs require long-term commitment. Choose people that are committed and hard-working. 

When it comes to creating a systematic plan, starting months in advance helps you analyse where the problem lies. If you need to change some plans, advance planning will take you in the right direction. When setting goals, make sure you are realistic about your potential financial success. Think about the gross profit and find out whether or not it is reasonable. 

5 Steps To Evaluating Your Fundraising Campaign

5 Steps To Evaluating Your Fundraising Campaign

When you are running a fundraising campaign, there is no guarantee that it will be successful. Just because your campaign did not succeed does not mean you should quit. The feedback from your community can help you improve your strategies. It is also essential to come up with improvement question. This way, you will know which areas you need to improve. Evaluating your fundraising campaign helps you reach new levels especially if you are running a campaign every year. Here are the steps to evaluating your campaign. 

1. Analyse your data

At the end of your fundraising campaign, gather the data you need to analyse strengths and weaknesses. Find out whether you have met your goal or you have fallen short. Having numbers in hand will give you an idea about your performance. You can also use the data as your starting point when it comes to getting some additional donors that can help you with your fundraising campaign. Your data will also serve as your roadmap that will lead you to the direction you are going to take. 

2. Continue to evaluate

Even if you have succeeded in running a fundraising campaign, there will still be a lot of room for improvement. If you used to accommodate a small community, your success can lead you to setting bigger goals. With bigger goals to accomplish, this will include creating new strategies. Keep in mind that you need to have continuous improvement as you go along. You will need to repeat the evaluation process as you set new goals. 

3. Stay focused

It is easy to lose track of your goals and mission when there are so many things left to do. A successful fundraising organisation stay focused on the mission to ensure it is successfully completed. You can raise more money if you know where to put your focus on. Come up with qualitative questions that will enable you to get a better idea of your campaign and its mission. 

4. Have a forward-thinking mindset

Setting goals should not be a one-time thing. Since running a fundraising campaign needs commitment, have a future-focused evaluation. It helps you set goals for next year. Being prepared for your future campaigns will give confidence to solve problems. In this process, you will need to identify the things you need to maintain and change. 

5. Welcome feedback

Even the most successful fundraising organisation is not immune to unflattering criticisms. When you welcome feedback even if it means accepting unpleasant comments from volunteers, stakeholders, donors and the people in your community, taking something in your stride will improve your organisation. 

Online Fundraising And The Best Practices To Follow

Online Fundraising And The Best Practices To Follow

Have you been using social media platforms to take fundraising to the next level? It may be time to refresh your approach by checking if you are following best practices. Although technology can do a lot when it comes to improving online fundraising approaches, it is also important to keep in mind that there are many privacy issues that must be addressed. As a development leader, donors' rights must be protected especially in the online world. 

Unfortunately, maintaining ethics of online giving is easier said than done. In fact, it can be daunting as you need to follow some guidelines in improving safety in the digital age. There are best practices you can follow to protect both your donors and organisation. As a fundraising organisation, you need to maintain reputation that you are a safe and trusted recipient. 

1. Build your identity

Donors need to know who you are before they commit to making a donation. Establishing your identity not only builds trust but creates positive relationship with your donors as well. When creating a website for your organisation, include your purpose and mission. More often than not, these basics are the ones being missed out. Make it a point to include essential information upfront as this is the first step to communicating honestly with your donors. You can also include a video as this can be a start of a friendly conversation. 

2. Keep your website current

The last thing that a donor wants to see is a website cluttered up with unnecessary information that will only cloud your donors' mind. A clear and current website with fresh content helps your donor know your fundraising activities. Having a website that is easy to understand will also help your donors find out what your organisation is about. 

3. Be honest and transparent

Transparency is the identical twin of trust. You cannot earn your donors' trust if you are not transparent to them. If there is part of the donation process that you need to disclose, you can share the essential information so donors will have an idea where their donation goes. It is also important to be open about the privacy policies of your organisation. A privacy policy must be included on your website. It should state the information you gather from your donors and how you are going to use the information. For instance, making online donations must be processed using a secure system so the personal and financial information of donors are protected. 

3 Secrets To Holding A Successful Fundraising Campaign With The Millennial Generation

3 Secrets To Holding A Successful Fundraising Campaign With The Millennial Generation

Is there a secret to interacting with the millennial generation? While many fundraising organisations are trying to tap into this generation by becoming more innovative, it is sad to say that only a few have managed to succeed. When dealing with millennials, it is important to understand the factors that will capture their interest. Dubbed by some generations as lazy and apathetic, the millennial generation has the potential to contribute to the success of your fundraising campaign. Here are 3 secrets to winning their hearts:

Familiarise your target audience

The millennial generation has been born into the digital era. Everything is fast-paced, quick, easy and convenient. Knowing the trends that will appeal to this generation will help you get the right audience for your campaign. These days, a company composed of this generation will surely not find technology challenging. In fact, they are the generation that can be considered technologically savvy and they know how to work smarter than others. This means they do not believe in working longer to accomplish business goals. In fundraising, think about how this young generation can raise funds and awareness. Once you have profiled this generation, stimulating their interest will be a breeze. 

Explore, interact, engage

A generation that grows up with the Internet has one thing in mind: online applications and mobile apps. Use technology for running your fundraising campaigns. These simple tools can go a long way when it comes to capturing young generation's attention. When you use technology to your advantage by making it easy and convenient for this audience to donate, it will not be difficult to interact with them. Since information is made available by various channels including social media, make your organisation relevant by creating your own Facebook page. It is easy for this generation to know what is going on when you keep them posted. 

Use multiple communication channels and platforms

When it comes to communication with this generation, it is also important to use social media in engaging effectively. You will also have to build a website so millennials are updated of your events. Videos, images and blogs can also help you engage this generation. When this audience asks questions, try to reply promptly. It is also necessary to deliver pertinent information that captures their attention. 

Being accommodating is also essential especially when you hold fundraising events. Millennials easily get bored once they sense that you are not giving value to their personal time. Encourage them to participate and offer rewards. It will not be difficult to get this generation involved if you know the right formula.

4 Things Donors Expect From Fundraisers

4 Things Donors Expect From Fundraisers

Long-term donors are hard to find as the competition is getting heavier and heavier. Some organisations are good at cultivating donors and that is the main reason they choose to stay. However, the secret recipe to keeping and winning donors is not easy to make. As they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating. Donors will not be convinced to support your organisation unless you have proven that you are deserving of their trust and commitment. 

Their giving experience needs to be a rewarding one. Unfortunately, providing an unforgettable experience to donors is easier said than done. The first thing to know before you approach donors is their expectation. While you expect donors to give you their long-term commitment, donors also have their own expectations. 

1. Donors want to make a big difference. 

Regardless of the donation they make, donors want to feel they are important. Acknowledging donors and letting them know that their donation matters can go a long way. They are not merely donors, but people who are helping you accomplish your goals. Thanking them for their generosity will not hurt. 

2. Donors want get the result. 

It is normal for donors to be curious about the outcome of your program. They have the right to know what happened to your campaign. If you are going to leave your donors hanging after they make a donation, it will leave an impression that they mean nothing to your organisation and you are only after their money. Giving donors the outcome of your program will make them feel accomplished as well. 

3. Donors want to be assured that your organisation is trustworthy.

Keeping donors is not easy because trust is going to be difficult to establish when you are dealing with first-time donors. Organisations have to show they are worthy of the donor's trust. When you make promises, you need to keep them. If they make a donation, you will also have to prove that you have the ability to handle money wisely. 

4. Donors want to be appreciated. 

You may not see in donors how much they want to be thanked and appreciated, but recognising their generosity has a powerful impact when it comes to retaining them. If you need to go out of your way to thank them do so because it will make them feel more inspired to donate again. 

Donors will not hesitate to support your organisation if you share heart-warming stories, sincere gratitude, clear explanation and excellent customer service. These practical things will not only help you build trust, but also deepen relationships. 

4 Key Traits Of A Successful Fundraiser

4 Key Traits Of A Successful Fundraiser

Many organisations do everything to become successful in fundraising, but there will always be a missing piece of the puzzle that makes success elusive. Your organisation may have all the resources including donors, volunteers, board members, developers and supporters, but it is still not enough to achieve your goals. Aside from your resources,  professionals will succeed  in fundraising by possessing the following traits. 

1. Ability to adapt to what donors want

One of the greatest challenges you will face all throughout your fundraising career is the way the industry changes. Just when you have embraced changes, you will discover that there are better techniques being introduced to make fundraising more convenient for everyone. As a leader, you will need to know what donors want and respond immediately. Delays can drive donors away. Whether you are retaining existing supporters or welcoming new ones, having the ability to adapt to change makes a great difference. 

2. Interpersonal and communication skills

Donors are convinced to make a donation if they see genuine interest in leaders to help a community. Being part of an organisation means that you need an effective interpersonal and communication skills. Maintaining positive and pleasing relationships with donors is essential. Even though you do not have an upcoming fundraising event, it does not necessarily mean that you should stop communicating with donors. Make it a point to stay in touch with them as this sends a message that you also recognise their generosity. 

3. Resilience

Everyone in your organisation may have a brilliant idea, but not all of these ideas can catapult your organisation to success. Failures are part and parcel of running a fundraiser. However, this does not mean that your quest to greatness ends. Being resilient is a trait every member of your organisation should have because it enables you to explore ideas and become innovative. Failures are also part of learning and stellar professionals have the ability to bounce back and try again. 

4. Patience and tolerance

There is no such thing as perfect donor relationship as there can be road bumps. As a development professional, having tolerance and patience to listen to volunteers and donors even if you do not get all of their approvals, means that you are ready to go the extra mile to make every fundraising campaign a success. Keeping your cool despite the chaos is a great example of good leadership. Do not be the first one to give up because it will also create a ripple effect on your members. 

3 Things You Can Teach Students During A School Fundraiser

3 Things You Can Teach Students During A School Fundraiser

Pursuing a school fundraiser is indeed interesting, but it requires involvement from teachers, students and parents. Everyone can benefit from participating in a school fundraiser, but the students are the ones that can benefit the most. This is because fundraising teaches some essential lessons that create a long-term positive effect on students. 

Setting Goals 

The most important lesson students can learn from fundraising is setting goals. It may not be meaningful especially to younger children, but explaining to them the reason goal setting is meaningful will enable students to realise its impact. Working toward a goal is not an easy thing to do. In accomplishing goals, it is necessary to show the process so children will know that it takes hard work and commitment to accomplish the goal. As adults, fundraising developers and leaders should lead by example. 

Practicing Self-Sacrifice

For children to experience success, they need to commit themselves to the process required to achieve long-term goals. With self-sacrifice, children will learn that it is a good feeling to help others in their own ways. This can soon develop into a life-long habit as they journey toward adulthood. Focusing on the needs of others and working hand in hand to fulfil these needs mean a lot. 

Articulating Passion

Passion is essential to ensure fundraising success. Children gain experience by providing some presentations that will help them articulate their passion. When it comes to fundraising, not everyone has the passion to help a community. There are key recipes to ensure success such as getting the right people to execute a long-term plan. One thing that can translate plans into meaningful action is by demonstrating how special skills can be useful in opening doors to many opportunities. 

A person needs to have the ability to understand other people. You cannot be successful in the field of fundraising if you are not comfortable with yourself. You will need to start early by nurturing children so they can create and even share a vision. You will also have to listen to people and show genuine care to them. All these attributes will not happen in an instant. It takes years to become a seasoned fundraiser. It is essential to pass on these vital lesson to the next generation so they too will know how to become great fundraisers. 

5 Signs Your Fundraising Campaign Fails

5 Signs Your Fundraising Campaign Fails

Is fundraising success really for seasoned leaders? Is there a chance for beginners to succeed in fundraising despite the lack of experience? You might have organised a fundraising event in the past and you found yourself scratching your head, wondering what could have gone wrong. These occasional setbacks do not seem to matter if you have encountered an A-HA moment wherein you have finally found the answers to your questions. However, if you are still in the same situation, completely clueless about the next steps to take, then your next fundraising event is doomed to fail. Fortunately, you can take full control of the event's outcome. The solution is simple: Avoid common fundraising mistakes. These five mistakes may be the reason for fundraising slip-ups. 

1. Confusing Fundraising Story

A fundraising story has deep impact on people. However, it is also essential for these stories to connect with your audience emotionally. Ambiguous stories will only dissuade people. Make sure you are mindful of how you deliver your message. It helps when you ask yourself how you are going to attain your goal. Your message should be informative and focused. Avoid rushing into creating a story when you have not yet articulated your mission. Everything must be clear and detailed. 

2. Unclear Call to Action

A call to action compels people to take the next step. It signals audience to act now. A clear call to action means that people are completely aware of the steps to take. Missing a call to action or failing to push people in the right direction means that you are not doing well in promoting a campaign. Readers should be motivated to spread your campaign. If there is no sense of urgency established, it will be difficult to get a response from your target audience. 

3. Poor Visual Content

Why is putting high-resolution images and photos required to increase online fundraiser success? Quality visual content matters. Compelling images tell your fundraising story minus the words. While it only demands less effort, many organisations fail to get the right formula because of choosing the wrong images. Aside from fundraising stories, photos and videos also create a powerful impact. Make sure your visual content communicates to your readers. 

4. Lack of Social Media Strategy

The social media is one of the contributions of advanced technology that has the power to tap into your target audience. Many organisations have succeeded because of utilising social media well. This social platform can reach thousands and even millions of potential supporters and donors. One engaging content and you can win yourself multitudes of followers. Unfortunately, social media sites will not attract audience for you unless you have put strategies in place. For these social platforms to work perfectly, your social media site needs to keep your audience come back for more. 

5. No Updates

After an event participated by interested members of your community, everyone deserves to be updated to get ideas of what your future plans will look like. Not giving updates to your donors, volunteers and supporters will only send a signal that your future projects are hanging by a thread. Keeping people in the loop will let them know the status and milestones of your organisation. 

What Makes A Fundraising Campaign Unique?

What Makes A Fundraising Campaign Unique?

Have you ever wondered why some fundraising campaigns are successful while others are still struggling to connect with the audience. There are key ingredients that should be present in your campaign to ensure long term growth and deeper connection. 

1. Your target audience

You will never earn sufficient support from your audience if you do not understand them. It is important that you know your audience so you can achieve your goals. When it comes to understanding your audience, having evidence of their genuine passion and interest in supporting your campaign goes a long way. When creating a copy, think about the reaction of your audience before sending the fundraising letter. Ask yourself as though you were in your audience's shoes: how would you feel if you were to receive the fundraising letter? When you ask the right questions, you will be able to create an impactful campaign. 

2. Your story

It is difficult for potential donors to connect if they do not know the stories you tell. A personal story that people can relate to will not only capture your prospects' attention but also touch their hearts. Emotional connection matters especially to first-time supporters. Is there any campaign that created an emotional impact on people? Knowing the story that can help people understand your objectives, values, mission and vision will help you gain enough support.

3. Your engagement

Engagement encompasses many aspects such as branding, email, print and many others. Nowadays, there are four active generations you should engage: traditionalists, boomers, Gen-X and Millennials. Each generation has a different way of using technology. Although the social media connects all generations, there are different ways you can tap into these audiences. Check your branding including the logo, font sizes, font types and other specifications. Direct mail is still relevant to your audiences, but integrated approach must be considered. 

4. Your communication

Aside from engagement, your communication strategy is also considered as a driving force that will take your fundraising campaign to the peak of success. However, crafting a communication strategy is easier said than done. This is because the email you send should be branded and have call to action. It is also essential that your call to action is visible. It will also be important to give something back as incentives for their hard work. In terms of email campaigns, structuring them as an automatic resend will also help you follow up on your prospects. 

Even if you only have a limited resources and time, it does not necessarily mean that you cannot have a successful fundraising campaign. Even saying thank you provides you a better chance of earning and retaining donors.  

How To Accomplish Fundraising Goals As A Community Organiser

How To Accomplish Fundraising Goals As A Community Organiser

There are many things that a community organiser needs to focus on for a fundraising event to be successful. Some organisers who already know the ins and outs of fundraising may consider the task fun and exciting, but for those who have just plunged into this type of endeavor, fundraising principles are quite foreign to them. Being an organiser is not an easy task. You have to be always prepared and ready to give a helping hand. You should also be true to your mission. Here are some key steps so you can benefit from your role in the community. 

Understand the role you play

Perhaps you have your own reasons for accepting the position. While it is not easy, there is no reason for you to quit. It is important that you understand how fundraising works. It is only then that you will be able to help people in your community. You cannot help strengthen the community if you do not know your objective. Do you want to help people recover from a disaster? Do you want to plant flowers or trees? Knowing your objective will serve as your road map. It will take to the direction you desire. 

A clear purpose will enable you understand your efforts. You will also have a clue how the community can benefit from your program. Involving everyone in your project will lessen the burden and give you more ideas that will connect people in your community. 

Encourage community involvement

Fundraising requires group efforts. Even if you have a brilliant idea, it will not be materialised unless you decide to involve donors, volunteers and your fellow organiser. Their involvement will help you craft some creative ideas, which you will need to achieve your goals. You will also notice that your tasks become less burdensome as you know that you have made a great difference. Invite people to attend meetings so they can also contribute their ideas. Giving people an opportunity to extend a helping hand and set goals as a group are going to be a rewarding experience. 

Avoid competing with other local fundraisers. 

Keep in mind that timing is everything. If you want your fundraising event to create a great impact on the community, it needs to be properly organised. While there is no such a thing as "off-season" in fundraising, you will still have to avoid competing. You need to create a plan for the next few months. You need to be prepared and try to tap into everyone's potential. 

Boost campaign by using social media

The social media can widen your public reach. A Facebook group or page can go a long way when it comes to boosting your fundraiser. It is also a great avenue for improving your circle of support. The page has to be updated by sharing photos or videos. A short video that highlights your project will definitely help people understand your objectives and mission. 

Your Volunteers Can Be One Of Your Greatest Assets

Your Volunteers Can Be One Of Your Greatest Assets

Volunteering requires commitment, hardwork and passion to serve. Whether it is about spending many hours recruiting donors or promoting a fundraising campaign, top notch volunteers always go the extra mile to deliver excellent result. Fundraising is a long-term commitment. Just because an event is successful does not mean that you should be complacent about the results. Since fundraising is a team effort, employing these techniques can make your volunteers one of the greatest assets of your organisation. 

Provide volunteer opportunities

The first step to searching for talents that will help you reach your goal is to make volunteer opportunities. A community is rich in budding fundraisers. You just need to find out how you can tap into their potential. When there is an opportunity to find people who can make a difference in the community, you will be able to reach greater heights. 

You can organise an activity that will help prospects make use of their creativity and resourcefulness. This is also a perfect opportunity for you to discover talented individuals who can make your fundraising event extraordinary. 

Identify challenges

As a beginner, volunteers can struggle with carrying out tasks. There will be some bumps and obstacles that will deter them from achieving the goals. You will never know what else they need to improve unless you find out what their challenges are. Make it a point to talk to them. Everyone has flaws and imperfections so as a leader, make them feel comfortable about their weaknesses. You can address these weaknesses if volunteers are fully aware of them. For instance, if you do not see any commitment in your new volunteers, find out the reason behind the reluctance. There might be problems you need to address so they can be fully committed to your organisation. Without knowing their challenges, you will perceive these people as lazy and unwilling. If it is their first time to volunteer, the lack of commitment may be due to being inexperienced. 

Train volunteers

For seasoned volunteers, calling or emailing donors is a breeze. However, new volunteers will find the task challenging especially when they are not properly trained to interact with other people. Training is essential for new volunteers. When volunteers undergo training, they will become more confident about what they are doing. You do not have to provide them directions from time to time because they already know what they are going to do. They will have the initiative to contribute ideas during meetings and become more committed regardless of the task you assign to them. 

4 Ways To Encourage High School Students To Participate In Fundraising Event

4 Ways To Encourage High School Students To Participate In Fundraising Event

High schoolers have passion to help your fundraising campaign succeed. They may be young and may not be financially equipped, but they have the power to connect just like adults. High school student fundraisers have the potential to be influential for your organisation because of their social network presence. They are also the future of fundraising as they have the ability to disseminate your campaign across the entire school. 

However, the only way high schoolers can demonstrate this potential is when they are motivated. Giving them responsibilities that will enable them to learn naturally will ensure success. It is important to align your strategies with the learning habits of the students. 

When engaging students, you need to make education more meaningful by allowing independence, fostering a sense of competence, promoting natural learning and creating environments that enable you to collaborate. Here are the ways students can learn:

Create a meaningful goal

It is important for high school students to perceive your campaign as meaningful so they will devote their time supporting your organisation. A meaningful goal means you know the things that high school students care about. For you to accomplish this goal, you need to think about the fundraising initiatives you have done in the past, which enable you to engage younger supporters. 

Empower students

Aside from aiming students to be successful, they should also be empowered so they can connect with students who have been previously successful in supporting a fundraising campaign. Previously successful student fundraisers can walk new members through best practices so they too can achieve success. Once new fundraisers realise that success happens in real world, not only will they feel encouraged but follow best efforts as well. 

Make room for independence 

Although students need guidance so they can accomplish their goals, they also want freedom so they can work in a way that is tailored to their rules, conditions and preferences. When you make room for independence, you allow fundraisers to share their personal connection, communicate and create students' own challenge. When students can operate autonomously, there will be more opportunities to expand ideas about your cause. 

Encourage students to collaborate

When students are working together, diverse opinions and ideas are brought together as you achieve a common goal. You will also know how to accomplish a common goal. Students will be more inspired to work together and collaborate if they have achieved a unified vision. Your organisation plays a vital role in building and sustaining a strong relationship with students so they too can have a foundation built on collaborative relationship.

4 Steps To Creating Engaging Fundraising Content

4 Steps To Creating Engaging Fundraising Content

When you are appealing to potential donors, it is important to personalise every interaction to create a social impact. When donors' judgement is clouded with doubts, it is difficult to win their approval. You need to make sure that you know how to connect with donors in such a way that will touch their hearts. 

If you have been observing how successful fundraising organisations do it, you will realise that all of them have one thing in common: the genuine interest to make a difference. Regardless of your objectives, you need to go the extra mile so you can reach out to as many donors as you like. It all starts with creating engaging content. 

1. Do it now

They say that you have to strike while the iron is hot if you want to make the most out of fundraising. Creativity has no limit. This is why you need to find time to make use of it while you can. Before you start writing your content, think about how you can connect with donors. This is where formulating creative content comes into play. If you are going to take advantage of the opportunity to connect with donors by exhausting networks and connections, accomplishing your goals will never be as challenging as you think. 

2. Make it personal

Narratives are supposed to be unique and personalised. Generic fundraising letters and stories will never have an impact on your readers. In fact, it will only bore them especially when you are not conveying your message. Use social media platforms to inspire other people. Powerful images have a strong impact on donors. Connect with people from your email list. Give them a phone call and provide them updates. 

3. Ask directly

Before posting on social media, it is essential to have some momentum. Although your family and closest friends will be your direct supporter, you also need to go beyond approaching them. Your friends can provide you support whenever you need it, but you also need to approach others to get on board. Find out how you can make a connection. Start establishing rapport and make it an effort to learn about the things that will poke their interest. 

4. Send handwritten thank you note

Aside from updating your donors on your organisation's progress, sending a handwritten thank you note can go a long way. It tells donors that you are making an effort to connect and appreciate them. A handwritten note is indeed personal. Thanking your donors can also increase your retention rate because it shows that you acknowledge them.

3 Ways To Make Fundraising Successful And Rewarding

3 Ways To Make Fundraising Successful And Rewarding

Is there a secret recipe for fundraising success? Why are organisations that continue to soar high while other flop? Are fundraising leaders born not made? There are many questions that linger. Is it really possible to predict fundraising success? If you have been asking questions as success seems to be elusive, it only takes three techniques for you to be on the road to success. 

1. Personalise your fundraising approach 

Personalisation gives value to your fundraising page. It tells a unique story and sends a message that you stand out from the crowd. Although employing this technique can be a challenge especially when you have been using generic approaches, practice makes perfect. Doing a lot of research and profiling your donors and supporters will be the first step to personalising your fundraising approach. Do not be afraid to experiment because that is the only way you will be able to learn how to get your donors' attention. Tell interesting stories that will impact your audience. It should show how committed you are to helping your community. 

2. Step out of your comfort zone

It pays to have a theme when you are conducting an online fundraising campaign. While the Internet is a great place to attract potential donors, catching their attention is going to be a challenge. When organising your campaign, make sure that you have prepared activities and materials unique to your organisation. There should be something that will help people identify your organisation. When choosing fundraisers, it is important to find out about your prospects' interest. Do you wish to target schools? Knowing how to capture your audience's attention will help you achieve your primary objective.

3. Encourage everyone to participate

Nothing is more inspiring than having a group of supporters helping you accomplish your goals. Each member does have contribution to the success of your fundraising campaign. Make sure everyone is committed to helping you succeed in fundraising. Schedule a weekly or monthly meeting so you can discuss things that need to be done. The only way you can improve results in fundraising is when you are looking for more creative ways to keep everyone interested in supporting your cause. You should not be afraid to take the first step to encouraging your members, donors and volunteers. Every accomplishment, big or small must be recognised as this gesture is one way to motivate them. It makes them feel you appreciate every effort they put it for the campaign to be a huge success. 

Retain Donors By Building Trust And Transparency

Retain Donors By Building Trust And Transparency

For an organisation to survive, keeping donations flowing is essential. Unfortunately, organisations are struggling to retain donors and cultivate relationships with new supporters because of one problem:Trust. It takes efforts to earn your donors' trust. How do you become transparent to your donors to earn their trust? By employing 4 techniques, you will be able to be on your way to building trust and transparency. 

1. Inform donors where the money goes. 

Sending a thank-you note once you receive donations is not enough because donors must also know where their hard-earned money went. When donors feel as though their money was not spent properly, it will not take long for them to feel cheated. Being honest with your donors can go a long way. It will not only remove their doubts but also increase the likelihood of donating again. 

2. Be more specific.

Generalising the information you provide to donors will not do any good. Being specific will help them figure out about the progress of your fundraising campaign. You can do this by creating pie charts, providing facts and figures and showing real change. Going into details will provide donors an idea about your organisation and why they should support it. 

3. Tell an inspiring story. 

Donors who know how important their support has been can make a great difference. Telling the whole story will inspiring them to extend their help. Instead of giving them tidbits of what is happening in your organisation, they will also appreciate it if you are going to paint the whole picture. It gives them an idea about the difference they made. 

4. Be authentic.

Everyone can pretend to be passionate about helping the community but only those with genuine interest to help can accomplish their goals. Being genuine means showing your sincerity and willingness to help people in your own unique way. When it comes to being authentic, you need to ask yourself about the things that will make you accomplish your fundraising goals. 

Trust and transparency go hand in hand. You cannot establish trust without being transparent. When you keep donors involved in your plans, it will be easy for them to connect with you. If they donate and you acknowledge them, they will never have second thoughts about donating again. When there is trust, it will not be difficult for existing donors to invite their friends and family to support your organisation. Donors are not only making a donation but also providing long-term support so your organisation can accomplish its mission and meet its objective. 

What Does It Take To Retain Donors?

What Does It Take To Retain Donors?

Donor retention is harder than acquiring a new donor. Many organisations struggle with retaining donors because previous donors no longer see a good reason to stay. Is your organisation also struggling with donor retention?

Donor retention starts with establishing a relationship. However, the idea of establishing a relationship with donors is easier said than done. There are a few things you need to keep in mind. 

What is donor retention?

Donor retention has to do with relationship building between your organisation and donors. It is not an easy endeavor as there are some factors you have to take into consideration as to why donors leave while others stay. First impression really lasts. Making a good impression involves having creative communication. 

When it comes to communicating effectively, organisation should go beyond raising money. Donors do not appreciate if they receive a generic note. The way you communicate with someone will depend upon the information you are going to share. Is it something relevant? Fundraising letters should be personalised and should reflect the objective of your organisation. 

How to improve donor retention?

Establishing relationship with donors is not easy if you are not learning about your donors. It is important that you know your donor's interest so you will have an idea how you can motivate them. It takes more than just a generic "thank you" for you to establish a positive relationship and retain donors. There is a dramatic difference when you personalise every donor encounter. 

When donors have the freedom to express themselves and connect with your organisation emotionally, it will not be impossible to retain them. Allow donors to select their interests by creating separate messages that focus on your organisation's objective and goals. Seeing your donors as more than just a transaction can create a great difference. It is also important to engage donors based on their interests. You will keep them motivated this way. 

5 Essential Techniques To Run A Successful Fundraising Campaign

5 Essential Techniques To Run A Successful Fundraising Campaign

The decision to organise a fundraising campaign is a serious endeavor as you need to go into every detail. There should be a solid plan to ensure that you maintain communication and engagement. Every campaign is different, but effective techniques can minimise failure and maximise success. 

1. Let people know about the campaign

A fundraising campaign will not be successful if only you and your staff know about it. Promoting your campaign will help you gain supporters, volunteers and donors. Create a Facebook page so you can keep track of the people following you. This is also an opportunity to get these followers involved. If someone is not on your email list, they are most likely to follow your Facebook pages. Your campaign must be visible across various channels. Make the most use of your social media accounts by adding a call-to-action. 

2. Add a donation page 

A branded online donation page catches prospects' attention. Instead of a generic donation page, taking the time to create a donation page dedicated to a specific campaign will make donors check out the page. It is also a rewarding experience that will motivate your donors to support your campaign. When customising your donation check out page, there should be specific campaign logo that will represent your current campaign. 

3. Tell your story in a video

Creating a campaign video has a strong impact on your fundraising pages. When telling a story, you can use animation and show why your audience should get involved. When you tell a story, you will also increase the likelihood of getting more engagement from your audience. Donors and fundraisers will also find it easier to learn about the cause once you have a campaign video. 

4. Contact dedicated supporters

The success of your fundraising campaign will also depend on how committed your supporters are. Quality is better than quantity. Even if there are only a few supporters, being dedicated in making the campaign a great success will create a huge impact on accomplishing your goals. With a skillful soft launch, it will also signal supporters to ask friends and family to join your campaign. 

5. Celebrate success

If you have reached milestones and accomplishments, you should invite everyone in your organisation to celebrate successes. It will help encourage your supporter to work towards a common goal. Update fundraisers and donors on the results of your campaign. You can also keep their spirits high by setting weekly goals. Be active on social media by posting your progress. Spreading the good news is going to create a positive effect on your supporters. 

Reasons Schools Need A Solid Fundraising Plan

Reasons Schools Need A Solid Fundraising Plan

Organising a fundraising event for your school takes dedication, commitment and consistency. Schools that were able to savor the success of raising money have prepared months ahead to ensure that the event goes as planned. They know that a solid fundraising plan can result in long-term fundraising success. 

However, there are still schools that are comfortable doing their thing without any strategic plan in mind. Why is there a need to create fundraising plans?

1. Fundraising plans give you insights

School fundraising can be demanding and distracting. It can consume 80% of your time especially if you are only a few weeks away from the event. Without a fundraising plan, you will not know how many volunteers you need to accomplish your goals. It will also be difficult for you to identify the areas you need to improve. Everything will be a struggle as you cannot see the whole picture. 

2. Fundraising plans help keep things organised

It is difficult to manage a team of volunteers because each and every one has their own personality and preferences. A plan ensures everyone is on the same page. You are assured that all of your staff has the same priority, which is to create a successful campaign for your school. If you are working towards the same goals, it will not be challenging for you to keep the entire team helping and supporting each other. 

3. Fundraising plans hold all members accountable

Regardless of the event's outcome, each member should be held accountable for the success and failure of the campaign. Plans allow you to provide deadlines and responsibilities. When these are not successfully met, staff, board members and everyone in the group will admit their mistakes and just not pin the blame on anyone else. When your school stays on track, it easy for your organisation to thrive especially in an environment where competition is tough. 

Plans give you an idea how you can improve your strategies and help your members grow. Knowing what their strengths and weaknesses will help you become more prepared for the challenges ahead. There are unexpected things in raising money that may soon be the cause for members to leave. However, with a fundraising and back up plan, you will be able to pick them up and spread their wings again so they can soar higher. 

Techniques To Building A Rewarding Career In Fundraising

Techniques To Building A Rewarding Career In Fundraising

There may be hundreds of fundraising organisations out there but only a few have what it takes to stand out from the crowd. If you are new to fundraising, you need to learn from experts as they know that there is more to fundraising than just collecting proven strategies and approaches. 

For seasoned organisations, they have not succeeded just because they are destined to do so. They have mastered the art of raising funds by nurturing their donors, honing skills of their members and showing truth, trust and transparency. 

These techniques may seem like a walk in the park to some, but for majority of organisations that are still trying to climb the ladder of success, it is a painful, tedious, tiring and elusive process. Fledgling organisations may even think that success in fundraising is merely a figment of development professional's imagination. This statement will only ring true if you embrace the principle that one solution fits all. 

Your job as a development professional can be quite demanding and you need to stay sane to perform a fantastic job in meeting the needs of your organisation. So, how do you do it?

Be authentic and honest

It takes a lot of courage to look people in the eye and ask for money. You need to show genuine interest and passion. You need to emotionally connect to show people you have the desire to help and you do not have any intention of wasting their hard-earned money. 

Be willing to train staff

Your staff needs a little push for them to become the best performers. While you may already know the ins and outs of fundraising, your staff still needs more time to digest everything that fundraising encompasses. If you tell them to ask people for money, they will immediately focus on the primary objectives, which include raising enough funds to support a good cause. However, they also need to know the benefits of fundraising. Learning the ropes of fundraising takes time. Provide sufficient training to staff to develop a successful fundraising campaign. 

Be realistic

So you have dreamed of shooting for the moon, but have you already figured out what you are going to do in case you miss? Excitement can result in setting unrealistic expectations. However, bad execution gets in the way and it can create a ripple effect. When you set expectations, it is imperative that you also provide solutions. Some things do not go as planned. You need a back up plan to accomplish your goals. 

Be appreciative

Everyone in your organisation contributes to the success of your campaign. You cannot just give yourself a pat on the back when you know that many people made your fundraising event possible. You work as a team and regardless of how little or big the contributions are, each and every member has made a mark. As a development professional, you need to build appreciation to motivate everyone to participate in the next fundraising event. Your volunteers, donors and staff are your greatest investment. Without whom, the success of fundraising will not be possible.