You may not have formal fundraising experience, but that doesn’t mean you can’t organize a successful charity drive. What better way to make a positive impact on your community than by launching your own fundraising campaign for a cause close to your heart? Not everyone can afford to make huge donations on their own, but many people find themselves raising a lot of money by turning to online fundraising platforms. Crowdfunding is the best way to raise money for charity because it provides a simple, efficient tool for accepting donations from anyone in your community and around the world who sees your online campaign and feels inclined to give.
The Power of Crowdfunding
You don’t have to be a software engineer—or even hire one—to create an easy-to-share web page from which to solicit donations. You can start a free fundraiser for a charity via YouCaring’s simple set-up tools. In order to make your campaign as effective as possible, combine offline fundraising events with online outreach, and take advantage of your own social networks as well as those of your friends and acquaintances.
- 58% of people share information about charities they admire on social media, according to the Huffington Post.
- Annually, 2 billion hours are spent volunteering, according to a statistic cited by Melissa McGlensy in the same article.
- 77% of people surveyed believe that anyone can make a difference by supporting causes, according to the statistics.
Six Strategies for Success
- Talk to the charity your fundraiser will benefit.
Let the nonprofit know about the project you have in mind, and find out if it has any upcoming events or promotions with which you could get involved. Even if the nonprofit doesn’t have anything going on in your area, it may be able to offer advice or knickknacks such as keychains, bumper stickers or logo pens that you can give to supporters. Ask the nonprofit about some of the fundraising campaigns it has conducted in the past, and consider utilizing some of its ideas.
- Host a fundraising event.
If the charity doesn’t have any upcoming events in your area, consider hosting your own event and asking guests to donate online to your crowdfunding campaign. You can get as elaborate as a formal dinner or as casual as an afternoon picnic, but encourage your friends to invite their friends and so on. A fundraising event does require some financial investment beforehand, but you can cut down on overhead expenses by asking local businesses to donate food and other items. Plus, it brings the community together for a good cause. Tailor the event to the community you hope will give to your campaign and ask supporters who are passionate about your cause to help out.
- Hold a competition.
Crowdfunding lends itself to online competitions, particularly on social media. Ask people who benefit from the charity to write posts about its positive impact on their lives, seek out talented writers to volunteer there for a day and write about the experience online, or track down a local celebrity with a lot of social media clout to share. You could build a contest around the best content supporters produce online, or offer an award to the user who gets the most retweets, likes or favorites on their campaign-related post.
- Engage supporters who might not be able to give financially.
One way to engage potential donors is by holding a competition and encouraging them to give their time and skills instead of their money. A food-related charity might consider asking supporters to donate their time to create a specialty dish and then host an event at a local park where the community is invited to buy lunch or dinner from the volunteer vendors. Donate the proceeds to your crowdfunding campaign. Variations of this general model can be modified to fit your supporters’ skills. A sports team could hold a camp, a baker could sell their goods, or an artist could host a workshop. Meanwhile, anyone with a social network can share your link!
- Go door-to-door.
With the rise of do-not-call lists, door-to-door marketing has reemerged in recent years as an alternative to telemarketing, according to a piece by NBC News. Not only can you accumulate donations by going door-to-door, you may also have a chance to talk one-on-one with people who want to get involved and volunteer their time. It can be especially useful with neighbors who you don’t see often or who aren’t on social media. There is strength in numbers, so be sure to bring a buddy with you when you go, and ask supporters to do the same in their own neighborhoods!
- Get your community together.
Some of the most successful charity fundraisers are the ones that use the talents and resources of a group of people. Ask coworkers, friends, members of your gym or club, and parents in your community to get involved. In addition to doing good, fundraisers can be a ton of fun and build relationships with people you may not have known well before. Offline fundraising events should be social as well as effective. The more your volunteers and supporters enjoy what you’re doing, the more likely they are to do more of it, and do it with more enthusiasm. So encourage people to get involved in groups, and plan an event that will get people excited about giving back.
The best way to raise money for charity is by organizing events that have little overhead but get big crowds in attendance. By using crowdfunding to collect donations, your campaign can take on a global following, while offline events engage members of your community. Get a group together, get creative, and be open to new experiences. Check out more fundraising ideas at YouCaring.
Ready to start a charity fundraiser? Create your campaign for free today.