Hullo, Fundraising Fans! It’s time for some real talk; do you ever ask your regular donors for money and wonder if you’re being a bit… annoying about it? Hey, we get it; your cause is amazing, you need to raise money in order to keep on saving the world. And if you don’t ask, you don’t get, right? But there’s a really fine line between prompting your supporters to dig a little deeper, and annoying them into hitting that big ol’ “Unsubscribe” button. Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Feast your peepers on our 5 Penny Tips to help you get fundraising without accidentally driving your donors away.
Charity Fundraising Tip #1: Don’t Mither
(Edit: for the benefit of the GivePenny Brums and Southerners who don’t know proper words 🙄)
Yeah, we know – this tip is straight from the mouth of Captain Obvious. But it’s easily done; imagine a follower of your charity is subscribed to all of your marketing materials; they’ve given you their email, they’ve followed you on social media. Now imagine you’re launching a big campaign so you blast it across all channels. Within the space of a few hours, your donor has potentially received an email, seen a Tweet, a Facebook ad, got a notification that you’ve added it to your Instagram stories and maybe received a direct mail flyer – all repeating the same message. With that in mind, you might want to hold off firing another round of emails and social posts on the same subject for a couple of days.
The trick is to remind donors you exist without explicitly asking for money. Split up your communications with other content. This tactic is particularly great for social media; talk about something positive, share an inspiring news story that’s related to your cause. Your big campaign might be in the back of their mind from the last time they heard about it a few days ago – seeing you pop up on their Twitter feed is a great way to remind your donors about you, without turning them off with another money request.
Charity Fundraising Tip #2: The Right Time, The Right Place
So now we agree it’s best not to pop the question too often, when is a good time to ask for money?
You’re more likely to be successful if you ask for cash shortly after payday, especially if you want people to subscribe to a direct debit. For most people in the UK, this is monthly, and usually on or around the last working day of the month. So to optimise your chances of success, we recommend asking your contacts for money around the first working day of the month.
Think about where you’re asking, too! Consider your points of engagement; what are people doing when they see your message? Are you interrupting them when they’re busy, or inspiring them when they’re feeling bored? Try dropping your donation request when someone is idly scrolling through Instagram on their commute to work, or checking their email inbox on a slow Sunday evening.
Charity Fundraising Tip #3: Think Big Picture
Just like aggressive sales techniques, some fundraising techniques are effective at getting a one-off donation, but not for long-term engagement. Guilt-tripping, pressuring and other pushy tactics might get you a larger one-off donation, or even a direct debit signup… that gets cancelled two months down the line.
Focus on converting your donors into lifelong advocates to your charity instead. You do this by creating a consistently positive donation experience, which leaves your donors feeling a strong emotional connection to your brand. Overall, making your donors feel valued -even if their contributions are small – is more important than trying to squeeze a few more quid out of them.
Charity Fundraising Tip #4: Turn Donors into Fundraisers
Try asking your donors to help you raise money more than just giving it to you.
That same donor who gives you £10 a month has the potential to transform into a Fundraiser and raise hundreds more. If someone feels good about giving a little to your cause, they’ll feel incredible about raising a lot! They just need someone like you, to encourage them to get started and support them through their fundraising journey.
Our own little charity sponsorship platform is completely free for Fundraisers to enjoy and offers a whole array of ways people can raise money for charity. From charity gaming to running a virtual marathon, from cycling to adding tracks to a Spotify playlist.
Penny Tip: If you’d like to really give your fundraising a huge boost, why not set up one of our award-winning charity virtual events?
Charity Fundraising Tip #5: Say Thank You
Don’t just write it, say it. Generic automatic reply text isn’t good enough anymore -go video!
We’re not saying you have to blow all your marketing budget on a professionally-filmed, beautifully edited, Baz Luhrmann-directed piece of cinematography. A quick video filmed in selfie-mode on your phone and shared to your social media Stories will do the trick. You have the technology – so use it!
We find donors respond very well to a bit of (virtual) human interaction. One of our most successful campaigns featured a “thank you for taking part” video starring some ladies who benefit from the hospice’s services, but if it’s not appropriate to share the faces of the people your charity helps, find your most enthusiastic member of staff and get them in front of the camera.
In need of more charity fundraising tips? We’re full of ideas! Give us a call on 0121 271 0303 – our Tara’s always up for a natter about fundraiser engagement.
Good luck out there!
Team GivePenny x