“Crowdfunding?! Are you crazy?! Donors have their plans set for how they give at EOY! We’d only get new donors that don’t renew!”
Nonprofit fundraisers have a love/hate relationship with crowdfunding. But let’s take a step back and look at crowdfunding as a component to a robust, multi-channel, end-of-calendar-year campaign.
In this post we'll break down a multi-channel EOY strategy that includes:
- Solicitations built on a crowdfunding backbone to appeal to unique donor interests while still filling the general fund coffers
- Targeted email strategy to get donors to click
- Peer-to-peer or "online ambassadors"
- Facebook Ads to expand your EOY campaign's reach to new audiences
Create multiple crowdfunding pages that align with your end of year priorities.
Crowdfunding projects are specific & targeted, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be unrestricted. Dig into what your unrestricted funds do. Say there are 3 main priorities of the fund - create a page for each one! Tell stories of how those priorities have impacted lives of those you serve. Then you get the specificity and transparency of crowdfunding, and an opportunity for your donors to show you the unique reasons they give and why they care.
Once you’ve created those pages…how do you get donors there? We can rely on digital channels for the execution as well.
Create a segmented email plan directing donors to crowdfunding pages.
Donors prefer short emails. Email is no longer the place to tell your story, but a place to incite an action. So how do we convince the donor to give? Those crowdfunding pages you just created!
This page set up give you the room to tell your story in an easy to consume, visual manner. With your unique stories broken out in different pages, you already have the content needed for email. Use the most compelling information in the email in order to inspire the click to the page to learn more. Then segment your donor list and send the individuals to just one of the pages you’ve created.
Today's fundraising will always be stronger with a peer-to-peer component. Although EOCY projects are more institutional, make sure you have real people champion this project. Consider using really active donors or volunteers. If you have the budget - use a social listening tool to find people who really care about your mission! The best ambassador is one who has supported you in the past and has strong online influence - via social media or good email contacts. Email from the ambassadors is a critical channel alongside your institutional email.
Be active on social media! But don’t rely on organic reach.
Your donors (and potential donors) are on social. Hopefully many of them follow you! But even those who follow you may not see all your posts, depending on their history of engagement with your page. Facebook ads will ensure more people see your posts. At a minimum, consider ads that go out to those who you are already emailing. The ads will act as a marketing reminder to those who have already received your email. If you’re looking to expand your networks, consider Custom Audiences.
Crowdfunding is more than the reactive campaigns, the restricted campaigns, the campaigns that only bring in mom, dad, and grandma donors of the project teams; it is a structure of giving that provides the story behind the gift that today's donors demand.
We’re at a point where there are multiple digital channels for your fundraising office can leverage. For your EOY campaigns, make sure you’re taking full advantage of all of the digital channels at your fingertips!
Interested in a targeted multi-digital-channel strategy for your EOCY or other upcoming campaigns? Contact us at email@example.com.