Online fundraising: Helping you help yourself

No matter how big or small your operation, what your operation entails, or what you are raising money for, getting your message out online matters. And, with more of your target audience coming online, it’ll matter even more tomorrow than it does today.

We have been helping Cluny Farm Center, a working farm community looking after adults living with intellectual disabilities, to raise money in a variety of different ways for their goal of becoming a self-sufficient, more sustainable operation.

These fund-raising activities have included a number of different arms: raising money to get their dairy operational, selling cookies baked by their residents, as well as increasing the yield of their organic farm and selling its produce. Through Facebook, their website, and word-of-mouth, this has been a reasonably successful drive, with 2020 seeing a lot more happening.

If you are in the non-profit fundraising space, here are a few key considerations:

  1. Relationships matter - Cultivate your donors through good and careful user interaction. Online fundraising is still fundraising. 
  2. You have to have a plan - Don’t think that it’ll just happen because you’re now online. Have a plan. Know what is coming next.
    • Build your list and talk to your people.
    • Know which platform you’ll be using and when to use it.
    • Schedule your social and online media to make sure it happens.
  3. Not every communication should be an ask - Talk to your donors. Tell them about your successes (and even failures). Gratitude matters too, so tell donors when they’re making a difference.

Simple things that work offline also work online. But mostly, tell people why they should donate. If you’re doing good work, tell them the story and they’ll feel your sincerity.

People like doing good, and your fundraising might just be the opportunity they’re looking for.

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Online fundraising: Helping you help yourself