For every great cause, there are the funds needed to keep it going. Nonprofits are called “nonprofits” for a reason – we do good things, things that usually don’t pay for themselves. Whether you run a local sports team, community theatre or food bank, fundraising not only keeps you running – it shapes what and how much you can do, making it a vital part of your operations. As you already know, every dollar counts, and every fundraising campaign is carefully planned. Whether your fundraiser involves selling event tickets or laundry detergent, knowing how to use online resources can provide a significant boost to your bottom line.
The Internet, and social media in particular, has an amazing ability to spread information to a wider audience than previous generations could have even imagined. As part of a nonprofit, it only makes sense to use all of the resources available to you, and the majority of online promotional opportunities for nonprofits cost absolutely nothing! That means sales derived from your online presence will generally have no cost for your agency and, therefore, will represent pure profit.
So how do you get started? If your nonprofit doesn’t have a Facebook page, Instagram and Twitter account, then you should set one up immediately. People love hearing about the good things that good causes are doing, especially in a social media feed filled with negativity. From a fundraising perspective, you need to be building up your relationships with your supporters all year long. Not only do people love hearing about good causes, they also want to know that the causes they support are actually doing good things. If they have regular evidence that you are making a difference, they will be much more likely to say “yes” during any fundraiser.
A good rule of thumb for Facebook updates is twice a week, at least. If you have noteworthy updates more often, then be sure to post them! It’s a good idea to post photos with descriptions of what’s going on to really catch the attention of your supporters and make them feel truly involved. However, if you don’t have any big updates with photos, just make sure to post something that is positive and keeps your nonprofit in their thoughts. Twitter and Instagram update intervals can vary, depending on what you have to say, the tone you want to set and how many photos your particular nonprofit produces regularly.
When your fundraiser comes along, you will be perfectly positioned to not only gain funds from your supporters, but get their help in spreading the word. Let me emphasize just how incredible this is – an email from a friend or family member letting them know that your incredible organization needs help can be more effective than a dozen emails from you. It can not only increase your fundraising sales, but increase your online followers, which is a cycle that will help your nonprofit grow exponentially in the coming years.