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Many of us have been there. Inspired by the “holiday giving” spirit we often wish we could give back to the community or a nonprofit organization. However, with the strains of traveling and buying presents for friends/family, it is easy to feel the financial strains of the holidays. As a result, many of us find ourselves unable to stretch our pocketbook and make a donation.

Problem solved! This year, we came up with an idea. To show each and every one of our clients just how thankful we are for them, we have decided to give back. Today through December 31, 2012, for each “Like” Guest Relations Marketing receives on Facebook, we will donate $1 to our non-profit clients. Up to $10,000.

So, all you have to do is give us a like and help spread the word by sharing with your network.

Remember: 10,000 Likes = $10,000 donation!

We made a quick video. Check it out:

 

We wish you a happy Thanksgiving and joyous holiday season.

Yesterday we promised to discuss the 2012 eNonprofit Benchmarks Study’s findings on online fundraising. And here at Guest Relations Marketing we always provide on our promises.

As the economy has improved, general giving has increased. As a result, these numbers can be directly correlated to the incline in the number of online donations that most nonprofit organizations are witnessing.

However, it is important to understand the trends in how people are giving and through what mediums. Below you will find a synopsis of some of the important takeaways as we explain what these mean to your organization.

Courtesy of eNonprofit Benchmarks Study

Takeaway # 4

On average, 35% of online revenue was sourced to direct email appeals. The remaining 65% came from other sources, such as unsolicited web giving and peer referrals.

What this mean for you

A majority of online giving is coming from sources other than email. As a result organizations should NEVER exclude providing additional opportunities for people to donate. Consider unsolicited web giving and peer referrals as other great sources for fundraising.

How can you increase peer referrals? Social sites that promote sharing and make it easy for people to talk about your organization provide excellent word of mouth marketing opportunities. If you aren’t in these mediums (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) than you should consider doing so immediately.

Courtesy of eNonprofit Benchmarks Study

Takeaway # 5 

While one-time gifts remain the largest source of online revenue for participants, online revenue from monthly giving is growing at a much faster rate.

What this means for you

While one-time gifts are generally of higher value than monthly giving, keep in mind that the total dollar value for continuous donations will be higher. Consider establishing brand loyalty amongst your fans and provide opportunities for them to give over and over again throughout the year.

Maybe this is done through a series of events or establishing a monthly loyalty plan. Either way, keeping your organization top of mind will promote continuous giving.

Encouraging and promoting online fundraising isn’t always an easy task. Thankfully social media has enabled organizations multiple channels to spread the word.

Interested in how most nonprofits stack up in the social realm? Check in tomorrow when we summarize the benefits of having a strong social media presence.

While there are many differences between not-for-profit and for-profit businesses, there is one thing that remains the same – they both require funding for programs and both face increasing competition for those dollars.

September is designated as National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.  Historically, CURE Childhood Cancer has done little to promote this to their followers or local market.

Despite the terrible economic times of 2009 and no budget for external media, Guest Relations Marketing developed a fund-raising program for CURE to coincide with the national promotion.

The Promotion

The aim of the CURE fundraising program was simple: to honor 30 kids, one for each day in the month of September, with each committed to raising $1,000 to benefit CURE Childhood Cancer. The promotion centered around capitalizing on the momentum of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month to raise awareness and money for CURE to help fund their mission, as well as honoring children who have personally had childhood cancer.

CURE reached out to families and received an overwhelming response to those wanting to participate, share their child’s story and reach out to their communities. In total, we honored 57 children throughout the month of September – some had beat the disease, some were in the midst of treatments, some had lost the battle.  Each family shared their own touching story and child’s photo.

Online and social media drove the promotion from a marketing standpoint. A page was created on the brand website, and each child featured on the homepage for “their day.” A personal fundraising page was created for each child on FirstGiving (an online donations website), where their personal story & photo was shared with the world. On their day, each child was also featured on the CURE Blog, as well as on Twitter (@CUREchildcancer) and Facebook Page.  The families also had the option to submit a list of email contacts to receive a series of 3 emails leading up to their child’s day to further help keep it top-of-mind.

The Results

The results were overwhelming! By identifying and activating the Zealots for CURE Childhood Cancer, we were able to engage new groups of people in a personal & connected way. The communications and participation was personal and motivating. And, the fact that it was driven purely by social media is truly a testament to the power of referral and creating viral communities.

  • Children honored: 57
  • Funds raised: +$171,000 (nearly 5.5 times more than our goal of $30,000)
  • 2,204 individual donors in the month of September alone (nearly as many as for 2008 in total)
  • September 2009 the most successful month of all-time for individual donations for CURE
  • Brand website Visitors grew by 30%
  • Page Views were 7.25 times higher
  • Facebook Fans increased by 27%
  • Email database grew by 41%
  • Twitter followers increased by 6.5 times

We know that activating “zealots” is the surest practice of marketing.  It is gratifying to see it come to fruition for such a noble cause as CURE Childhood Cancer. See more at curechildhoodcancer.org.

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