Fundraising for your mission or cause can be both an exciting and challenging endeavor. At times, it may feel like it’s never ending, but it doesn’t have to be.
Target audiences for your fundraising
Listed below are the target audiences for your fundraising as well as ideas for generating results. Keep in mind that corporations or individual donors who give large annual donations and the consumer who commits to a recurring $10 a month are both important. Diversifying your fundraising sources helps reduce the risk of a huge potential loss. In addition, large institutional donors usually give one time, and most other donors leave after their first gift—up to 50% in the first year. There are ways an organization can stay connected, keep donors engaged and drive additional giving.
While the relationships with corporations can take longer to establish, they can yield strong results for years to come. Businesses give through matching gifts, corporate sponsorships, volunteering and skills sharing and in-kind donations. Here are some considerations for securing corporate sponsorships:
Build Your Prospect List – Identify businesses that share your values and align to your mission should be your target. You can determine this through research, by asking your connections and/or by networking with business stakeholders at industry events. Also, keep in mind that your organization’s suppliers and vendors also could be partners.
Outreach – Reach out through personal connections you have. If you don’t have a relationship with someone internally or a decision maker in the fundraising area, you usually can submit a request through their website or send a direct email to the organization.
Pitch – When you pitch, make sure you outline what the benefit to the organization will be. The stronger the opportunity for the business, the better your chance of securing a relationship.
Non-Financial Components – Make sure to include some non-financial components of a partnership such as volunteer time, PR support and more.
Communicate about Impact – Once you’ve secured a corporation’s support, make sure you communicate about the impact of their donation and continuously show gratitude.
According to Stanford Social and Innovation Review, the average smaller nonprofit raises 36% of its annual overall income from individual donors. Individual donors give about $435 a year on average, whether big or small, online or offline, recurring or one-time.
Plan – It’s important to begin with an individual fundraising plan. Outline what your fundraising goals are and how many donors you’d like to secure.
Identify Prospects – You should identify the right people who care deeply about your cause or mission. People who have used your services or know someone who has are good candidates. It could also be personal friends or connections to your board members, your staff or volunteers. Individuals who follow you on social media who haven’t donated could be good partners too.
Connect – Next, connect with them personally for coffee, for example, or via a phone call or Zoom and share the impact of your work. Research shows that nearly two-thirds of donors say that understanding the impact of their donation would encourage them to give more, according to Nonprofits Source.
Engage – As you move forward, keep in mind that donors who volunteer, learn, network, and come to events are more likely to give. Host donor stewardship events, offer volunteer options that give them ways to use their skills and expertise and make sure you share stories of success.
Share Success – Storytelling and sharing the impact of your mission helps others see the influence you’re having and enables you speaks to their emotions. Non-profit organizations could increase donations by nearly 50% if they are more transparent about how the donations are spent, according to a study by Giftcoin.
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