Ep 65 | 3 Ways to Jumpstart your Online Fundraising

Now I would love to see every single nonprofit have a blog on their website. Why?

 

Number one, it shares information with your audience that's relevant that might make that decision for is this the nonprofit that I want to be a donor at? Is this the after school program that I want to send my kid to? Is this the food bank, where I as the grocery store want to give, you know, buy extra produce to is this you know, the, the the animal shelter that I want to adopt my pet from. So it helps on so many levels is that the organization I want to volunteer at? It gives people more insight into who you serve, how you serve them success stories you've had highlighting, and I might be jumping a little bit ahead of myself. But yeah gives you the opportunity to highlight your volunteers, your board members, your donors, your students, your pets, your environmental costs, whatever it is. It just builds that authority for you as somebody who really is a leader in the community that you serve, and helps to draw in donors and people of all various stages of your business.

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 Fundraising is always a struggle. Coming up with new ways to interact with your donors and volunteers can be tricky. And now, with events being canceled, it might feel like you're treading water trying to figure out what the best options are. 

I've created a guide that gives you 9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise More Money Online. And in this episode, I'm diving deep into three of them that are in there.

*Please note this episode includes affiliate links. Should you choose to purchase through these links we may receive a small commission. We are only affiliates of product we have tested and used ourselves.

 In this episode you'll learn:

→ Tip #1 – beef up your organization's donation page.
→ Tip #2 – create regular and consistent content.
→ Tip #3 – leverage your email list.

Want to skip ahead?  Here are some key takeaways:

[2:35] Tip #1 – beef up your businesses donation page. This will allow you to take recurring donations, have donors cover your processing fees and get more information about those that become donors.
[9:32] Tip #2 – start creating content on a regular basis. This helps support your donors and the audience you service. Make sure you are the authority in your niche and people are coming to you for the most up to date information that can help them with the problem you solve.
[12:58] Tip #3 – use your email list. Email marketing is a powerful tool. You may have lots of people on your list you haven't reached out to in a while that are ready and willing to be repeat donors. Or people that might be good to re-enroll in your service or participate at your fundraisers.

Resources

[Guide] 9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise More Money Online 
EP 47 | Repurposing Content with Darcy Sullivan
EP 42 | Repurposing Content – Quick Episode
Give WP*

9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise Money Online

Download our free guide to help you get online with your fundraising fast and reach your fundraising goals.

9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise More Money Online pdf

Transcript

[INTRO] Hey everybody, Sami here, your host of the Digital Marketing Therapy podcast. So excited to be here for another episode, where we're going to talk a little bit about ways that nonprofits can raise more money online because that is something that is super needed right now. And I, you know, just feel for you all with having to close your fundraisers cancel your galas, you know, your run walks, whatever it is that you had planned for this summer, going into the fall and even you know, for many organizations that have things planned in the spring. It's difficult and so I wanted to try to support you in figuring out ways that you can raise more money online, and I have a guide that you can get https://thefirstclick.net/fundraise, which is 9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise More Money Online. And today, we're going to pick out three that I think I just wanted to talk a little bit more about in depth. So we're going to talk about three different of the nine in today's episode, but you can check out the interview Tire guide at https://thefirstclick.net/fundraise. They're not all, some of them are techie. They're not all super techie. They're definitely a wide variety of options for you guys to choose. And I want to make it clear, you do not need to do all nine, I highly recommend you don't. But pick out a couple from the guide that makes the most sense for your organization, where you're at and where it's going to help you raise the most money where you're going to be able to get the quickest wins and implement those and go from there. So https://thefirstclick.net/fundraise get the9 Ways for Non-Profits to Raise More Money Online. And with that, let's get into this episode.

[CANNED INTRODUCTION] You're listening to the digital Marketing Therapy Podcast. I'm your host, Sami Bedell-Mulhern. And each week, I bring you tips from myself and other experts, as well as hot seats with small business owners and entrepreneurs to demystify digital marketing and get you on your way to generating more leads and growing your business.

[BODY] Here we go, we're going to talk about three of my, I shouldn't say my favorite, because they're all really good. But three that I wanted to make sure we dive into a little bit deeper. Three of the nine ways you can fundraise online. So if you're a nonprofit that hasn't gotten into the online space yet, I promise you, this podcast is going to be great for you. We have so many episodes coming up that are just going to be great at getting you online, getting you comfortable online, getting you to raise more money, and just getting you to build more audiences that are going to be lifetime fans for you.

Tip #1
And so the first thing that I really want to chat with you about which is number two, in our nine ideas is to beef up your website's donation page.

So a lot of times, this is an afterthought on your website. It's not something that you necessarily maybe spend a lot of time on. But there's a lot of great features that I think people don't think about when it comes to online donations, let alone the fact that it's automated and you don't have do as much work in several of your software programs that you're probably already using have an online donation option. And those automated emails that go out the ability for people to check, you know what they've donated, like all of that stuff is awesome because saving you time saves you money and allows you to do other things and serve your community better.

So, our favorite online interface is Give WP* and we are affiliates for them but I highly recommend them. They're a great software program. They're not the cheapest but they do great work and some of the features that we love are the fact that you can set up recurring donations really easily. So people can give $1, $5, $10, $20 a month whatever on a regular basis. We love that it gives you the option to add the credit card fee so they can absorb that so you don't have to pay that cost. It has a lot of customizable options. If you are somebody that can do a little bit of coding, but it's beautiful either way, and integrates so nicely with so many other credit card processing companies like Stripe or, or PayPal, or Square or authorize, net, whatever you use. So it's super easy. And there's a lot of platforms out there that do that. But we really like Give WPs ability to do that.

And so that just brings up and what we have in the guide is a lot of questions to ask when determining which donation platform you want to use. And so I'm going to run through those really quickly here.

So you want to consider if it does integrate with your current payment processor, there's no reason to go out and get a new payment processor just because the platform that you have doesn't support it. Most likely it will. But just ask and if you reach out to the donation platform you're using, they will probably integrate with it even if it's not easily visible on their website.

Can you take recurring payments, we love having recurring payments. As an option, it just is a no brainer. And it tells you as an organization like I know, I'm going to get $5 every single month from this person. And especially right now reaching out and asking people for smaller recurring payments might be easier than asking for that larger donation. So if I can get 50 people at $5, right through social posts, and whatnot, and you'll definitely want to listen to next week's episode where we talk about using social media, for fundraising. You know, that can add up quickly to a good amount of money, and then you know, roughly every month, kind of what's going to happen, you'll have to check your retention rates and all that we can talk about all that in another episode, but it helps to know that you've got a certain amount of money coming in not all platforms, and not all credit card processors allow for recurring payment and that has to do with the security for your customers. So you definitely want it that's something that's important to you. You want to make sure that that is an option that they provide.

And then like we talked about, will it allow your donors to pay the processing fee, again, especially if you're doing smaller donations and with your with a platform like Square, for example, that might charge a per-transaction fee. And having that option can really help recoup quite a bit of cost for your organization. So we definitely recommend a platform that can allow that to happen.

Do you have customizable forms so a lot of platforms have an iframe what's called an iframe. So it's a code that you put into your website, and then it just populates that into your web page. A lot of times, if you're working with things on the back end of like a CRM or a donor software, you don't have as much customization on your form as you might want for the look and the feel. And that's totally fine. It doesn't have to be fully customized, but maybe you want to do something a little bit different. Or maybe you need to take membership dues, and donors and sponsorships, and you need to be able to make them all look different so that you can tweak those to your specific audience. So having forms that are customizable is great.

Beyond that having forms that you can customize the information is also important. Maybe you want to know who referred them, you know, so you can give them credit. Maybe you're running a competition with your students that you serve, and you know, they're selling, or they're going out and selling things for $1. I don't know, whatever. If they could put their name in, and you can attribute it to them that might be something that's important to you. Maybe you want to know that they are a sponsorship for a run-walk that you're doing, or an online auction that you're doing. So having customizable forms so that you can gather information about your donors is also super important.

And then having a conversation about does the form whatever your donation platform that you're in using does the form integrate, like do they talk to each other so that the information that you get can be easily utilized and tracked as well.

And then, you know, just the easiest thing is just as your existing donor platform have an option for you to use. So that's the easiest barrier to get through, right? Like use the platform you're already used to use the platform you're already comfortable with. And maybe no, it doesn't allow a lot of customization but at least you have something out there that will work while you work through exactly what you need it to be exactly what you need it to do. All of that good stuff. And so the biggest thing I want to say about this is, don't get overwhelmed with tech, make a list of your must have features. And then as you start to go out and research, tick the boxes and just make a chart that says okay, yep, this one takes the most boxes. We're gonna go with that one, take it and move forward. Okay. But having that website donation page, especially now is a great way for you to send it out quickly in an email to your donors, send it out on social media, send it out to your volunteers, whatever it might be. Having that donation page makes it really easy to process donations and get more money coming through your bank account. And having automated receipts, all of that good stuff, it's super easy. And I highly recommend that you take a look at your donation page if you haven't done it in a while and set one up if you don't have one now. Okay, so that's number one.

Tip #2
The second one that I want to share with you guys today is number three in the guide, and that is start creating content on a regular basis.

Now, I know that this feels overwhelming, it feels overwhelming to everybody, nonprofit, or general business. Creating content on a regular basis is scary. And when I say regular basis, I love to see content coming out on a weekly basis from organizations, but it also is quality over quantity. So consistency is key.

So figure out for your organization, what you can do consistently. And by content here, I'm speaking specifically about a blog. Now I would love to see every single nonprofit have a blog on their website. Why?

Number one, it shares information with your audience that's relevant that might make that decision for is this the nonprofit that I want to be a donor at? Is this the after school program that I want to send my kid to? Is this the food bank, where I as the grocery store want to give, you know, buy extra produce to is this you know, the, the the animal shelter that I want to adopt my pet from. So it helps on so many levels is that the organization I want to volunteer at? It gives people more insight into who you serve, how you serve them success stories you've had highlighting, and I might be jumping a little bit ahead of myself. But yeah gives you the opportunity to highlight your volunteers, your board members, your donors, your students, your pets, your environmental costs, whatever it is. It just builds that authority for you as somebody who really is a leader in the community that you serve, and helps to draw in donors and people of all various stages of your business.

Now, it also helps on an SEO front, which is search engine optimization, because it shares more information about what your organization is about, which helps Google understand well, all search engines understand who they should be serving your content to when they're searching for specific words. So we highly recommend that you have content coming out on a regular basis. Now, the other benefit is that you can have a call to action and each post that's going to drive people either to more information to a donation page asking them to sign up for your email list. But it gives you an opportunity to get them to take the next step so that we can move forward with your organization and get more engaged, become raving fans, and continue to share what you do with other people.

We also love that it gives you content for all of your social media. So social media is one of the things that's in the guide. We're not going to talk about it today. But it is in the guide. And by creating content on a regular basis, you then have your social media posts that you can share. One post can turn into six different posts and we have some podcasts already on repurposing content, but we will be having more coming out as we go and I will link up those in the show notes for this episode. But it gives you you know, you could come up with three or four different posts that you can use on your social media for the next coming weeks. And it just helps to create that for so you have less that you need to produce separately from that. So content on a regular basis, I love it. And hopefully now you have members on your team that might be able to take a little bit of time to work on that, as opposed to, you know, maybe the events that you guys can't put on.

So that's number three. I'm sorry, number two, here, number three in the guide.

Tip #3

Okay, so the last one that I really wanted to talk about today is number six in our guide, which is leverage your email list. I am a huge fan of email marketing. I think it's extremely impactful and important. But what happens with a lot of organizations is they don't reach out to their list on a regular basis. They only reach out to them when it's an annual fund time or when it's time for an event or a fundraiser or time to buy tickets time to donate. Now, don't get me wrong, you can include that information on every single email and in fact, you should you should have links that take people directly to your donation page where if they feel compelled by that particular email, they can, they can just go ahead and make that donation, you want to make that easy for them.

But what we want to do is take that content that you've been creating on a regular basis and email that out to your list as well. We want to share things with them that are just educational or inspiring. They don't always have to be tied to a specific ask. And what this does is keeps you Top of Mind with your donors, sponsors, businesses, volunteers, so maybe you have volunteers that haven't been around, haven't volunteered for your organization for six months. Then they get an email and they're like, I used to love working with that organization. I don't know why I stopped, but they do stop. And that could be the thing that ignites them again, or maybe you have a business owner that suddenly has an influx of a certain product or service that you need. And by putting that out there by emailing them on a regular basis, it triggers for them. Oh yeah. I have all of a sudden, these, all these, all these shirts that are seconds that I can't sell in my store, because there's some minor flaw that's totally non-existent to anybody else, but they can't use it right? I'm gonna donate it to this organization because I know that they can use it for their youth program. I don't know. These are not very good examples, but I think you get what I'm coming after.

So I love emailing your list on a weekly basis. And I love encouraging and interacting with them in that way. And having small asks, remember one email one topic that you can encourage them and get them to participate, to donate, to hear stories about your population that you serve, and to know ways to give back because here's what I'll say about what I my experience has been with nonprofits when I've been working with them as volunteers or as a donor. I don't always know exactly what you need, and you may feel like you're saying it over and over and over again. But there are so many messages that are going out that it's hard to really process everything. And so the more and more you talk about kind of your needs your story who you are, share insightful information. Maybe you're sharing statistics about community engagement. Or maybe you're sharing statistics about, you know, the environment and in small ways that we can make an impact. Maybe you're sharing different mentoring ideas to support other kids in your community. Maybe you're sharing musical songs that people can work on at home. Maybe it's you know, words of inspiration, or you know, your daily Bible verse in whatever it is. Email Marketing is a great way and I guarantee you, you have a large list, so utilize it, and you know, we can talk more about segmenting and how to keep them all separate, but, but I think having an email list is strong and super important.

[CONCLUSION] Okay, so those are the three things that I wanted to talk about with you guys today. And those are only three of the nine that we've got. So do you remember what they are? Should I run them with you again, so beefing up your donation page on your website, making sure it's set up and ready to go. Creating content on a regular basis to encourage your audience, to learn more about you to become an authority in your field, to provide information for your social media, as well as your email marketing and to start sending emails to your list on a regular basis.

I hope that these three things were important and I know that the guide will be super important to you as well. You can check that out at https://thefirstclick.net/fundraise or head on over to the show notes at https://thefirstclick.net/podcast to get all of the links there as well. Thank you so much for listening to this episode. I'm so excited to be back. And I hope you'll subscribe wherever you listen, so you don't miss out on a single episode. We come to you every Tuesday and head on over to https://thefirstclick.net/fundraise. Grab that guide and share this with any nonprofit that you know might need some help raising funds these days. Okay, see you at the next one.

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