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May 22, 2024 | Categories DonorPerfect Fundraising Software, Featured

Crowdfunding Made Easy

I have five hours a week and no budget. Here’s how I fundraise.

Fundraising is a team sport, no matter what your budget, staff, or resources look like. When you’re a volunteer or a one-person fundraising shop, it’s especially important to build a network of champions to help lighten your workload. 

Who do you ask for help, and how can you be confident that you’re not demanding too much of your volunteers? As a former full-time fundraiser and current volunteer for my community choir, I’ve found there are a variety of ways to answer these questions, depending on the resources you have available.  
Crowdfunding is a fantastic way to ease into community building since it helps connect you to networks of people who are already happy to support your mission. Here are four tips for using crowdfunding and peer-to-peer fundraising to ignite your community’s passion for your cause.

1. Celebrate birthdays, anniversaries, and special occasions

Many people enjoy supporting a cause that’s close to them instead of/in addition to receiving presents for special occasions. If you make it easy for your donors to include you in their celebrations, you’ll set them up for a meaningful and memorable experience that deepens their connection to your mission.

Start by creating a user-friendly, step-by-step guide with clear and easy instructions for using your crowdfunding platform and launching a campaign. Create plug-and-play templates as needed so all your donors need to do is add a few details before they hit the ground running.

DonorPerfect users: Get an overview of your crowdfunding features with this quick video!

Not a DonorPerfect user? Get a demo and see how you can easily add crowdfunding to your fundraising strategy.

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Remind your supporters in your next few newsletters that they have this option. Once you have a campaign going, feature it as an example of how easy it is to be a champion for your mission. You might even drive more giving to the featured campaign as an added bonus!

2. Spark a little friendly competition

Do you have friendly (or even friendly-ish) local rivalries you can take advantage of? High school sports teams, competing businesses, summer kickball leagues, and other community groups might jump at the chance to prove themselves better than their competitors by raising more money for your mission.

Remember the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? Invoking the spirit of friendly competition and giving participants the option to engage however they can is a powerful and effective technique for grassroots fundraisers. The Ice Bucket Challenge raised over $115 million for ALS research, resulting in two new FDA-approved treatments. That’s the power of peer-to-peer fundraising!

Want to take your crowdfunding to the next level? With Raisin, you can expand beyond individual peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns and into events, races, and more. Check it out!

A preview of organizing events with Raisin.

3. Incentivize participation

Why should I support your cause if this is the first time I’m hearing about it?

While charitable giving in itself offers donors a number of health, emotional, and communal benefits, catching eyes with a crowdfunding campaign requires a bit more fanfare. What are some ways you can make it fun to jump on a peer-to-peer bandwagon? Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Give a shoutout to new donors on your social media pages and tag them (with their permission, of course!) to say thanks and celebrate their gifts
  • Offer a “behind the scenes” tour of your nonprofit to the first 25 donors
  • Send CDs, pins, or commemorative tokens to people who hit specific participation milestones
  • Create a video message from a local celebrity to send to donors and volunteers, or a message of encouragement to give on social media

Interested in more ideas for building community around your mission? Join our FREE, virtual community conference, Spark! Register now for two days of learning on June 4 and 5.

A graphic to register for DPCC 2024.

4. Use your crowdfunding platform for longer-term goals

Crowdfunding pages are increasingly used for semi-permanent goals and are housed on nonprofits’ websites. It’s a user-friendly way to give and offers your community valuable experience navigating your crowdfunding platform before they run their campaigns.

Have a regular fundraising need? A crowdfunding page is a great way to display progress toward bigger goals like running an annual summer camp, replacing outdated equipment, or covering operational expenses for specific projects and programs.

Crowdfunding and social media are as perfect a match as peanut butter and jelly. Want to learn more about how to use Instagram to your advantage? Check out our blog, How to Engage New Donors with Instagram Storytelling!

A girl on her phone with likes and hearts popping up.

Crowdfunding is a great way to add new supporters to your community. Want to grow your donor base even more? We teamed up with nonprofit digital strategist Dana Snyder to create the new guide, Your Personalized Growth Plan to Find New Donors. Just answer five quick questions for a growth path that’s tailored to your unique needs, or download our PDF guide below to choose your next steps!

Get Your Guided Growth Plan

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Meet the author: Emily Zacek

Emily Zacek joined the DonorPerfect team as a copywriter in January, 2022. She graduated from the University of Michigan in 2014 with degrees in flute performance and organizational studies, and her undergraduate thesis focused on labor activity trends in American arts nonprofits. She brings a...

Learn more about Emily Zacek
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