Fundraising on social media on a shoestring

Friends With Money Blog

Whether you’re looking to increase donations or recruit supporters to participate in fundraising challenges, social media is among the most effective and direct ways to connect supporters with a cause. With 80% of millennials (those born between 1980 and 2000) using social media several times a day, every day, the potential to reach new supporters will only continue to grow. That’s why we’ve partnered with Social Misfits Media to create Friends with Money – a guide to fundraising on social media. In it we explore how charities of all shapes and sizes can use social media to reach more people, inspire more action and raise more money.

Friends with money

In the past 12 months, more than $100 million has been donated to good causes on JustGiving via Facebook integration. So even if donations don’t take place directly on a social media platform, social media can be used to distribute the messages that encourage and inspire people to donate to a cause or sponsor a friend.

Social media can play a role in each stage of the fundraising process, from identifying and cultivating new supporters to solicitation and acknowledgement. Every major social media platform allows you to connect people directly with your organisation and reach new supporters through their networks.

Here are four ways social media can help to facilitate fundraising, on a small budget:

1. Identification

Exploring social media is completely free. Search relevant hashtags on Twitter to find people who are already talking about your cause. Find related pages or groups on Facebook and LinkedIn and strike up conversations with people who post often. Also, take note of people who like, comment and share your posts – within your network there are people who could become key advocates for you, if given the right support.

2. Cultivation

Share stories whenever and wherever you can. Use low cost videos (Vine or Instagram for example), images, blogs and posts and keep your audience updated as the story unfolds. Show supporters exactly how they’ll be helping if they decide to give to your cause. This transparency helps create trust between you and your supporters, which is key to creating relationships that last.

3. Solicitation

Getting set up on online donation and mobile giving platforms may have a small price tag, but you’ll undoubtedly reap the benefits of a straightforward conversion funnel. Having multiple donation processes also allows you to optimize your ask based on the particular campaign, project or event you are raising money for.

Consider where people will be when deciding where to direct potential donors. If they’re likely to be browsing from the office, for example, a link to your fundraising page may see the best conversion rates. But if they’re snapping photos on their mobile phones, like the #nomakeupselfie, a text donation will be the most natural route.

4. Acknowledgement

Create social media content to give donors a personal, public recognition and insight into how they are helping you create change. This can be done without spending a penny, such as a blog post detailing how the money will be spent, or a photo of a beneficiary you have touched.

Take pictures when you are with supporters and ask event participants to send you photos that they take themselves. When you share on social media, tell others who that fundraiser is and applaud them for what they have achieved. Lastly, include a call to action in thank you posts to let others know exactly how they can get involved.

Learn more about fundraising on social media

Get your free copy of Friends with Money to read top tips from the experts at Facebook and Twitter, and learn the secret of success from Rotary Global Swimathon, Child’s i Foundation, Cancer Research UK and Cystic Fibrosis Ireland – four charities that have cracked the art of fundraising on social media.

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Passionate about using digital channels to communicate with and for charities, Kirsty is a freelance digital communications specialist and accredited trainer. A regular blogger for Third Sector and other sector publications, she is always keen to share her experiences and knowledge with others and help them achieve their goals. She has helped hundreds of charity staff hone their social media and digital marketing skills over the years and understand the importance of good content. She is a trustee of the Small Charities Coalition and in 2016 won a CharityComms Inspiring Communicator Award.