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3 Online Fundraising Ideas All Associations Should Try

The next time your association is looking for new ways to bring in a stream of revenue and fulfill your association’s needs, consider hosting an online fundraiser.

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Looking to start a new project, but don’t have the funds to get it on its feet? We’ve all been there. According to a poll by Association Adviser, 16% of associations claim on of their best sources of non-dues revenue comes in the form of charitable donations. That’s right, associations rely on the do-gooders of the world to lift them up and support their goals. But securing donations isn’t as easy as it sounds. How do you get people to give back? What is the best way to reach a wide audience that will donate to your association?

Hosting an online fundraiser might be the answer. In the 2018 Online Giving Statistics report from Nonprofit Source, the total amount of charitable giving increased 4.1% in 2016 with an expected increase of 4.6% in 2017. The numbers are only looking up from here in 2018, so you need to make sure your association is on top of this fundraising trend.

If your association is trying to raise funds and is looking for a better platform with a larger reach, hosting an online fundraiser is for you. There’s tons of different ways to host an online fundraiser, but you want the best ideas to bring in the top amount of reach. Here’s 3 online fundraising ideas, tips, and strategies your association can try out- and hopefully score some serious revenue with!

Optimized campaigns

Before getting into any ideas, it’s important to talk about the value of having an optimized online fundraiser. Optimization is key, especially when it comes to online fundraisers.

Think about it this way: Collecting donations from your audience is a lot harder to achieve when your fundraising platform is impossible to navigate. How will donors know where to donate if they can’t figure out the fundraising page? You need to make sure your association’s fundraising web page is fully optimized and easy to navigate for donors. The optimization of your web page can make or break the donation rate for your fundraiser.

Before executing any fundraising ideas, worry about optimization first. You can host your online donation page on your website (and optimize it the same as your website optimization).Or, if you’re looking for an online fundraising platform that’s a little more hands-off, you can choose from a variety of funding sites.

Using a funding site is great because it removes the hassle of keeping your web page online, optimized, and running without putting the stress on your association. You have an entire team of professionals backing your fundraiser and pushing for maximum donation possibilities.

But that’s not all- you also need to make sure your fundraising site is optimized for mobile devices. There are over 4 billion mobile device users throughout the world. An astronomical number with serious power- and that power needs to be available to your association. Without a mobile-friendly fundraising site, you’re missing out on some serious revenue.

Make sure mobile users can donate and share your fundraising site by taking the necessary steps to optimize your page for mobile. This means making a mobile version of your fundraiser page, creating text-to-donate options, and creating subscription lists for mobile users. Make it impossible for mobile users to get lost on your fundraising page. Once your fundraising web page is optimized, you can start generating amazing fundraising ideas and get the ball rolling on fundraised revenue.

1. Crowdfunding

Looking for a way to increase donations while also saving time? With the power of crowdfunding, you can.What is crowdfunding? Well, it’s a way of raising funds for an organization or general fundraiser that involves the collective efforts of audience members. For associations, crowdfunding works well when put into the hands of your members.

But how do you get your members on board? Think about sites like Gofundme and Kickstarter. These sites provide a shareable platform that collects small amounts of money from a wide audience. This is great for people looking to donate to a good cause, but have a small amount of funds to work with.

Your association can encourage members to share your fundraiser page with others. This can be done through email and social media promotion. Or, you can also encourage their participation through incentives like content offers and event discounts. Using crowdfunding takes the large burden of donating high sums of money off of your members and provides reasonable options to help raise money.

2. Email campaigns

According to Statista, around 269 billion emails are sent every day. That number alone is enough to make anyone’s head spin .In addition, Radicati’s 2016 Email Statistics report claims by the year 2020 the expected amount of people using email will reach 3 billion. That’s more than the amount of people living in both North and South America combined.

So, if you’re wondering if your association should hop on board the email fundraising trend, the answer is a strong yes. Sending out email campaigns to ask for donations is a great way to both engage audiences and spread the word about your association’s fundraiser. With email promotions, you can be assured your fundraiser is directly reaching a wider selection of people.

When it comes to setting up donation emails, personalization goes a long way. In fact, personalization in emails goes a long way in every situation. According to the Hubspot blog, emails with personalized subject lines are 22.2% more likely to be opened. Even better, personalized tokens are simple to implement.

Using personalization in your email subject line could be a game changer when it comes to increased donations. By using personalized tokens helps you relate back to your audience and could encourage a donation for your fundraiser. Consider incorporating email campaigns as an idea to boost online fundraiser revenue.

3. Donor incentives

While we touched on this briefly in idea #1, the idea of donor incentives deserves its very own category. Member incentives are often used by associations in terms of member referral programs. Your members bring in a certain amount of new members and they have access to exclusive offers, discounts, and benefits. But, why not incorporate these incentives into your online fundraiser? Including donor incentives is an easy way to get others excited about raising funds for your association.

You can upgrade your donors based on the amount they donate. This can mean many things for your association. Upgrading could involve certain discounts, merchandised items, or personal communication from people within your association. Have a platform where you can share your donor’s work? This can be used as an upgrade incentive. You can also create fundraiser-specific content to use an incentives for donors. This is great to market towards members. If they can gain access to valuable information about an interest in their field of work while also donating to a good cause. Create content that can be easily marketed for your online fundraiser. Then, when someone donates a specific amount, you can take down their contact information (name, email, etc) and send out exclusive content (thereby giving them an incentive while also engaging them with your association!)So, there you have it.

Three different ideas to incorporate into your association’s first (or next) online fundraiser- including specific ways to optimize your fundraiser for top performance.The next time your association is looking for new ways to bring in a stream of revenue and fulfill your association’s needs, consider hosting an online fundraiser.