Right now I am helping a golf tournament committee with fundraising ideas. This event is for an amazing cause to help foster children go to camp for one week this summer in which they are treated like royalty. I’ve been involved with this tournament for several years and I love to help such a worthy cause.
This year I’ve taken a bit of a different approach to suggesting ideas to help this nonprofit raise money. Like most organizations they have little time and cash to spare and all of the people that I am working with are also volunteering their time and skills. Fundly has made me really try to think outside of the box to use social media fundraising in new and different ways. Here are a few ideas that we are using to promote the tournament.
First of all, we need golfers to have a golf tournament. The good thing is that most golfers know other golfers. We are contacting our faithful participants and asking them to contact their friends to create foursomes. What better way to do this than on Facebook? It’s easy to drop a line and ask a friend if they want to participate in a day on the green. This works much better than a bunch of letters sent through the mail because their contacting their own buddies.
Secondly, we are sending out reminders every two weeks to our Facebook friends about new donations, games on the course and new features that we will have that day. We want to tempt golfers who are on the fence to join us for a great day with wonderful prizes.
The next thing we are using social media for is to ask friends who own businesses or have contacts for corporate sponsors to partner with us to make this day a success. Business owners can donate products or gift certificates to our raffle which will be held at the evening banquet. Corporate sponsors have a foursome, their name and/or logo in event advertising and their logo on different gift products. Once again, relationships are the best way to get support; mass mailers are not.
Another benefit to online communication is that we can easily direct people to the e-mail of the organization we are aiding. They can see pictures of the camp, read letters from the kids and choose to donate to the charity if they are not golfers or can’t participate the day of our event. The bottom line is that the more money we raise, the more kids are able to attend this memorable camp.
Social media has been a great way to keep in communication with our golfers, sponsors and committee members cheaply and effectively. If you want to stay ahead, online fundraising is a must for every charitable organization. It saves time, money and energy. Why not give it a try and brainstorm some new ideas for your own nonprofit!?
This morning Fundly announced that we have achieved two more significant milestones for the company: First off, Fundly landed another $5 million in Series A investment which we will use to build even more cool features for Fundly’s users! We have already hired a team of new awesome developers to make it all happen (you know who you are).
However, I could not think of a better way to celebrate this success in our company’s life than the simultaneous passing of another big milestone: the 1,000+ cause based organizations that use Fundly in the US have now raised a collective $220 million!
Our new investor is Morgenthaler Ventures. Mark Goines has joined Fundly’s board of directors. We are very excited to have him. He was an early investor in consumer finance products such as Mint.com and WePay. The Fundly investor group already included luminaries who invested in social media companies like LinkedIn, Zynga and Twitter. We are now adding Mark’s wealth of financial application experience to the team.
Large non-profits like Teach For America as well as smaller ones like TERI have already discovered the power of social media. You should never allow a donor to drop off a check and then just drive away. When they come to your website to donate to your cause, they already have their hearts and wallets open— this is the peak of engagement and it’s crucial to seize the moment. Adding Fundly to your donation page(s) or setting up a campaign page with Fundly will automatically ask all your donors to spread the word with their friends. As the old saying goes, “You don’t ask; you don’t get.”