How a Fundraising Consultant Can Help With Your Next Fundraiser

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How do you know if you need a fundraising consultant? What services can a consultant offer?

In this article, we’ll go over some of the ways a fundraising consultant can help your nonprofit, but first, let’s define what a fundraising consultant is and what role they’ll play in your fundraising.

A consultant is a nonprofit professional with the knowledge, skill, and experience to help you reach your fundraising goals. Consultants can work with your nonprofit to come up with strategies that cater to your needs.

Additionally, they offer you services to help fill in the gaps when it comes to running a specific campaign.

Now, let’s go through seven ways a fundraising consultant can help your nonprofit: 

  1. Find fundraising software.
  2. Give you a fresh perspective.
  3. Research your supporters.
  4. Train your board of directors.
  5. Map out your fundraising strategy.
  6. Plan fundraising events.
  7. Create a donor stewardship plan.

Keep reading to learn more!

Fundraising consultants can help your nonprofit with fundraising software.

1. Find fundraising software.

Imagine that you’ve decided to host your first crowdfunding or peer-to-peer campaign, and you know you’re going to need a platform to host your fundraiser. However, you’re not sure where to start. You probably have questions like:

  • What features will I need?
  • What is the best platform to use?
  • How do I create my campaign?

Your nonprofit could always spend time researching crucial features and the top crowdfunding platforms. But is that really the best use of your time? 

That’s where a fundraising consultant can step in. Consultants have experience working on different kinds of fundraisers, so they can suggest software that they’ve used (and found successful) in the past.

Not only can fundraising consultants help you with finding the right software, but they can also teach you how to use it.

Even if you’re familiar with fundraising software, a consultant can still help you with:

  • Setting up new software – There is more software out there for nonprofits than we have time to name here so I’d suggest checking out an article that explores the topic more deeply like this one.
  • Migrating your information – For simple migrations, we suggest working directly with your CRM provider if your migration is simple. For complex migrations, consultants are the best route to go with.
  • Suggesting a payment processor – We recommend either going with an aggregator or with a dedicated merchant account depending on your organization’s size and amount of donations processed. In terms of dedicated payment processors, try to find someone that specializes in nonprofits and understands the commons challenges that arise with fundraising like iATS Payments.
  • And so much more!

No matter what level of software knowledge you have, a consultant can offer solutions to your challenges.

The bottom line: Don’t spend your valuable time searching for the right software to enhance your fundraiser. Use a consultant with first-hand experience and knowledge to suggest the best options for you.

Fundraising consultants can bring a fresh perspective to your strategies.

2. Give you a fresh perspective.

Maybe your nonprofit is looking to take your fundraising in a new direction. Why not bring in a consultant that can offer you fresh ideas? Instead of hiring someone on full-time, you can hire a fundraising consultant for a single project.

Experienced consultants have worked with many different organizations and know which fundraising ideas work. In fact, some of those ideas may be unique, creative suggestions that you never would have thought of on your own.

As an outsider, consultants can look at your nonprofit through the eyes of potential donors. Not only does this help you improve the fundraising experience, but it can also help you improve your:

  • Donor engagement and stewardship.
  • Different giving channels.
  • Fundraising events.
  • And so much more!

When you have a better understanding of what a donor wants, you’ll be able to answer the questions that many donors will have when they consider supporting your cause.

You may not be comfortable with every suggestion a consultant makes, but be open to their advice. Who knows? You might discover a new and effective approach to fundraising!

The bottom line: A fresh perspective may be exactly what you need to revive your fundraising and create new and unique ways to encourage donors to support your mission.

When you need help researching your supports, a fundraising consultant can help.

3. Research your supporters.

Whether you need help with prospect research or understanding your donors’ giving behaviors, hiring a fundraising consultant is an effective way to gain valuable insights into your supporters. If you don’t have a prospect researcher on your nonprofit’s team, you can hire a fundraising consultant to help you gain knowledge on your donors. 

In fact, there are nonprofit consulting firms whose entire focus is on gathering your supporters’ data and creating donor profiles.

Additionally, one of the most common services that consultants offer is a feasibility study. The study can help your nonprofit figure out if you have the means to run a successful fundraiser. The study also includes prospect research, which helps nonprofits identify major gift donors.

In addition to learning more about your prospects, a consultant can also help you analyze data on your supporters’ giving habits. The data that you gain from your supporters will help you improve your fundraising, solicitations, and engagement. With this information, you can tailor your fundraiser to meet your donors’ preferences.

For example, if you find out that a good percentage of your donors give through their mobile devices, you can create an event that focuses on mobile giving or that encourages donors to use their phones.

The bottom line: Researching your donors is an important step in the fundraising process. With the help of a fundraising consultant, you can gather and analyze the data that can inform your approach.

Training your board of directors is a service that most nonprofits offer.

4. Train your board of directors.

Good fundraising starts with a strong leadership team to help guide your nonprofit in the right direction. With a well-trained and motivated board, your nonprofit can:

  • Solicit donations from major donors using your board members.
  • Have the right guidance and leadership to achieve your goals.
  • Be successful in your future fundraising.

The approach that a consultant will take to train and ignite your board members will be different depending on the consultant. However, you should look for training that includes three factors:

  1. A comprehensive evaluation – Even before your consultant starts training, he or she should review your board and your nonprofit to see what areas need the most work. That way, you get training that is specifically tailored to your nonprofit’s needs.
  2. A detailed board work plan – The plan will describe the changes that need to be made and how you and your board can put those improvements into effect.
  3. New practice implementation – Don’t pick a fundraising consultant who just gives you the strategies to improve your board of directors. The consultant should help you put the new practices in place so that you aren’t making these changes all on your own.

With a consultant by your side, you’ll be able to to train your board so that they can help guide your nonprofit.

The bottom line: If you want to help your board members become better leaders, then you should consider hiring a consultant to help train your leadership for success.

A fundraising consultant can help you create a fundraising strategy.

5. Map out your fundraising strategy.

One of the most important parts of fundraising is the strategy or approach you use to raise the funds. While fundraising is not new to you or your nonprofit, you may need help creating a plan that is more effective and helps you reach your goals.

Remember that your strategy isn’t just for you, but it’s also for your entire staff and volunteers, so your strategies should be easy to understand.

If you want guidance on how to create a strategy, a consultant can align your goals, budget, and available resources to create a plan that will put your nonprofit on the right track.

A fundraising consultant can help you create a strategy that: 

  • Establishes your priorities and vision.
  • Empowers your team.
  • Maps out the steps to reach your goal.

Consultants can not only help you create a plan, but they can also help you implement it. If you’re not sure where to start, they will provide you with the necessary steps.

Even if you’ve made multiple strategies in the past, consultants can still be a helpful resource. They can give you a different outlook on your fundraising and identify challenges that you never considered. Plus, they can offer you best practices to make your fundraising strategies even better!

The bottom line: To have a successful fundraiser, you need a solid strategy in place to ensure that your nonprofit goes in the right direction. A fundraising consultant can help you create a plan that will take your fundraising to the next level.

A fundraising consultant can assist you with managing your events.

6. Plan fundraising events.

If you’re handling a new type of fundraising event or one that requires a lot of work to run, you can hire a consultant to help you manage it. That way, you can focus on interacting with donors and raising funds.

A fundraising consultant can help with your event from start to finish, whether that entails creating a strategy for your campaign, helping you train your volunteers for the event, and/or creating marketing materials. Of course you can hire a consultant to complete one or two tasks or help with your entire event.

Fundraising consultants have the strategies to plan and execute an event that will help you raise funds and stay on budget.

For instance, if you want to host a charity auction, which requires a lot of planning and funds to host, your consultant can help you find businesses that offer in-kind donations and event space.

Additionally, a consultant can assist you with more than just planning for your campaign; they can also help you with the engagement that happens during and after your event.

The bottom line: Fundraising consultants can help you plan and manage your event so that you can focus on more important things like reaching your goal!

Bonus: If you need more help with planning a fundraising event, you can find it here.

Even after the fundraising is over, a fundraising consultant can help you create a donor stewardship plan.

7. Create a donor stewardship plan.

After you’ve reached your goal, you can now celebrate your success, right? Not quite. After your fundraiser is over, you have the opportunity to start cultivating relationships with your donors, and a fundraising consultant can help you even after all the funds have been raised.

That’s what makes working with a consultant so great; you can continue working with them to improve your stewardship and your next fundraising endeavors. The relationship never stops (if you don’t want it to)!

Here are few ways a consultant can help you with your donor stewardship:

  • Create a plan of action for how you’ll reach out to donors.
  • Design and write a welcome packet that you can send to first-time contributors.
  • Suggest other ways for your nonprofit to interact with supporters.
  • And so much more!

A consultant can help you create the best cultivation strategy for your nonprofit. For example, your consultant may help you draft emails that you send to donors after they’ve made a contribution.

Stewardship is an important part of the fundraising process, but it often doesn’t get the attention it deserves.

Effective stewardship doesn’t have to be overly complicated. As Brady Josephson explains, donor stewardship boils down to two things your nonprofit can do: know and care for your supporters. Consultants can help you figure out practical ways to both learn more about your donors and show you care.

While donors may support your nonprofit once, with the proper stewardship plan, your donors will want to support your cause in the future.

The bottom line: Fundraising doesn’t stop once you’ve reached your goal. A fundraising consultant can help you take the necessary steps to start establishing relationships with donors after the fundraiser.

BonusLearn more about donor stewardship.


Hiring a capital campaign consultant can be a helpful way to amplify your fundraising and find strategies that will help you be successful.

If these seven ways got you interested in working with a consultant, you can start your search today. Not sure where to start? Look at these top fundraising consultants to start your search.

Request a free trial of Fundly CRM today!

What is crowdfunding?

What is Crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is a fundraising method that can be used by nonprofits and individuals alike. Crowdfunding has been used to raise money for:

 

With crowdfunding, individuals and nonprofits reach out to people in their immediate network via social media and email to ask for donations. Contributions are made via an online donation portal that securely processes credit card transactions.

What is crowdfunding? Example of a crowdfunding campaign

How Does Crowdfunding Work?

  • 1. Start a campaign

    Whether you’re an individual that needs to raise money or part of a nonprofit’s fundraising team, the first step of crowdfunding is to start your campaign. Choose a platform, set up an account, and get started!

  • 2. Tell your story

    Your fundraiser is unlike any other; make sure that everyone knows that! Tell your unique fundraising story and make sure to include the reasons you’re raising money and how you plan to spend (or donate) it.

  • 3. Share your fundraiser

    The most important component of any crowdfunding campaign is the sharing aspect. No one can donate to your campaign unless you tell them about it! Get the word out via social media, email, and even word of mouth.

  • 4. Give updates and acknowledgements

    Your supporters, friends, and family members will want to know how your fundraiser is coming along! Make sure you post regular updates and promptly thank the people who have helped you raise money.

Quick Crowdfunding Tips

Upload amazing crowdfunding photosupload-amazing-crowdfunding-photos

Your photos are the first things your supporters will see when they visit your crowdfunding page. Make a good first impression! Take professional-looking photos, and make sure that they aren’t blurry or grainy.

 

 


Write a detailed descriptionwrite-a-detailed-description

People aren’t going to give to a crowdfunding campaign if it isn’t immediately clear what their money will go toward. A detailed crowdfunding description can give your supporters more context for their donations and allows you to spell out your fundraising need.

 


share-regularly-and-at-the-right-timeShare regularly and at the right time

Experts say that the most successful crowdfunding campaigns raise the majority of their funding during the first and last 3 days of the campaign’s duration.

These “crunch times” are the best opportunities for sharing your crowdfunding campaign on social media and via email.

Throughout the rest of your campaign, make sure you share your campaign on a regular basis (we recommend every 5 to 7 days).

 


Write a detailed descriptionForm an “update schedule”

Most crowdfunding campaigns last at least a few weeks (although we hope that you raise your goal sooner than that!). In order to keep people invested and interested in your fundraiser, you should post updates on your campaign page and social media.

Of course, you don’t want to overwhelm your supporters with updates. Instead, create an “update schedule” that you can stick to throughout the duration of your fundraiser.

We recommend that you post an update once every week. You should also write updates whenever you reach a milestone (i.e., half of your fundraising goal) or receive a particularly large donation.

 


Offer perks to your donorsoffers-perks-to-your-donors

Not every fundraiser will be able to offer perks to their supporters, but if you are able to do so, incentives can be a great way to encourage people to give to your campaign.

You can sell t-shirts, mugs, stickers, phone cases, and more! Customize your merchandise so that people have something to remember your fundraiser by.

You can also set up giving tiers that correspond to your incentives. A bigger donation results in a better perk!

 


Need to learn more about crowdfunding? Check out these resources!

Additional Resources for your Fundraising Success

7 Tips for Fundraising Success

7 Tips for Fundraising Success

Every crowdfunding campaign could use a little help every now and then!

Whether you need advice about shooting and uploading crowdfunding photos, writing descriptions and updates, or sharing your fundraiser with your friends and family members, we’ve got your back.

Click below to learn more about the top seven crowdfunding tips that can be used for all types of fundraising efforts and campaigns!

10 Fundraising Examples

You’ve heard the stories about fundraisers surpassing their goal, but how often does that really happen?

The answer? More frequently than you might think! In fact, individuals and organizations often meets and exceed their goal when they use Fundly to set up a fundraiser and share it with their friends and family members.

Check out these ten crowdfunding campaigns that all exceeded their fundraising goals by sizable margins in just a matter of weeks!

General Crowdfunding Concept

Get the Inside Scoop on Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding has been used to raise money from everything from creative projects to medical costs and more!

Why is it so popular? Well, it might have something to do with the fact that a crowdfunding campaign is insanely easy to set up and share with your friends, family members, coworkers, and other peers.

See for yourself! Take a look at our Ultimate Guide to Crowdfunding and learn how you can make the most of this fundraising craze!

Raise Money for Any Cause - Start Your Fundly Fundraiser

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration Guide

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration Guide

Does your nonprofit use FundlyPro? Do you want to potentially receive twice as many donations during your crowdfunding campaign?

If so, keep reading! FundlyPro has integrated with Double the Donation, the leading matching gift software provider.

This integration enables nonprofits to promote matching gifts to their supporters after a donation has been made.

Let’s run through what the process will look like for your donors.


First, a donor will arrive on your FundlyPro donation page.

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration

Once they click on “Donate Now,” the FundlyPro donation page will appear. Donors will input their personal and credit card information.

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration

Once the donor clicks “Make Your Donation,” they will see a confirmation page. This is where the donor will be able to use Double the Donation’s matching gift search tool.

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration

In this example, our donor works at Bank of America. When they start typing in their employer’s name, they will see matching gift information that is specific to that company.

FundlyPro and Double the Donation Integration

Donors can learn more about their company’s matching gift program including information about:

  • Forms
  • Guidelines
  • Contact information
  • Minimum and maximum match amounts
  • Match ratios
  • Employee eligibility
  • Nonprofit eligibility
  • Deadlines
  • Submission processes
  • And more!

FundlyPro’s integration with Double the Donation makes it easier for your donors to research their employer’s matching gift program and complete the necessary steps to submit match requests.

This means that your nonprofit could potentially raise twice as much during your crowdfunding campaign’s duration!


If you haven’t set up a FundlyPro account yet, you can do so here.

For more information about Double the Donation’s services, click here.

Accept Donations on Facebook with Fundly

Accept Donations on Facebook with Fundly

Raising money online can seem overwhelming at times. There are so many ways to reach out to people and ask them to donate to your nonprofit’s cause. That’s why Fundly has created deep social integrations that allow your organization to accept donations on Facebook!

Why Should Your Nonprofit Accept Donations on Facebook?

Many of your donors use Facebook on a daily (if not hourly!) basis. Facebook now has over a billion users, making it the single most popular social media site in the world.

You’re also probably promoting your crowdfunding campaign on Facebook (and if you’re not, check out this article to learn how you can get started). Your promotional Facebook posts can lead your donors to your crowdfunding campaign’s page where they can make a donation.

But what if they could give without having to leave Facebook?

That’s what Fundly’s Facebook integration allows your donors to do.

Not only does this integration allow you to easily accept donations on Facebook, it makes the giving process seamless for your donors. They can click on your nonprofit’s profile, make a donation, and go right back to scrolling through their newsfeeds.

It’s an incredibly convenient process for both you and your donors.

We’re going to go over the steps your nonprofit needs to take if you want to accept donations on Facebook.


Before we start, it’s important to note that whoever is an administrator of your nonprofit’s Facebook page will be the person to connect the Fundly account to the Facebook account.

Once you’ve logged in to your Fundly account, go to the “Settings” tab at the top of the page. On the left hand side of the screen, select “Facebook.”How to accept donations on Facebook with Fundly

If you haven’t already, you’ll need to connect your personal Facebook page to your Fundly account. Once you’re on the Facebook Settings page, you’ll see a field that says “Add Additional Facebook Page.”

If you’re the administrator of your nonprofit’s Facebook page and have connected both your personal Facebook account and your nonprofit’s Facebook account to your Fundly account, you should see your nonprofit’s page appear in the “Select Another Page to Connect” field.

Once selected, the field will open up to the screen below. This is where you will embed the donation form on your Facebook page. Accept Donations on Facebook - Step 1

Once the box is clicked, your nonprofit’s Facebook page will have a “Donate” tab.

Accept Donations on Facebook - Step 3

When donors click on the “Donate” tab, they will be taken to a form on your nonprofit’s Facebook page. The page is secure, and all information is encrypted. Donors only need to input a dollar amount, name, billing address, and credit card information.

Accept Donations on Facebook - Step 2

Your nonprofit’s Facebook page will also display your fundraising thermometer and your top donors on the right side of the page. Donors can scroll through FAQs to learn more about how they can donate to your cause on Facebook.


Take a look at this how-to video to learn more about integrating your Fundly account with your Facebook account and embedding your donation page.

Crowdfunding social media templates that will help you raise more money

Crowdfunding Social Media Templates That Will Help You Raise More Money

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If you’ve recently started a crowdfunding campaign, you might be wondering how you should go about sharing your campaign on social media.

Whether you’re constantly posting on Facebook, tweeting every day, or taking pictures with Instagram, you likely have some kind of social media presence that can be used to promote your crowdfunding campaign and help you raise more money.

This article will take you through three different crowdfunding social media templates for Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Each one will include a real life example as well as actionable tips that can help you create the perfect social media post to promote your crowdfunding campaign!

  1. Facebook
  2. Twitter
  3. Instagram

Let’s get started.

1. Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Facebook

Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Facebook

Facebook is the current social media giant. At over a billion users, there is no shortage of people who you could promote your crowdfunding campaign to.

Essentials for a great Facebook post

  • An image or graphic that represents your cause or fundraiser.
  • The link to your crowdfunding campaign page.
  • A hashtag (if you’re using one).
  • Brief copy that explains why you’re asking for donations.

Your Facebook Template

“I’m raising money for [insert cause, project, or event]. I’ve raised [amount] so far, but I still need [amount] to completely reach my goal! Would you consider making a donation (even small gifts help!) to assist me in my fundraising efforts?
Please feel free to share this post and encourage your own friends to give to my [cause, project, or event].
Thank you in advance for your generosity! [insert relevant #hashtag, URL, and photo]”

Here’s an example that an organization, Giraffe Laugh, posted to their Facebook wall.

While this post is short and sweet, it has a few great elements:

  1. The image is striking and connects back to the copy. The poster took a picture of an empty table and asked Facebook friends and followers to “Help us fill this table…” This helps to emotionally tie the reader to the campaign and encourages them to make a donation.
  2. They’ve used three different hashtags. The #Fundly hashtag will help the post show up in searches for “Fundly,” and the other hashtags can be used by donors and supporters to show their passion for the fundraiser. Of course, any more than 4 hashtags on Facebook can look like a lot, so remember to not overdo it.
  3. They’ve mentioned the duration of the campaign. Stating that the campaign is only on “day 2” encourages donors to jump on the bandwagon early. Giving supporters an idea of how long you’ve been fundraising or how much you’ve raised gives them context for your campaign and encourages them to make a donation.

➡ Main Takeaway: Facebook is one of the best social media outlets for promoting your crowdfunding campaign. Use the template and example that we’ve provided to make the most of your Facebook posts and raise more money!

2. Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Twitter

Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Twitter

Twitter is another popular option for people who want to spread the word about their crowdfunding campaign. Hashtags, mentions, replies, and retweets can all contribute to more individuals seeing and clicking on the link to your campaign page (and hopefully donating!).

Essentials for a great tweet

  • An image or graphic that represents your cause or project.
  • brief description of your fundraiser (under 140 characters).
  • A relevant hashtag.
  • A mention of the organization you’re raising money for (when applicable).
  • The shortened URL to your crowdfunding page.

Your Twitter Template

“Help me raise money for [cause, project, or event]! I only need [amount] to reach my goal. Make a difference! [insert relevant #hashtag, shortened URL, and photo]

Since you only have a limited number of characters to get your message across, your tweets must be action-based and impactful. Use verbs that will spur people to action.

Check out this example of a great tweet that promotes a crowdfunding campaign.

Let’s examine what makes this tweet effective:

  1. The organizer has used multiple action verbs. Having words like “donate” and “act” in single, commanding sentences makes this tweet stand out and grab followers’ attention.
  2. The organizer has posted the shortened URL. Regular URLs can be lengthy, but if you shorten your URL (using a tool like this one), you can fit more characters into your crowdfunding tweet.
  3. The organizer has mentioned the crowdfunding platform and included a hashtag. While you may want to create your own unique hashtag for your promotional tweets, you should still tag the platform you’re using and the organization you’re raising money for (when applicable). This allows your post to be picked up by more people who might never have found your tweet otherwise.

➡ Main Takeaway: Your tweets must be to the point and pack a punch. Use our crowdfunding social media template for Twitter and reference the example we highlighted when you write your own tweets.

3. Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Instagram

Crowdfunding Social Media Templates for Instagram

Instagram is gaining in popularity, but it is still primarily used by people under 35. If you’re asking people who are in that demographic for donations for your crowdfunding campaign, you’ll need to craft the perfect post.

Essentials for a great Instagram post

  • A professional looking photo(s).
  • A brief but detailed description.
  • A reference of the URL (links can only be placed in Instagram bios, not in individual posts).
  • A relevant hashtag (when applicable).

Your Instagram Template

“I’m raising money for [cause, project, or event], and I need your help! Even a small donation would assist me in reaching my goal of [amount]. With a donation of [amount], you’ll be able to [offer tangible way that a donation could help]. Read more about my campaign and make a donation by clicking the link in my profile! [insert relevant #hashtag]

Unfortunately, if you place a link in the description of your Instagram photos, your followers won’t be able to click on it. Make sure you include the link in your bio so that supporters have access to your campaign!

Check out this example of an awesome Instagram post that promotes a crowdfunding campaign.

Why is this Instagram post so great? Let’s break it down:

  1. The organizer has created and used hashtags. The #fundly hashtag allows others to find the campaign easily. His unique hashtag, #teamampari, allows him to group his own posts and inspire others to tag their own posts with the hashtag.
  2. There is a brief yet detailed description. The organizer didn’t need to go too far in depth with his image description. He simply listed out the reason he’s raising money and described how amazing his mother is.
  3. The organizer used inspirational photos. If you’re raising money for a cause that isn’t quite so cheerful (like this organizer is), it can help to post photos that take supporters back to a happier time. This organizer chose to use photos of his mom smiling, walking a dog, and hanging out with her family members.

➡ Main Takeaway: Instagram can be a great platform to use to promote your crowdfunding campaign; you just have to know how to make the most of it! Post inspirational photos and add the link to your crowdfunding to your Instagram bio to raise more money and awareness.


Hopefully these crowdfunding social media templates have helped you get a better idea of how to promote your fundraiser on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You don’t necessarily have to post on every single site; instead, find a platform that works for you and your supporters!

For more crowdfunding tips, check out these helpful resources:

Happy fundraising!