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5 Innovative Fundraising Ideas For Charities And Nonprofits

Author: Adie M.

If there ever was a great time to be coming up with fundraising ideas for charities and nonprofits, now would be it.

The new decade may have presented us with its fair share of challenges. But, when it comes to tech solutions that ease the way for friction-free donation, we are rather spoiled for choice. 

The most recent statistics tell us that while overall giving grew 4.1% over the past year, online giving grew almost three times as much by 12.1%! As such, it's clear to see that moving your fundraising efforts online and boosting donor retention should be a top priority.

fundraising ideas for charities

Fundraising Ideas For Charities That Invite Engagement

Here are 5 future-proof fundraising ideas for charities and nonprofits that want to leverage the reach of the digital space. 

Leverage Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is a cost-effective way to draw potential donors to your online platforms in an organic way, rather than paying hefty promotional fees to get exposure on traditional media channels like radio or TV. 

There are various ways to do so. Normally, the main aim would be to increase traffic to your charity website or social media pages.

Once you have your readers here, you then have the opportunity to direct them to your fundraisers. The best way to start would be to put out some engaging content. 

For instance, you could create short videos showing the good work your organization is doing. Or you could partner with like-minded influencers who are happy to share your message with their followers. 

Engaging blogs and info-graphics are also options. It all depends on the type of messaging you have and the kind of donors you want to attract. 

Inbound marketing is a great way to build a rapport with your audience even before you try to engage them with a request to donate to your cause. It creates a space for your organization to show who you are and what you stand for. 

Move Your Charity Auctions Online

Online auctions are a great way to rope in donors who may be unable to attend brick-and-mortar events, but still want to contribute to your cause. Not only this, but it allows you to widen your reach and drive many more people to take part in your auction. 

With free online charity auction platforms, like BiddingOwl, charities can use their existing donor database to set up an online auction. This type of software makes it incredibly easy for nonprofits to set up and manage online auctions for fundraising purposes.

It is the ideal way to raise more money for your nonprofit with less effort while benefiting from a larger online bidding community. 

move your charity auctions online

Crowdfund Like A Pro 

Crowdfunding is yet another way to make use of digital platforms that have an existing audience. Sites like Kickstarter, GoFundMe, etc. are well-known and come with a built-in user database.

A crowdfunding campaign is relatively simple to set up. You simply load pictures and descriptions of your initiative to a user-friendly platform.

Once it's been approved and live, you can then use the link to promote it on your own social media platforms and via your donor database. 

A little side bonus of using crowdfunding sites is that it allows you to distribute promotional material at the same time. Most of these campaigns offer potential donors a token of appreciation for their contributions. Think branded T-shirts, coffee mugs, visors, etc. 

If you take the time to create something special, this item goes on to promote your cause passively when the donor uses it for years to come.

Interesting ideas include adding a QR code to a mug or shirt. This will take people to a mobile site with donation information that they can use if the cause speaks to them. 

Get Involved With Cause Marketing

Cause marketing is the practice of reaching out to your target audiences in the spaces where they are most able and likely to give to your cause.

A very basic, old-school example would be donation tins at checkout counters. Consumers can easily drop in a coin or two when they get their change. 

In the digital age, this has been extended to point of sale add-ons before checkout in online and brick-and-mortar stores.

Certain charities also choose to partner with big retailers or banks who offer consumers the option of donating their points or rewards to the nonprofit in question rather than using it themselves.

There are many great options available to forward-thinking charities in this regard. 

donations at checkout

Retain Existing Donors

Retaining your existing donors is one of the simplest ways to ensure that future fundraising initiatives are successful.

There are a variety of ways to do so. Some are as simple as crafting and sending a heartfelt thank you note upon receipt of a donation. Others are a little more involved. 

Most strategies hinge on strategic communication that walks the fine line between being informative and intrusive.

You want to keep your donors informed and engaged. But, you don’t want to get to the point where they immediately delete your emails or send them to the spam box!

Signing up with a donor retention expert can make all the difference. These individuals specialize in using donor retention tools and techniques that deepen relationships with your pool of supporters. 

However, if your nonprofit can’t justify the expense, start small. Speak to some of your regular donors to find out why they support you so regularly. Also, reach out to one-time donors to see what you may have done differently. 

With this type of data at your disposal, it becomes somewhat easier to see where your retention strategy falls short. From there, you can work out what you can do to improve ongoing engagement. 

Final Thoughts

Charities and nonprofits can benefit greatly from adopting tech-forward strategies to boost donations. Take inspiration from these fundraising ideas for charities and see what a difference it makes in the overall engagement with your next campaign.