Both sole champions for a cause and nonprofit organizations know very well that fundraising campaigns are no walk in the park. But any setback in fundraising campaigns can be resolved so long as nonprofits know the challenges that they need to address. Here are some of these challenges:
1. Connection with prospective and active donors
Before there was social media, charities used to distribute marketing material such as brochures and flyers, and make phone calls that prospective donors would sometimes dismiss as unnecessary interruptions unsolicited material, unwanted calls, spam emails. Now that more prospective donors are up for grabs on the Internet, charities should create a community around their cause, as business book author Grant Leboff points out.
Know your prospective and active supporters’ various interests and demands, and provide prompt feedback to their queries, to design and promote your fundraising campaign more effectively. Investing in new technology, such as setting up emailing lists and official social media pages to keep donors updated, can also help fundraisers ensure that their campaigns are keeping up with the changing times.
2. Strategic planning
The lack of strategic planning before starting a fundraising campaign results in a campaign that’s present one day, and gone the next. Nonprofits should consider the costs of starting a campaign and set realistic goals. It’s better to start small and gradually grow in time, than to start grand, but on a whim, and then end up bankrupt. Conducting a feasibility study before a campaign will ensure that your fundraiser starts right, and brings your desired results.
3. Dry days
These are inevitable for nonprofits. Monetary donations usually reach their peak whenever there are natural calamities or man-made disasters. Proceeds gathered during peak seasons must be properly managed so charities will have reserve emergency funds.
PR and marketing communications consultant Angela Stringfellow says that nonprofits must think outside the box to establish fundraising and awareness campaigns to differentiate themselves from those with similar missions. This will help keep donations coming in, even during those dry days.
Sadly, there are people who take advantage of others by posing as a nonexistent nonprofit organization. Donors need to ensure the legitimacy of a charity. They need to do diligent research to avoid scams.
Nonprofits also need to build on prospective and active donors’ trust by securing voluntary accreditation. Publishing formal financial reports or creative audiovisual presentations on fundraising events and updates for transparency purposes will also help establish a charity’s credibility.
It takes more than passion for a cause to start a fundraising campaign. It also requires excellence in planning and executing campaigns, and maintaining current donors, and winning new ones. With this, your fundraising campaign is sure to withstand challenges thrown its way and touch more lives in the process.