Fundraising is the lifeline of all nonprofit organizations: without it, not many nonprofit organizations would have the financial capacity to handle all the projects and causes they support. Funds raised through donations from patrons and well-wishers form the bulk of the average nonprofit’s income streams. There are plenty of reasons why anyone would want to donate to a charity, but the three most common are:

• To support a specific cause
• Giving back to the community
• Income tax deduction incentives

Despite the will to donate by some members of the public, fundraising is often anything but easy for most nonprofits. New organizations, especially, may struggle to find enough consistent donors to fund their projects. But fundraising does not have to be complicated. Here are some tips to get you started.

A Beginner’s Guide To Nonprofit Fundraising
Illustration by Mikeshouts. Image: Katt Yukawa. *note: not an actual book.

1. Determine Your Ideal Donor

Fundraising is more about knowing where to look than working hard. Take time to understand your ideal donor before kick-starting any fundraising campaign. Following a blanket approach will only waste valuable time and money. Consider your nonprofit’s purpose and the type of people likely to identify with your cause at a personal level.

2. Have A CRM System

CRM (Customer Relationship Management) systems are sets of tools that help companies streamline their service management, sales and marketing. Salesforce is by far the most reliable CRM for nonprofits looking to store and manage crucial data about their fundraising campaigns. Combining this with a Salesforce integration tools like MoveData will help you consolidate all your fundraising data into one easy-to-manage dashboard and give you all the insights necessary to tweak your fundraising strategies.

3. Stand Out From The Competition

The NCCS (National Centre for Charitable Statistics) estimates that there are at least 1.5 million registered nonprofit organizations in the US. With so many nonprofits competing for the same donor attention and support, it might be easy to fall through the cracks.

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Fortunately, nonprofits can draw attention to their causes much easier these days thanks to online marketing. Building a brand might take time and require some investing upfront, but the potential outcome is worth all the effort. After all, why would anyone donate their hard-earned money to an unknown nonprofit organization that does not express the importance of its cause?

4. Simplify The Giving Process

Fundraising should be easy and exciting. Complicating the giving process unnecessarily will only put off all those potential donors you worked so hard to attract. For instance, using a poorly designed website that is difficult to navigate might do more harm to your fundraising goals than failing to optimize your marketing campaigns.

5. Encourage Long-Term Support

While one-time donations are always welcome, the key to long-term success as a nonprofit is to create lifelong supporters. These supporters (typically businesses and high net worth individuals) should be as passionate, if not more, about your cause and be willing to make recurring donations to a nonprofit organization they believe supports what they stand for.

Creating a periodic giving program and promoting it passively to previous donors is a viable way to encourage long-term support. When trying to convert one-time donors into long-term patrons, remember, volunteers are more likely to donate to a cause they support than non-volunteers.

Featured image: Unsplash (Katt Yukawa).

Published by Mike

Avid tech enthusiast, gadget lover, marketing critic and most importantly, love to reason and talk.