A key element in running a successful nonprofit organization is running a successful fundraising campaign. Unfortunately, many people struggle with putting together the perfect plan. You may be making crucial mistakes and not even realize it. The good news is, you’re not alone, and we’re here to help. Check out our list of fundraising mistakes to avoid before planning your next event.
Not Building Relationships
Long before your event takes place, you should be starting and cultivating relationships with potential donors. Keep them in the loop about events and milestones occurring in your organization, invite them to be involved in non-fundraising events, and make sure they understand what your organization does and represents. Most importantly, always thank your donors personally, both privately and with some form of recognition.
Leaving Out the “Who, What, When, Where, & Why”
Whenever you put together a pitch for donations, it should always include specific details explaining what the money will be used for. This includes who will benefit from the donation, what products or services they will receive as a result of the donation, and when they can expect to see results. They’ll also be interested to know if their donations are benefiting local communities and why it is a good idea for them to invest in you and not someone else. For example, instead of telling them that children will receive needed medication, try saying that 100 children in Chicago will receive cancer treatments their families cannot otherwise afford, and that you are working with X medical organization to provide the best possible care.
Only Asking For Money
It is a good idea to list recommended donation amounts when fundraising for nonprofits, but you should also consider different kinds of donations. Some people may be better able to offer products and services, or volunteer their time. These are valuable additions to any fundraising efforts. For example, if you plan to hold a silent auction, you will need to consider who will donate items for bidding, who will help run the event, and who will be bidding on items.
Not Sharing Results
The number one thing every donor wants to know when they contribute to a cause is that they made a difference. Let everyone know how much was raised, if goals were met, how the funds are being put to use, and how recipients are benefitting. When you thank your donors, always include this information and tell them why you appreciate their participation. Don’t let this be one of your fundraising mistakes.