Crowdfunding for Nonprofits: How It Works
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What is Crowdfunding for Nonprofits?
If your organization is looking for an innovative way to fundraise while engaging your supporters, crowdfunding may be the solution. Nonprofit crowdfunding is the practice of funding a project or initiative by raising money from a large number of people.
Peer-to-peer fundraising is a type of crowdfunding where individuals reach out to their network to raise funds while acting on behalf of an organization they feel passionate about. Nonprofit P2P crowdfunding is a unique and easy way to unite the needs of an organization, a person’s passion for a mission, and their network of friends and family members. This way of raising vital funds truly brings to life the idea that people give to people.
Taking Crowdfunding Online
Successful crowdfunding campaigns are run online utilizing crowdfunding websites. Supporters promote the website to their network of family, friends, and associates – asking them for support by making online donations to their school, nonprofit organization, church, charity, or cause. With the reach and scope of Social Media, the importance of mobile fundraising and the level of campaign success that can be achieved is more impressive than ever.
DoJiggy can help – we offer a free, robust crowdfunding platform for nonprofits and charities, schools, and churches.
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What are the Benefits of Nonprofit Crowdfunding?
- Global Reach: Crowdfunding for nonprofits allows organizations to expand their reach and share their stories with a greater number of people, all while engaging participants directly in their fundraising campaign.
- Supporter Engagement: Crowdfunding offers a unique way for supporters to engage directly with your cause. They’re not just donating; they’re participating in your mission and witnessing the impact of their contribution. As individuals fundraise on your behalf, the connection that the individual has with the mission and the nonprofit is strengthened.
- High ROI: Crowdfunding is a unique way of empowering individuals to raise funds independently, with more of a supporting role in the fundraising approach for organizational staff.
In sum, Crowdfunding for nonprofits allows charities and organizations to expand their reach and open up new windows of opportunity by engaging their participants directly in a fundraising campaign.
How Crowdfunding for Nonprofits Works
Often, nonprofit organizations have a large number of supporters. These may be donors, volunteers, people affected directly by the cause, employees, board members, or community members. Before crowdfunding came around, these people would help by donating their time or money to help in the planning and execution of fundraising campaigns. However, they weren’t necessarily brought into the nonprofit’s mission as active fundraisers. By utilizing crowdfunding for your nonprofit or charity, you can take your fundraiser one large step further. Now, supporters can not only become advocates for your cause by volunteering their time or making personal donations, but they can also help raise money by reaching out to their network and requesting donations. This increases your potential for raising donations and generates awareness for your cause, exposing your group to new markets and supporters. Crowdfunding initiatives must be able to connect people to donation forms to easily give their support.
Crowdfunding Websites and Tools for Successful Nonprofit Campaigns
Finding the right crowdfunding software is key to a successful crowdfunding campaign. You’ll want a great fundraising website that is easy to use for nonprofit administrators and participants (or parents of youth or school fundraisers). You’ll also want a platform that offers flexibility to customize for your needs and brand. And, of course, the cost is always a significant factor in nonprofit crowdfunding. After all, you want to keep as much money as possible for your mission.
Fundraising in Real-Time
Our free crowdfunding websites allow your organization to motivate participants and donors with gamification elements such as fundraising thermometers and leaderboards. DoJiggy also has an integrated prize management system that administrators configure for custom prize levels. Team fundraising and competitions can be a great motivator to new supporters. And for schools, classroom competitions are extremely important for helping your school meet fundraising goals.
To run a successful campaign, donating on your crowdfunding platform must be streamlined. You’ll need secure card processing and mobile giving options to easily collect payments from your supporters. Donors like to give money to a cause with a professional look and feel, as well as a nonprofit mission they support.
Many crowdfunding campaign supporters have never been introduced to the organization before. As this may be a person’s first contact with your mission, the seamless experience of a crowdfunding website is extremely important. As always, first impressions are critical.
Crowdfunding Reporting and Functionality
Your nonprofit crowdfunding platform should also provide capabilities to manage the entire life cycle of the crowdfunding campaign. Your participants need to register and create their fundraising pages. Administrators will want to share important details of the fundraising campaign, including the mission of the nonprofit and campaign, creative photos and videos, or other supporting materials.
Here are some reporting functions to keep in mind:
- Your crowdfund platform must generate reports on how much your fundraisers and teams have raised.
- Keeping track of donor information is important to grow and maintain a relationship with new donors.
- Organizers need to know who the top donors are.
- How successful sponsorship and any product sales are.
A top-performing crowdfunding platform like DoJiggy will raise the profile of the nonprofit organization to engage potential sponsors for current projects and campaigns. The look and feel of the website should match the organization’s branding standards. Clearly defined statistics and measurable success outcomes enable a nonprofit to create a strong case for support from future sponsors.
Tools for Nonprofit Crowdfunding Event and Campaign Participants
For P2P crowdfunding participants, your fundraising website must be easy and fun. Our crowdfunding websites allow participants to easily register and customize personal fundraising pages where they collect online donations. The website allows for personalization, so participants can share their stories and upload photos, videos, and a fundraising goal. Participants can update their webpage, track incoming donations, and easily share the link through social media channels.
Providing additional crowdfunding resources for your P2P participants is another important thing to consider for participants to feel supported by the organization. These resources can include sample donation-request letters and email templates, thank-you note templates, in-person event checklists, tips for soliciting donations, social media post copy templates based on social channels, and more. A quick and easy way to provide all of these resources to participants would be to create a Dropbox or zip file with logos, templates, and frequently asked questions that you can provide to each participant to ensure they are as successful as possible.
We have created a set of free peer-to-peer participant resources for all of your nonprofit crowdfunding campaigns.
Tips for Non-Profit Crowdfunding Success
- Ensure that your crowdfunding website is responsive and readily visible on mobile devices. The majority of social media interaction is done on mobile devices and your crowdfunding website will be accessed through social media. Therefore, it’s vitally important for it to be responsive and professional in appearance and allow for easy donation collection.
- Stories are of utmost importance. The individuals raising funds should share their personal reasons for loving the organization’s mission. Taking the time to frame stories compellingly helps to ensure that people feel connected to your work and compelled to give.
- Share campaign progress. Our crowdfunding sites use fundraising thermometers at the campaign, team, and individual fundraiser levels. Leaderboards and badges add to the fun.
- Your nonprofit’s crowdfunding campaign will be shared on social media. Ensuring that individuals can easily share links to the campaign creates easy access for people wishing to give financial support.
- Support and motivate your participants. Create weekly campaign progress reports for campaign participants so that everyone understands where the campaign stands in terms of goals and which individuals are the highest performers. Include resources and templates to make it easy for volunteer participants.
- Weave a culture of gratitude through every step of the campaign’s progress. Ensuring participants feel appreciated and supported will increase the likelihood of their enthusiastic support and future participation.
- Don’t give away a large percentage of your fundraising money in software and payment processing fees. Many crowdfunding platforms advertise themselves as a free service – but be sure to read the fine print. All e-commerce transactions carry a transaction fee (since Visa and MasterCard charge merchants for the privilege of accepting their cards – even for charitable donations). DoJiggy offers free crowdfunding with donor tips.
If you are ready to start the process of creating your first charitable crowdfunding campaign and want a professional and streamlined website to ensure success for your nonprofit, we are here to help. Sign up for our software platform designed for crowdfunding events to see if it fits your needs and is the type of experience that you would like your participants and donors to be a part of.
We’ve worked with over 2,000 nonprofit and community organizations because they chose us as their fundraising software partner. We would be honored to have your school or nonprofit as the next proud partner.
Peer-to-Peer Fundraising vs. Nonprofit Crowdfunding: What’s the Difference?
Peer-to-peer fundraising ( P2P fundraising) is a type of crowdfunding, and the two terms are often used interchangeably. The difference is that with P2P fundraising, your supporters create personal fundraising pages on behalf of your cause. Your supporter shares his or her page with friends, family, and other community members, and donations are made directly to your organization via their page. With traditional nonprofit or school crowdfunding campaigns, donations are made by many people directly to the organization or cause. Donor perks may be offered, and this type of crowdfunding is often done without the personal or team fundraising component.