Raising funds, expanding your donor base, and building meaningful relationships with people is on the top of every non-profit’s To Do list. But what’s the best way to reach those goals? There are many different methods, but in recent years nonprofit crowdfunding has become a popular way to accomplish all 3 at once – and much more.
What Is Nonprofit Crowdfunding?
Crowdfunding, as the name suggests, is the act of raising funds for an initiative through a multitude of people. (also refered to as “peer-to-peer fundraising”) This is usually done via the internet, specifically through crowdfunding websites. Some of these sites, such as Kickstarter, cater to anyone – individuals or groups raising funds for a personal project or goal. For nonprofits, this means utilizing your network of contacts to assist in raising funds on behalf of your organization. This can include: event participants, employees, board members, previous donors, volunteers, etc. There are some crowdfunding websites that cater specifically to non-profits and other charitable causes, like Crowdrise and DoJiggy’s Crowdfunding Software.
While it is a relatively new concept, crowdfunding has been wildly successful for a variety of ventures. It also represents a lucrative opportunity for nonprofit organizations and charities to not only raise funds by reaching more people, but to have more eyes on your message and expand your donor base.
The Benefits of Crowdfunding for Nonprofit Organizations
When nonprofit crowdfunding is used strategically, it can provide a number of benefits for your organization. Raising funds is one of the more obvious benefits, but just a few of the many others can be any of the following:
- Raise awareness about your organization and your mission
- Expand your current donor base
- Increase your engagement and get people talking about your cause
- Get people excited about the impact they can make with their donation
- More effective communication via vast more outlets
- Reach people that your organization may not normally reach
These are just a few of the positive impacts of using crowdfunding in conjunction with your nonprofit fundraising campaign.
Nonprofit Crowdfunding: How to Get Started
Now that we can see all the benefits that crowdfunding can bring, what’s the easiest and most effective way of getting started? The first step is selecting the right platform. Crowdfunding websites are just platforms, so it’s important to research and select the one that works the very best for you and your goals. Each platform has different pros and cons, and offer different features. However, here are 5 questions to ask yourself when you are selecting a platform:
- How does this platform look and feel, and will it be appealing to my donors?
- How easy is it to set up and manage the page and campaign?
- Will this platform accept donations securely, and will it be easy and simple for people to donate?
- Is this platform well-known, and are other non-profits and charities using it successfully?
- How much does it cost, are there setup or other fees?will it be easy and simple for people to donate?
These questions will help give you an idea if the platform is right for you. Find a nonprofit crowdfunding solution that works well for your goals and within your budget, and enjoy the many positive rewards that come from crowdfunding for nonprofits!
You may also want to check out our recent infographic on the Value of Peer-to-Peer Fundraising for Nonprofits!