Chances are you already understand what peer to peer fundraising means on a very basic level. A peer to peer fundraising tool is a form of crowdfunding with the specific intention designed to raise funds via an organization vs. via a crowdfunding site.
It seems like every time you turn on the TV, there is someone collecting money for an individual going through a difficult time and there always seems to be a sense of dis-trust regarding that fundraiser. Well, unlike the platforms that allow any individual to raise on behalf of any event (i.e. GoFundMe), peer to peer platforms are designed to be managed by one organization, such as a non-profit. The platform is integrated into their existing assets (i.e. website) and is further branded as coming from that organization.
The purpose of managing this channel is to grow the impact of the cause organization by being able to reach the peers of the donors or individuals raising funds. These Brand Ambassadors are vital to the non-profit organization and a peer to peer fundraising platform, provides the right tools to engage these champions of the organziation.
What are the benefits of peer to peer fundraising:
If you are a non-profit organization, these are some of the benefits for developing a peer to peer fundraising program
- leveraging the network of your most loyal supporters, Brand Ambassadors which will increase the likelihood of conversion to being a donor
- build momentum for a cause via social channels leveraging this network
- a major hump for any non-profit organization to overcome is the trust factor of where their funds end up going so having a personal story attached to a fundraising effort reduces this grey cloud for the donor
A checklist of key considerations for implementing a peer to peer fundraising platform.
Identify a Program
Your marketing plan this year may include 1 -2 big events. Consider leveraging a platform like Crowdster, which can integrate into your website and give your supporters a personalized tool to raise funds on your behalf. Other ideas that could make sense for your organization:
- develop a program to raise funds for individuals and share their story with their fundraisers on your website and through the platform.
- test a short term event (1-2 weeks) and crate momentum with a #hashtag movement on social media. Ask supporters to set up a page and fundraise.
- is your event offline, such as a race or charity walk? Create an online fundraising platform vs. traditional collections process.
What are your goals and budget?
One of the key components of any fundraiser is the establishment of goals. Defining the amount that you want to raise and how that translates to the individual level must be balanced with your costs.
The cost of implementation depends on the complexity of the program that is being deployed. In addition, there is a % fee of every dollar fundraised that should be determined as part of your cost model. Along with these fees, you must also consider these costs:
- credit card processing fees (PayPal, ApplePay, Visa/MC/Amex)
- project management expenses
- marketing expenses
Who is managing this program?
While it may seem that a program like this can run on its own, it actually requires resources to manage the activities below. When planning out your project, make sure your team is adequately staffed up and you have a point person for this initiative.
Activities involved in managing a peer to peer fundraising program:
- marketing, social media and PR talent
- administration of accounts and customer service inquiries
- tech guru for website development and integration aspects
Understand your technology assets and how it will be integrated
One of the complexities of any technology implementation is understanding what the peer to peer platform requirements are and how that would translate for your website. Make sure your team includes a technology team member or the team who designed your website.
Develop a marketing strategy for this program
Once you have aligned on the what and the who, defining a marketing strategy will be important to the success of your campaign. Some thoughts to consider:
- Brand the program with a unique logo and define a movement #hashtag that could resonate socially
- Create entertaining copy and content that grab attention. Be clever but not cute.
- Work with the peer to peer platform provider to design the website pages and other related online media to be consistent with your organization’s branding. Leverage your movement’s new logo and branding as well
- Make sure you consider mobile strategy
- Create PR opportunities or hire a firm to help promote the fundraiser in your community. Leverage celebrities, bloggers, journalists and social media to spread the word.
- Develop an email strategy for your existing supporters explaining what the movement is all about and asking them to fundraise on your behalf.
- Develop video and visual content for sharing about the mission
Create tools for your brand ambassadors
Leverage your marketing strategy for the entire movement/cause/fundraiser and create specific tools for your Brand Ambassadors (supporters)
- Create fun shareable content, i.e. memes where they can personalize a message (align to your overall branding)
- Provide social media tutorials and tips via blogs and online meetings
- Encourage the use of email by providing email templates with content included
- Create opportunities for Brand Ambassadors to guest blog, video interview or highlight specific events via the organization’s online channels.
If you have gone through this checklist and determined that a peer to peer fundraising platform makes sense for your organization, click here to begin your next step.