Is there a cause that inspires you to give back? Whether you’re passionate about helping refugees, funding cancer research, or fighting poverty and hunger abroad, chances are there’s a charity committed to that cause.
While not everyone can afford to give money to their favorite nonprofit, there are still ways to raise money for charity through different fundraising strategies. This charity fundraising guide offers tips on charitable giving so you can support charities that mean the most to you, regardless of your financial situation.
Crowdfunding for a good cause
Traditional fundraising fosters relationship-building, while online fundraising makes it effortless to spread the word about your cause and reach people around the globe. Some of the most successful charity fundraisers use a combination of online and offline fundraising.
Crowdfunding allows you to support a charity close to your heart when finances are tight and have become an essential fundraising tool for individuals and small groups. It provides a simple, efficient way to accept donations from anyone. Many also turn to crowdfunding to pay for the cost of throwing a fundraising event.
Six strategies for charity crowdfunding success
If you’re searching for ways to take your online fundraiser to the next level, this guide can help. From grassroots volunteering to social media competitions, below we share charity fundraising ideas for any cause that can help you increase donations and raise money for charity.
1. Talk to the nonprofit you’re raising funds for
While people can raise money for nonprofit organizations without contacting them, it’s best to reach out before getting started. This will help you follow any specific fundraising rules outlined by the charity since some nonprofits are strict about sources for charity funding. It will also ensure that you’re fundraising for the correct nonprofit—a single nonprofit can have dozens of individual chapters, each with a unique tax number.
When you contact the nonprofit you’re helping, be sure to:
- Ask if they have any upcoming events or promotions you could be a part of with other supporters
- Ask for any fundraising tips they might be able to share
- Ask if they have any free swag you’d be able to use to promote your cause, such as keychains, bumper stickers, and pens.
2. Host your own fundraising event
From happy hours to amateur art exhibits, there’s no shortage of fundraising event ideas. You can turn almost any event into an opportunity to raise money for a good cause—it just requires a bit of planning and ingenuity.
Fundraising events are a fantastic opportunity to build relationships with your community. The more your volunteers and supporters enjoy what they’re doing, the more likely they are to do more of it—supporting your cause in the process.
Keep these tips in mind when planning your fundraising event:
- To avoid stress and burnout, round up others who share a passion for your cause and ask them to pitch in.
- It costs a bit of money upfront to host any kind of event, but budget event planning is still possible. Try asking local businesses to donate food and other needed items, or ask a restaurant or other business to host the event in exchange for the business you’ll bring in.
- Send out event invites through social media sites, and encourage friends to bring along others. Using social media to promote your fundraiser can drum up support for your cause and encourage others to get involved.
- Read our blog posts how to raise money with a charity walk and charity event ideas to help drive donations for more inspiration.
3. Launch a social media competition
On average, every time you share your fundraiser with friends on Facebook, you’ll net $43 for your cause. If you’re looking to go beyond sharing to raise funds for charity, a social media contest can give you a leg up.
Social media contests can include any of the following:
- Photo and video submissions
- Submissions of the best unique fundraiser hashtag
- Slogan writing contests
- “Positive impact” story contest in which people share stories about the positive impact the charity had on their life
Of course, it isn’t a contest until there’s a deadline—or multiple rounds of competition, with each successive round increasing the stakes. Choose an end date to create urgency and a sense of excitement around the contest.
4. Get a little help from your friends
When you’re fundraising, you’ll often have supporters ask how they can help beyond making donations. The perfect reply? Ask them to volunteer their time.
If a volunteer is a fantastic baker, ask him or her to bake items you can sell, perhaps at a lunch or dinner event. Can an artist donate art you can sell at a gallery event? If you’re raising money for a sports team, can the coach and players host an afternoon sports camp as a fundraiser? There are endless ways for volunteers to use their skills to bring in money for your charity.
Another way people can contribute is by sharing fundraising responsibilities. Our team fundraising feature makes it simple for multiple people to chip in and manage the fundraiser, whether that means thanking donors or writing updates.
For more information on team fundraising, see our blog post Fundraising for Teams: Tips for a Successful Fundraiser.
5. Empower others to do their own outreach
You can increase your fundraiser’s reach exponentially by asking friends and family to share your cause with their contacts. Try using one of these email templates to reach your goal faster and make it as effortless as possible for others to ask for support.
Another approach is to craft the perfect public Facebook post about your fundraiser, then tag a few contacts and ask them to share the post. Pairing this approach with a compelling video is a great way to get people to stop scrolling and pay attention to your message.
6. Sharpen your strategizing skills
We want to help you reach your fundraising goals, and we offer fundraising tips on our blog to make it easy. If you’re eager to learn more about how to raise money for charity, here are a few of our favorite posts:
- Charity Fundraising Tips for Any Cause
- Online Fundraising Without Social Media: 42 Ways to Share Offline
- 25 Best Charities to Donate to in the US (2019)
- Charity Crowdfunding Guide: How To Support Your Favorite Cause
- Top Charity Fundraising Sites to Make Giving Easier
Support your favorite charity today
Nonprofits do an incredible amount of good, but they also need help to continue their mission. GoFundMe makes charity fundraising easy, and our free fundraising platform allows you to keep more of your donations. Check out honest testimonials from users on the GoFundMe reviews page.
We hope this charity fundraising guide has helped you understand how to raise funds for charity and rally your community around your cause. To make an even bigger impact, start a fundraiser for your favorite nonprofit today.