5 steps to better fundraising

Are you ready to take your fundraising team to the next level? Let’s tap into your intrinsic motivation and get you fired up! Knowing your “why” is the first step. Figure out why you’re here and why you want to achieve your goals. Once you have that, choose to be motivated and make a conscious effort to get excited about life again. Identify and eliminate the bad habits that hold you back from being your best. 

Keep your motivation levels up by setting goals of all sizes; big and exciting, and small and attainable. Negative self-talk can kill motivation, so be mindful of it and replace it with positive affirmations. Stop overthinking and celebrate your wins, no matter how small. Learn from others who have succeeded against the odds – their stories will inspire you to push through any obstacles. Lastly, don’t be afraid to reevaluate your goals as you grow and change. Let’s unlock your full potential and make your fundraising dreams a reality!

Fundraising is something all nonprofits have to do. They don’t always do it well, but they must always be searching for funding if they want to survive. It doesn’t have to be that way, though. Over the years we’ve found that it boils down to doing a few, simple things consistently. Here are five of the most important things that nonprofits can do to conduct better fundraisers:

  1. Develop a clear fundraising strategy: A well-defined fundraising strategy is critical to the success of any nonprofit’s fundraising efforts. This strategy should outline the organization’s goals, target audience, messaging, and fundraising tactics. It should also include a budget and a timeline to guide the fundraising campaign.
  2. Build relationships with donors: Building relationships with donors is essential for long-term fundraising success. Nonprofits should make an effort to connect with donors on a personal level and keep them engaged throughout the year. This can involve sending regular updates about the organization’s work, inviting donors to events, and acknowledging their contributions with thank-you notes or other forms of recognition.
  3. Use data to inform fundraising decisions: Nonprofits should use data to make informed decisions about their fundraising campaigns. This includes tracking donor behavior, analyzing fundraising metrics, and testing different fundraising tactics to see what works best. With the help of data, nonprofits can make informed decisions about where to allocate resources and how to optimize their fundraising campaigns.
  4. Leverage social media and digital marketing: Social media and digital marketing are powerful tools for nonprofits to raise awareness and attract new donors. Nonprofits should leverage these platforms to create engaging content that resonates with their target audience. This can include sharing stories about the impact of their work, running social media campaigns, and using digital advertising to reach new donors.
  5. Focus on stewardship and retention: Finally, nonprofits should prioritize stewardship and donor retention. This means continuing to build relationships with existing donors, thanking them for their support, and showing them the impact of their contributions. Nonprofits should also be transparent about how donations are being used and provide regular updates about the organization’s work. By prioritizing stewardship and retention, nonprofits can turn one-time donors into lifelong supporters.


Here’s a simple outline to organize your next nonprofit fundraiser:

Detailed Plan for Raising $10,000 for a Public Event in 30 Days

Assess Your Organization’s Needs and Goals
a. Identify the fundraising campaign’s objectives:
Clearly define the purpose and goals of the public event.
Determine the specific amount of funds required to cover event expenses and achieve the campaign’s objectives.
b. Review the organization’s strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats (SWOT analysis):
Identify the organization’s unique selling points and competitive advantages.
Evaluate potential challenges or limitations that could impact fundraising efforts.
Identify opportunities to leverage existing resources, partnerships, or community support.
c. Estimate the financial resources needed to accomplish the campaign’s objectives:
Create a detailed budget that outlines all event-related expenses, including venue rental, permits, marketing materials, supplies, and any other necessary costs.
Consider contingencies and allocate a portion of funds for unexpected expenses.
Develop a Fundraising Plan
a. Set a realistic budget for the campaign:
Determine how much of the $10,000 target will be allocated to cover event expenses and how much will be directed towards fundraising efforts.
b. Establish the campaign’s timeline:
Break down the 30-day period into specific milestones and tasks, ensuring that there is ample time for planning, outreach, and implementation of fundraising activities.
Create a schedule that includes deadlines for key actions, such as reaching out to potential donors and launching specific fundraising initiatives.
c. Identify potential donors and create a database:
Research and compile a list of potential donors, including individuals, local businesses, community organizations, and relevant stakeholders.
Collect contact information and relevant details for each potential donor, such as their interests, previous involvement with the organization, and potential contribution capacity.
Engage Your Donors
a. Utilize multiple channels for communication:
Develop a comprehensive communication strategy that includes online platforms (website, social media, email newsletters), offline channels (flyers, posters, community bulletin boards), and in-person networking opportunities.
Regularly update your donors and supporters about the campaign’s progress, highlighting the impact their contributions can make.
b. Personalize donor engagement:
Tailor your messages and interactions to each donor’s interests and preferences.
Send personalized emails, make phone calls, or arrange face-to-face meetings to establish meaningful connections and build rapport.
c. Create compelling stories that evoke emotions:
Develop narratives that effectively communicate the importance of the public event and its potential impact on the community.
Share success stories or testimonials from previous events to demonstrate the organization’s track record of making a difference.
Offer Incentives
a. Create levels of giving:
Establish different tiers or levels of donation amounts, each with its own set of recognition and benefits.
Clearly communicate the value and significance associated with each giving level.
b. Provide reward incentives for donations:
Offer tangible or intangible incentives to motivate donors, such as event tickets, exclusive access, merchandise, or recognition through social media shout-outs or acknowledgments during the event.
c. Publicize donation impact:
Regularly update donors on the progress of the campaign, highlighting how their contributions are bringing the public event closer to its goals.
Share success stories and testimonials from beneficiaries or participants to demonstrate the positive impact of the event and the organization’s work.
Stay Organized and Accountable
a. Monitor donation data:
Keep track of all donations received, including donor information, amounts contributed, and any associated incentives or benefits.
Utilize a spreadsheet or fundraising management software to maintain accurate records and easily track progress towards the $10,000 goal.
b. Provide transparent campaign updates:
Regularly share updates on the campaign’s financial progress, acknowledging and thanking donors for their contributions.
Display a donation tracker or progress bar on the organization’s website or social media platforms to visually represent the campaign’s advancement.
Evaluate and Improve
a. Analyze campaign results:
Assess the overall success of the fundraising campaign by comparing the achieved funds with the initial goal.
Review the effectiveness of different fundraising strategies and initiatives employed throughout the campaign.
b. Identify key takeaways:
Identify strengths and weaknesses of the campaign, noting what worked well and areas that require improvement.
Gather feedback from donors and stakeholders to gain insights and identify opportunities for growth.
c. Implement changes and improvements for future campaigns:
Use the findings from the evaluation to refine future fundraising efforts and optimize strategies.
Apply lessons learned to enhance donor engagement, increase fundraising efficiency, and maximize the impact of future public events.
By following this detailed plan, your nonprofit organization can strategically raise $10,000 for the public event within a 30-day timeline. Remember to adapt the plan based on your organization’s specific circumstances and goals.




* Research by OpenAI with editing/formatting by staff. Image provided courtesy of Johnson Publishing using Canva template.