6 Ways Nonprofit Software Can Help You Fundraise
Panhandling usually has a negative connotation. It’s why charities advocate for donation via formal institutions rather than street-side hand-outs. The latter are often exploitative, and might not have any real, long-term impact. That said, even within the NGO space, there’s a measure of “begging” involved. You still have to “advertise” your deficiency and inspire contributors. Is there any way LMS can make this process less tiresome and more efficient? Here are 6 ways that nonprofit software can help donors dig a bit deeper into their pockets for your worthy cause.
1. Keep donors educated
Many indigenous communities are driven by a spirit of giving. So, it’s common to see people pooling funds to educate gifted children or to pay emergency hospital bills. Some communities even crowdfund weddings and funerals. The challenge in these setups is accountability. At some point, someone will get suspicious about how those funds were used and why the treasurer suddenly has a new shirt. In the larger scale of NGOs, LMS can eliminate this problem. Your LMS should have content creation tools so you can update donors on where their money went. This may include detailed expense reports, project photos, and blog updates. Greater transparency leads to greater donations because contributors know where their hard-earned money is going.
2. Give Volunteers Resources
For many students (or retirees) who go on a “mission,” their purpose is to make a difference. It gives them a sense of fulfillment. And it looks good on their resumes and college applications, meaning they’ll probably want to tell everyone how they spent their summer. Yes, they’ll probably have livestreamed on Facebook, or posted daily stories on Instagram and Snapchat. But you can make it easier for them to formally advocate for you. The LMS should have user-friendly portals with photos, videos, and reference materials. They can use the platform to share information and get other volunteers (and donors) involved.
3. Use gamification
Some people see charity as a modern form of the tithe. They’re not just one-off contributors. They may pop up once a month or once a year. A donor loyalty program is, therefore, a handy tactic. Recognize repeat donors when they come back. Find an LMS that can respond to them by name and rank their contribution. You can put contributors into tiers and offer badges and rewards when they donate a certain amount or reach a given milestone. Another way to recognize VIP contributors is to run basic “donor contests” like raffles. Some LMS apps have this tool built in for social media marketing, and you can easily repurpose it for your nonprofit.
4. Provide Bragging Rights
Many entertainment sites allow us to “show off” with a single click. We can share high scores on mobile games, check into an event, or receive a donation icon. These can be automated and enabled for amounts as low as a dollar. It takes no effort on the donor’s part and builds their social clout. As an added advantage, these kinds of “I donated” icons can easily go viral, bringing even more donations your way. Ensure your donation platform is compatible with popular payment processors like PayPal or Stripe. The easier donors can give, the more likely they will. Just be sure to pick the right hashtag and verify that it displays equally well on the web and mobile.
5. Make hiring easier
Multilevel marketing works because we trust our peers. But getting them on board is the tricky part. So, while you may feel the cause you donated to is valid, it can be awkward trying to persuade your friends. Make the task easier for your donors. Create messaging templates they can send to friends. Build these into your LMS so a donor can easily find a “message for mom.” Or “text to childhood neighbor” with just the right wording. They’re far more likely to hit “send” than call up a friend and explain the cause to them. And on the recipient’s side, all they have to do is click “Yes” and they’ll be instantly redirected. No effort at all. Get an LMS that can design these templates in a quick, convenient, mass-produced manner.
6. Distribute Mass Notifications
The previous tool was a donor-initiated invitation to contribute. But you also need a tool to simultaneously reach your existing database of donors. This can be used periodically. For example, you may be running a promotion, or your regulars may be nearing their preferred donation date. You want the LMS capacity to remind them their contribution is due and send them a “thank you” message after. You want to do this affordably, efficiently, and in a way that doesn’t automatically get spammed. You might even build them an app.
Some organizations use guilt to solicit donations from their donor pool. But what are the options for nonprofits who want to take the high road? Well, their in-house nonprofit LMS can be an ethical way to kick up their fund drive. Update the blog or newsletter to show donors exactly what their dollars can do. Offer resources through the nonprofit software so volunteers can easily show their friends what they’ve been up to. Badges and icons that can be shared on social media are always a hit, as are “please donate” templates that they can send to friends and family. Link your system to social media to ease the entire process. And ensure your LMS for nonprofits can send text reminders to our mailing list—the kind that won’t get spammed.
Our eBook can help you stretch your resources and boost your fundraising efforts by keeping your team in the loop. That includes donors who want full transparency. Another great resource is our online directory. It features the leading platforms and you can filter by pricing model, deployment options, and spec support, as well as read reviews to see how they fare against other nonprofit LMS solutions.