Is Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Right for Your Organization?

first_imgPeer-to-peer fundraising—also known as personal fundraising, social fundraising, or simply P2P—happens when nonprofits empower supporters to raise money on their organization’s behalf. These types of campaigns allow causes to extend their reach far beyond their core network, raising awareness and attracting new donors.The power of peer giving is hard to ignore. At Network for Good, the volume of dollars and number of donations going to nonprofits through these social fundraising campaigns has grown significantly over the last few years. As we become more connected with each other through mobile technology and social media, it’s easier to leverage our networks (and the ease of giving online) to raise money on behalf of the causes we love.How do you know if your organization is ready for a peer-to-peer campaign? Here are five things to consider:You have a solid online fundraising program in place.Before branching out, nail the basics first. You’ll have a sense for what works and what doesn’t, plus you’ll have many of the tools in place that you’ll need for a successful social fundraising effort. You must have a donor-friendly way to accept online donations for all donors, every day. You also want to make sure you’re getting the most from your email marketing, social media, and your other communications channels to support your outreach.When you’ve mastered the fundamentals, you can expand your online fundraising scope to include different types of social fundraising campaigns.You have 5-10 passionate advocates you could recruit to raise funds on your behalf.Before adding peer-to-peer fundraising to your mix, think about the core group of supporters you will activate to become fundraisers for your cause. You may have more than 10 (which would be amazing), but having a handful of folks you know you can turn to will help get your campaign off the ground. Consider inviting these key advocates to join in the early planning of the campaign to ensure they’re even more invested. If you don’t have a list of ambassadors that comes to mind, spend time cultivating those relationships now.You have a concrete case for giving.Ok, this is always important, but it’s doubly so when it comes to peer fundraising efforts. Your case for giving will serve two goals: recruiting fundraisers and inspiring donors. You should be extremely clear on why someone should give to your cause, how the money will be used, and what impact a donation will have. Make it easy for fundraisers to understand how their network effect will amplify that impact. If you can’t clearly articulate your case for giving, it’s unlikely your fundraisers will be able to do so. (Need some help crystallizing your case for giving? We have a guide just for that.)You have board buy-in.This is important for many reasons, but one of the most overlooked aspects of peer-to-peer campaigns is that they can be the perfect opportunity to involve your board (and your board’s influence) in fundraising for your mission. They get to work their network, and you get closer to your goals. In many cases, these campaigns are simply a more structured way to enable what is likely happening already with events, house parties, and personal phone calls.Of course, it’s likely you’re also going to need their stamp of approval for trying a new strategy and getting the tools you need to succeed with a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign.You’re ok with letting go of your message.This is scary for most organizations, but remember: great social fundraising campaigns rely on the ability for your message to be carried far and wide by those outside your organization. We know that donors are more likely to give when asked by a friend or someone they perceive to be a peer. There’s a level of trust and authenticity that is hard to replicate at an organizational level.Prepare to equip supporters with communications tools and encourage fundraisers to add their personal stamp to their outreach for best results. If you’re comfortable with loosening your grip on your message (just a little bit!), you’ll be rewarded with loyal fundraisers and new supporters to welcome to your organization.These steps are really the pre-work for a successful peer fundraising strategy. Nail them now, and you’ll be set to transform donors into fundraisers with a peer-to-peer campaign.Ready to get started with peer fundraising or want to improve your current program? Let’s talk. We have a suite of tools—and the support and expertise you’ll need—to help you create a successful campaign.last_img