Effective booster club leaders focus on fundraising because they firmly believe their altruism will help not just their children, but the entire community. As a Booster Club leader, you might find it challenging to balance all your responsibilities. Taking advantage of resourceful online tools may be your best bet for success. Here’s why you should consider a consolidated platform for events and fundraising to better engage your donors:
1. Attract more donors
Every 15 seconds, a new user joins the world of social media. According to Brandwatch, there are 3.03 billion active social media users. That’s nearly 40 percent of the worldwide population.
Booster Club leaders should consider how using social media can boost fundraising by targeting specific audiences. For example, the 2016 Global NGO Online Technology Report claims that millennials prefer to donate online, and they are most often inspired to give by social media. Utilize and mobilize your social media presence to spread the word about fundraising events.
2. Increase engagement with photos
If you are looking to grab the attention of potential donors, spread the word about a cause, and/or inspire volunteerism, sharing photos online is a powerful move. Improve visibility by tagging others in your photos and opening yourself up to the photo-sharing community.
According to The Guardian, people are more likely to donate to a cause when it means something to them. Use effective imagery to connect with people, and let them get to know the cause you want them to support.
3. Collect more money
Offering online/mobile payment and donation options helps your donors help you. This eliminates the need for donors to have cash and checks on hand. Accepting online payments leverages today’s tech with potential donors -- where it’s only a few clicks from decision to completion of payment. That’s why online donation campaigns see more dollars collected overall. It’s not just easy, it’s a familiar process that donors feel innately comfortable with. According to a Cone Communications study, 48 percent of American adults are likely to use an app to make a donation. What are you waiting for? You can broaden your reach (and increase your donations) by using mobile and online payment methods.
By making the most of online tools such as social media, electronic payment options, photo sharing, and email, you can be more successful in your fundraising efforts. Keep your contacts organized to seamlessly communicate with your whole audience and track their responses. You can test and target your messages to specific recipients and optimize your fundraising efforts to meet your goals every time. These online tools offer Booster Clubs an edge that will make managing fundraising events more effective, and better yet, more engaging.
Learn more about fundraising and how memberplanet can help your Booster Club raise more donations. Get started with your free account today.
Reaching your fundraising goals is always a challenge. Whether you’re planning a big event or something small, running a successful campaign requires organization, dedication, and clear definitions of your goal. These four simple steps will help optimize your donations to reach your goal and then some.
1. Encourage peer-to-peer fundraising
Your campaign will spread like wildfire with the help of your supporters. Help donors help you by motivating them to share your campaign with their friends and family. Peer-to-peer fundraising opens your donation campaign to everyone in your educational foundation’s circle and beyond: Your supporters’ supporters will in turn become your supporters! Post content online for your donors to share on social media. Your audience is more likely to donate to your page when they see that others, especially people they know, have already donated.
2. Adopt a social media strategy
One third of online donations comes from peer-to-peer fundraising, making it a vital market to access. Social media is part of a larger multi-channel communication strategy, which is to communicate with donors using the channels (email, phone, social media, etc.) they prefer. If you’re still not using social media to fundraise, you’re missing out on a great tool for spreading the word about your campaign. Find out which social media platforms your target demographics are using and start by engaging them on those platforms.
3. Stay in touch
After receiving funds from your donors, send thank-you emails to go out immediately to encourage them to spread the word about your campaign. Go the extra mile and share the impact of your campaign with donors, staff, and volunteers. Leave them feeling a genuine sense of gratitude from you. This encourages them to participate in upcoming events and fundraisers from your organization. You can easily send an email to all your members and participants, but it’s better to tailor messages to target specific recipients, such as generous donors and key players of your team.
4. Track your progress
Set weekly and monthly goals to monitor your success. By setting timely goals, you can create a call to action for your supporters to stay on target and overcome smaller hurdles.
Now that you have some excellent tips, get out there and crush your fundraising goals. memberplanet was created to help you build a great campaign and maximize donations. Get started on our platform today.
As a group leader, one of the highest mountains you’ll need to climb is reaching your fundraising goal. Whether you’re planning for a big Greek Week event or something small for a local nonprofit, running a successful campaign requires organization, dedication and clear definitions of your goal. Combining our fundraising features with these simple tips will help optimize your donations and reach that mountain’s peak.
1. Take advantage of online convenience
The whole point of fundraising online is to make it as easy as possible to meet your goal, so we’ve cut out a few steps to not only give you a head start, but also rid you of paper work.
Search for a charity using our platform.
When you create a donation campaign through our platform, you have the option to search more than 1.7 million 501(c)(3) charities and raise funds on their behalf. Any individual or group can raise funds to benefit the charity selected through this feature, and the funds will go directly to them – no accounting or transfers required. Donors will automatically receive email receipts, and donations made directly to qualifying 501(c)(3) charities may be tax deductible (check with your accountant).
1. Hover over Donation Sites on the left navigation sidebar
2. Click Create Donation Site from the submenu
3. Select the Find a Cause module
4. Follow the rest of the prompts to create a donation campaign
Offer electronic payment methods.
Making the most of digital fundraising techniques can help you reach a larger pool of donors, not just the ones who are willing to pay by check or cash. Offering electronic payment methods gives members the option to donate by their preferred payment method, use their phone, and sign up for automatic, recurring donations.
Optimize your page for viewing on any device.
Online fundraising also allows you to share information quickly to a large audience, so make sure your fundraising page is design responsive for optimal viewing on any device. (If you’re using memberplanet, we’ve got you covered).
2. Use visuals to appeal to your audience
Incorporating visual elements, such as video and photos, is an effective way to create a voice. It’s important to not just think about your plan for obtaining your goal, but to also focus on why it’s important. Conveying the “why” to potential donors deepens their connection with the cause and appeals to their emotions, which translates into more money for your organization.
To add photos and video to your Donation Site, select a template to edit, or select the existing campaign you want to edit.
Click the photo icon to upload photos, or copy and paste a video URL in the Add Videos field.
3. Reach out to your inner circle
4. Adopt a social media strategy
We see social media as part of a larger multi-channel communication strategy, which is to communicate with members using the channels (email, phone, social media, etc.) they prefer. One third of online donations come from peer-to-peer fundraising, making it a vital market to access. By 2018, 2.4 billion people will be social media users. If you’re still not using social media to fundraise, you’re missing out on a great tool for spreading the word about your campaign in a fast, cost-effective way. Figure out which social media platforms your target demographics are using, and start by engaging them on those platforms.
memberplanet users: As soon as you publish your donation campaign, you can share your site to social media directly from the platform, mobile app, or the page itself.
Use our built-in URL shortener if you’re on a character limit, or customize the full URL.
To customize the URL or get the short URL, click on the campaign you want to manage.
6. Follow up
Set up an automated thank-you email to your donors to go out immediately after receiving funds. In it, you can encourage them to spread the word about your campaign. Go the extra mile and share the impact of your campaign with donors, staff, and volunteers. Leave them feeling a genuine sense of gratitude from you. This encourages them to participate in upcoming events and fundraisers from your organization. You can easily send an email to all your members and participants, but it’s better to tailor messages to target specific recipients, such as generous donors and key players of your team.
Our platform features were created to help you build a great campaign and maximize donations. Now that you know some excellent ways to reach your fundraising goal, you can focus on getting to the top of that mountain.
Originally published March 28, 2017
For most K-12 booster clubs, fundraising isn’t a piece of cake. Coordinating time and resources to stay atop the minds of your supporters shouldn’t take over your life (or the lives of your volunteers). Here are some tips to save time so you can skip the frustration and double up on the fun.
1. Repurpose content
With each new year and transition in booster club leaders, the records (Excel sheets) from previous fundraisers can get lost in the process. Wouldn’t it be so much easier to reuse a pre-populated template? By building upon past successes and the work that was already done, you will take the headache out of organizing the campaign and have more time to focus on member engagement. memberplanet allows you to repurpose templates for incoming officers to use. Learning a new position takes time; we’re here to make it easy.
2. Take advantage of social media
Promoting your event doesn’t have to be stressful, especially with the help of social media. Post your campaign URL in as many places as you can, including your website, email, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. Through social media, you can get people talking about your event with just a few shares. The more people who share, the broader your reach gets. More awareness for your campaign and way less time spent making promotion calls or passing out flyers!
3. Save time with automation
To be successful, all booster club leaders should engage with their donors and volunteers. But there are only so many hours in a day, and as a leader, there is only so much time you can dedicate to booster club admin tasks. That’s what inspired us to build in automated features in our platform. For example, handwriting thank-you cards take forever! To save time, admins can add a thank-you message to the automated confirmation email that is sent once someone donates online. Set it and forget it!
Whether you’re a seasoned booster club fundraising pro or just getting started, you can’t go wrong with these three time-saving steps. memberplanet is here to help you focus on what’s important: engaging with your supporters and making a difference in your community.
Create a free account and see for yourself!
Northern California Contest Club (NCCC) is a group of radio operator enthusiasts and is an affiliate of the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the national association for amateur radio operators in the United States. In the world of ham radio, amateur refers to operators who must pass an exam to communicate non-commercially over the radio frequency spectrum. The contest-oriented club relied on manual processes to record and track membership, which was time consuming and resulted in inaccurate record-keeping. With members demanding transparency and online payment options and access to information, NCCC needed a system that members could use to view their own membership status and payments.
Since teaming with memberplanet, NCCC has maintained accurate records (in less time) and provided a dedicated, online membership portal for its members to view payment history and stay updated with club activities. As a result, NCCC has enjoyed a 57% increase in paid membership and 37% boost in dues collected in just one year.
Small Club, Big Challenges
For a club whose members are mostly over 50 and involved in a hobby that includes a fondness of Morse code, attracting younger demographics and recruiting new members in order to thrive may seem like a unique struggle. There are many small social clubs, however, that have fallen behind on meeting the demands of a new generation of members, including providing access to information online, offering convenient payment methods, and effectively communicating updates. Clubs that still heavily rely on paper filing systems and manual processes face the time-consuming challenge of keeping accurate financial records and managing members.
It became clear to NCCC that it needed to upgrade its manual processes and combat its dwindling membership – or face radio silence.
Manual Processes – Over
In 2016, NCCC began using memberplanet to keep its database organized and up to date. “We really didn't know how many members we had prior to memberplanet. It's sad, but true,” Ian Parker, NCCC’s Secretary, explained. The club’s manual reporting processes included interactions between the secretary and treasurer, a lot of paperwork, and time. Sometimes members who missed payments went undetected. “We now have a good grasp on the number of real members. With memberplanet our data is kept accurate – and timely.”
Club admins have enjoyed the platform’s turnkey features, such as automated membership reminders and convenient payment options. “We also have more up-to-date member information and auto renewals. These were the primary reasons for moving to memberplanet, which has been one hundred percent successful,” Parker said. The membership insights available in the support site and the time freed up from admin tasks are now directed to engaging members.
A Closer Look at NCCC’s Online Results
Admins have used the platform’s event sites and RSVPs to manage and track attendance. Parker believes that memberplanet’s payment reporting, event invite templates, and email campaign features have dramatically improved their efficiency. Members can log in to a dedicated portal, view club announcements, connect with other members using the interactive directory, and update their own profile. “We have received many positive comments,” Parker continued. “Overall, it has been a huge plus and now folks can also see when they last paid!”
When NCCC started using memberplanet in 2016, it had 100 paid memberships. That number rose to 157 by the end of 2017 – a 57% boost. The club also saw a 37% increase in membership dues. Parker noted how more members are engaging with the club, converting to paid membership status, and how the hassle-free process of joining the club is contributing to an increase in membership overall. As of January 2018, NCCC had 350 members total.
Broadcasting a Bright Future
Parker reveals NCCC has recently obtained 501(c)(3) status for nonprofits, and plans to fundraise and open an online NCCC store are in the works. Growing paid membership and engaging members remains a focus for the club, which was founded in 1970. Now that NCCC personnel find it much easier to manage and interpret data, communicate with members, and increase engagement, they expect that their club for radio aficionados will remain on the air for much, much longer.
Contact memberplanet today to learn how the platform can help your organization simplify membership.
Fundraising is the act of raising funds for a cause or a mission. And although that sounds straightforward and simple, the act itself can be, well, anything but. If you’ve run a fundraiser, you know what we’re talkin’ about.
But the key to success remains pretty simple: You must create a strategic plan and stick to it.
No matter what goal you’re working toward as a group leader, follow these fail-safe tips and with research, a dab of creativity, and (possibly) a bit more elbow grease, you’ll be surprised at how much you can accomplish!
1. Set your goals
Before getting into the nitty-gritty details, you need to take a hard look at the big picture – and that begins with figuring out your purpose. Defining a clear, measurable goal is the foundation of a successful plan. Here are a few things to think about when setting that bar:
It’s okay to be ambitious with your goals, but it’s also important to determine what’s realistic. Shoot too high and you could end up spreading resources too thin. Now it’s time to write the fine print of your plan.
2. Give your donors the option to donate online
Offline (check and cash) donations are still essential for any fundraising effort, but online is quickly gaining ground when it comes to raising money. It’s all about convenience. Every additional step it takes to give – like writing a check, finding an envelope, and rummaging through a desk for stamps – creates the potential for donors to get distracted: Where did I put my checkbook? Oh look – here’s my coffee mug! I’ll find my checkbook later. It’s time for another cup.
See my point? Check out how much funds Wittmann Elementary School raised in its third year of offering an online payment option:
Total PTA Membership Fundraising for 2016-2017: $35,655
Offline Fundraising via Checks and Cash: $8,120
Online Fundraising via memberplanet: $27,535!
(Read the full Wittmann case study.) 77 percent of funds were raised online with memberplanet’s platform. And that’s just one example. The Chronicle of Philanthropy conducted a survey of 100 leading nonprofits and found that internet fundraising grew by about 13 percent year over year in 2014.
Bottom line: If you’re not using online giving features, you’re missing out on a big chunk of cash today, and even more tomorrow.
3. Delegate responsibilities
Shared responsibility is crucial to holding a successful fundraiser, because one person (you) cannot manage everything. Delegate most of the effort so that the event itself can go off without a hitch while you oversee the big picture.
If you are planning an event, designate an event committee to book vendors and locations, and make sure you’ve paid any fees or permits if it is being held in a public place. If possible, research backup vendors and another location in case your first location doesn’t work out. Plan a dry run (especially helpful if you expect a large amount of attendees).
4. Get the word out
In order to conduct a truly successful fundraiser, you will want to make sure that people actually know about it. Create a campaign schedule:
Note to memberplanet users: You can also encourage your members to create their own supporter pages for the cause, which makes their campaign efforts more personal and effective.
5. Execute the plan
With so much preparation, planning a fundraiser can seem overwhelming. But the pay-off is worth it. You’ve worked hard to design a great event, so try to sit back and enjoy the magic. Once the fundraising is underway, make sure that each of your delegated tasks is being tended to. Part of your plan should include periodic check-ins with those overseeing key tasks. The engagement, tracking, and logistical back-work does not end when the effort begins. If you see that your fundraiser is falling short of your goals, re-allocate resources or make adjustments to your goals.
6. Analyze the aftermath
Whether your fundraiser exceeded your wildest expectations – or it wasn’t quite what you expected – it’s important to meet with your team to determine what went well, what didn’t, and what you can do next time to improve. Detailed tracking is essential for the post-game debrief.
7. Say thank you
Thank your team, donors, partners, sponsors, and other benefactors. It’s super easy to use Smart Lists on memberplanet’s Pro and Premium plans to send a targeted email (templates included!) to all your donors to express gratitude. If you held an event, be sure to include a sharable photo album (show the impact!) to strengthen that connection with supporters.
Holding the ultimate fundraiser isn’t magic – it’s a combination of hard work, team effort, strategic planning, testing, and creativity. Whether you’re an organization with 20 volunteers or a 10,000-member medical society, following these rules will put you on the path to success.
Log in to get started on your next fundraising campaign.
Don’t abandon your traditional fundraising methods just yet, but keep in mind that your old techniques might need some updating. As the world shifts towards an increasingly digital landscape, taking your fundraising efforts online will prove to be a beneficial strategy to help you surpass your monetary goals. Here's why:
Not many parents and donors carry cash or a checkbook anymore. Accepting electronic payments makes raising money faster and easier than ever. By offering your supporters the choice of donating online or offline, you can reach a larger network. This way, you’ll raise more money!
Tasking someone with collecting cash and check payments puts your booster club at risk of accounting errors, bad checks, and fraud. On the plus side, credit card payments are SSL compliant, ensuring secure online payments and donations. By accepting electronic payments through a reputable payment processor, you also boost your own credibility.
One of the main benefits of launching an online fundraising campaign is its potential to go viral. This opens your campaign up to supporters you wouldn’t typically reach with traditional methods. This can help you reach your monetary goals faster and even surpass them. Share your donation page directly to your social sites to maximize exposure.
Crowdfunding has gained momentum over the past few years and is only becoming more popular. It offers convenient payment methods for donors, makes tracking donations easier for admins, and is easily shareable across social media. It’s an effective and efficient way of framing a fundraising campaign.
If your booster club is hesitant about taking your fundraising online because of processing fees, it is important to research various sites to see how they structure their costs.
For example, PayPal charges 2.9% for payment processing and $0.30 per donation.
memberplanet offers significantly lower site fees based on monthly subscription, and 3% plus $0.30 per transaction. What you pay in fees is easily offset by the increased donations received by offering online payment options. How much of an increase? Some studies say by 30 -100% or more (Visa International).
In addition to payments processing, memberplanet provides a robust toolset for communicating (a custom-branded mobile app, email and tracking, group texts), managing members (option to set member levels, auto membership renewals, recurring donations), and more, all on a single platform. It’s more bang for your buck.
Paying a small fee shouldn’t be a deterrent when deciding to bring your fundraising efforts online. Streamlined payment methods, larger reach, and customizable templates are just some of the features that will help you orchestrate a better campaign and grow donations.
Getting donations shouldn’t just be about asking for cash. That’s intimidating and off-putting.
The more effective, less painful way to collect donations is by asking for contributions indirectly. The goal of fundraising is to help others connect a passion or memory with a cause. It’s about making your goals theirs. Here’s how you can relate to your donors:
1. Use social media
Engage with your supporters on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to share your story rather than your fundraising goal. Social media is a crucial resource when it comes to raising awareness; use relevant stories as well as personal testimonials from your foundation to show people where the donations go such as to new laptops, computer labs, programs, or school improvements. Thank those who have donated in the past to entice them to donate again. Utilize your internal network to share these posts with your team to extend your reach even further. If you can raise awareness, you can raise donations without having to even ask.
2. Share your story
What’s your “why”? Most people can relate to personal stories and experiences. Use an emotional hook to pull people into sharing your passion for the cause and showcase your educational foundation’s purpose to connect with potential donors on a deeper level.
3. Make it personal
Make sure your donors connect with your educational foundation’s message. Giving is a personal act and you want your supporters to feel the need to make an impact. Rather than adding a blunt “donate” button on an email, ask recipients to visit your donation page to learn more. That way, they’ll be lead through the donation path all on their own.
4. Ask for feedback from donors and parents
When you make someone feel valued and heard, you open the door for them to speak more comfortably. Ask potential donors for their thoughts on where donated funds should be allocated. Seek out a passion or pain point that connects them with your educational foundation. You may even bring them to the conclusion to donate all on their own.
Asking for donations can seem a lot less overwhelming when you view contributing as inviting people to participate and support the school district. You’re selling significance and purpose. Lead them through constant communications to tell your story. Lead them with memberplanet!
We have all the tools your educational foundation needs to expand reach and manage your donations in one spot. See what our other educational foundations are saying about how memberplanet helps increase donations and improves donor engagement.
Whether you’re a pro at fundraising or a just getting started with the #GivingTuesday movement, you can get your organization all geared up to participate by following our four-step process. Click on the infographic below for a high-res view.
It’s hard to believe that the holiday season is quickly approaching, isn’t it? The first sighting of snow-covered décor or lit up trees means that giving season is upon us! There is one major event that kicks off the holiday giving – Giving Tuesday. Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving, Giving Tuesday 2017 takes place on November 28. Last year, more than 85 community coalitions across the U.S. and people in 98 countries/territories participated in the charitable event.
According to the Giving Tuesday organization, Giving Tuesday raised more than $177 million online in 2016. Last year’s results prove that donors are extremely generous with charitable donations during both Giving Tuesday and end-of-year giving in general. As awareness of the day continues to grow each year, so do its benefits for charitable organizations. Giving Tuesday has become a global event, but you don’t need to be a national or multi-tiered organization to participate. Here are three steps even a local nonprofit can take to prepare for the main event.
Step 1: Set your Giving Tuesday fundraising goals
An important part of preparing for Giving Tuesday is setting your fundraising goals. When setting your goals, you can consider the following:
Remember, the more prepared you are in determining your goals, the easier it will be for you to nail down your message when you’re ready to share your goals and grow community involvement!
Step 2: Fire up your fundraising campaign
You have a million ways these days to approach promoting your donation campaign. You can go the chestnuts-roasting-on-an-open-fire approach, which is kind of a slow burn at first, and then switch to fireworks finale mode, an all-at-once effort, toward the end.
Whatever approach you decide on, take advantage of email and social media – two powerful marketing platforms.
Mobilizing volunteer efforts is another strategy that spreads awareness throughout your local community and celebrate giving. The holiday giving season can mean giving one’s time or donating goods – not just funds. By inviting donors, employees, and members of the local community to your event, you can attract attention to your cause.
Step 3: Make donating easy
In business, a best practice is to make it easy for customers to give you their money. The same applies to your donors. Always give them the options to donate when they want and how they want. By offering the option to donate electronically, your supporters can make secured donations conveniently from a website or mobile device, whenever they want, even if they’re thousands of miles away. You can still accept cash or check, but you’re not limiting your fundraising by only accepting those forms of donations.
Nonprofits that offer online giving also widen the donor net and grow overall fundraising revenue. By setting up a way to process funds electronically, you can also offer donors the option to pay by recurring or installment payments. Recurring payment options are a great fit for those who want to contribute weekly, monthly, or quarterly throughout the year. Installment payments give donors the convenience of breaking up a large sum of money (which they may not have considered giving all at once) into multiple payments of their choosing.
By using these key steps to prep for Giving Tuesday, your organization will not only be a part of a growing movement, it will also give you the chance to celebrate the success that your charitable efforts deliver to your local community.
Ready to get started? Log in, create a donation campaign, and choose from multiple templates, including Giving Tuesday and other seasonal occasions.