Tips for Using Social Media to Build Awareness and Enable Participant Fundraising
He recommended the following six steps to creating breakthrough social-network fundraising:
1. Get people online.
Johnston said event participants using online social networks raise about 150 percent to 160 percent more than those just raising money offline.
The average online gift also is larger than the average offline gift, partly because when you ask someone for money in person he has to reach in his pocket and pull out what he has. But if you ask him online, he can use his credit card.
Some ways Johnston suggested to get participants online are:
- make it easy, user-friendly
- hold how-to technology/sign-up sessions
- let them know online fundraising saves the charity money
- make the best of what you have — strong default content, and offer the name and phone number of a person they can call if they need help.
2. Use mail too.
Using mail and e-mail to stimulate people with their social-network fundraising is important. He recommended testing inexpensive personal touches, e.g., handwritten notes, brochures, handouts.
3. Use the telephone to motivate your participants.
Johnston said research by his firm has found that participants who are called on the phone during their fundraising raise a greater percentage of their target goal than those who don't receive a call.
Calling adds what Johnston calls "the human moment — that biological reaction of being in someone's presence and hearing someone's voice," he said.
Call participants to thank them for registering to fundraise for the event; to see if they need help; to tell them they're doing a great job and offer them encouragement and support during the campaign; to find out if the technology is working alright for them or if they have any questions; a week before the event, as a final, encouraging push for them to reach their goal; and when they reach their goal, to see if they'd like to raise their goal to raise more for the organization.
4. Show the network.
Create a public place for participants to see themselves and each other.
"Show other people who are doing the same thing," Johnston said. "Give them that sense of being in a church and looking down and seeing rows of other people who have shared values."
This helps stimulate activity. Entice participants to come back and check the network to see where they are on the scoreboard and if the team goal will be reached.
5. Use video.
It's cheap, effective and helps participants see and hear others in the network.
6. Cross-channel integration.
Put it all together in an innovative way to supercharge your participants.