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It doesn't get much edgier than a goal of raising $1.8 million in eight weeks — unless it's raising $1 million in one day. Those were the challenges that Joy FM, a contemporary Christian radio ministry in Florida, took on in its expansion campaign. In late summer 2012, a signal that would allow the station to cover some of the most densely populated metropolitan areas of West Central Florida became available. The station had saved $1 million toward expansion efforts but would need an additional $1.8 million to purchase the signal.
Making the effort even more challenging: "Very few of the people we were asking to give would benefit directly from this expansion. Those who will be most positively impacted cannot hear the appeal and do not even know the stations exists!" the submitting materials explained.
To meet its goal the station planned to raise $800,000 through personal solicitations with major donors, local businesses and organizations and — this is the cool part — raise another million dollars in a one-day, on-air fundraiser from the general audience. The goal was to get 1,000 to give $500 and 500 people to give $1,000.
The station pushed the one-day fundraiser through a concerted, multimedia effort for two months, then continued to thank and remind listeners of the need through the end of the year. When all was said and done, the station met 100 percent of its on-air goal and 79 percent of its personal solicitation goal. With fundraising continuing on into June 2013, the station anticipates that the new signal will be on air before the end of the year.
A lot of organizations might have been daunted by the two-month challenge before them in a situation like this. But Joy FM soldiered on. Kudos for taking it to the edge!
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