With fundraising moving increasingly online, many development directors may question whether offline fundraising ideas are even worth it anymore. Some nonprofit professionals reason that their crowdfunding campaign is online, and that’s where their outreach should be as well.
Even if your campaign collects donations online, however, you still need offline campaign elements to make your fundraising more personal. These six unique fundraising ideas consist of both online and offline tactics so you can leverage a variety of different fundraising methods for your next campaign. Let’s get started!
1. Discount Card Fundraiser
Hosting a discount card fundraiser seamlessly mixes online and offline fundraising techniques. This fundraiser works by finding local businesses in your community that would be willing to offer your supporters a discount. These businesses may include restaurants, shops, salons, and more. Then, you can work with a product fundraiser provider to create and sell discount cards to your supporters.
Your supporters will love the chance to save on everyday purchases and give back to your cause at the same time. Consider leveraging both online tools by selling your discount cards on your website and offline methods by selling them at your next in-person fundraising event.
2. Matching Gifts
If you’re not promoting matching gift opportunities to your supporters, then you’re missing out on free funding. Many companies will match their employees’ donations to support the causes they care about at a 1:1 or 2:1 ratio. As a result, nonprofits can double or even triple their donation revenue.
But many donors don’t know that they’re eligible for matching gifts, so it’s worthwhile to run a matching gift campaign to spread the word. Designate a time each year when you’ll focus on promoting matching gifts, whether that’s through your newsletter, social media, direct mail, or your website.
Another option is to use matching gift software to encourage donors to request matching gifts year-round. Matching gift software allows donors to check their eligibility right from your donation page and easily submit a matching gift request. Some platforms even feature auto-submission capabilities that will submit requests to companies on behalf of your donors. This feature makes it even easier for donors to participate and give even more to your cause.
3. Food Fundraiser
Who wouldn’t love to support their favorite cause by purchasing their favorite food? Food fundraisers are a crowd-pleaser for that very reason. From popcorn to pizza, there are so many different options for food your nonprofit could sell to support your mission.
One of the most popular food products to sell is cookie dough. According to ABC Fundraising, you can earn up to 80% profit from a cookie dough fundraiser. Plus, you can offer a variety of flavors for your supporters to enjoy. Whether your supporters like classic flavors or unique ones like pumpkin pie spice and strawberry shortcake, you can cater to every taste and earn a ton of funds for your beneficiaries.
4. Google Ad Grants
One of the best fundraising opportunities exclusive to nonprofits is the Google Ad Grant. Through this program, Google offers eligible nonprofits $10,000 a month in ad credits that they can spend to create ads that appear at the top of Google search results. As long as you maintain eligibility and compliance, your grant will renew each month, allowing you to continuously create ads that promote your nonprofit.
While people typically view the Google Ad Grant as a marketing tool, it has immense fundraising power. You can easily use your ads to promote your latest fundraiser, crowdfunding campaign, or fundraising event. All you have to do is choose relevant keywords and direct users to your fundraising page on your website.
For example, if you’re an animal shelter promoting your upcoming walkathon, you may choose keywords such as:
- Walkathon to support animal rescue
- Animal shelter fundraising event
- Walking to support animal adoptions
- Local animal shelter fundraising event sign-up
Then, you can link to your walkathon registration page and encourage people to sign up.
While participating in the Google Ad Grant program is easy, it does take some time to set up your account and keep things running smoothly. If you need some help, Getting Attention recommends reaching out to a Google Grant agency that can help you determine your eligibility, complete your program application, create your ads, and maintain account compliance.
Barbecues are a great way to get people together and build the social proof you need for your crowdfunding campaign. Not only can you raise money by charging ticket admission for the event, but you can also add on additional fundraising opportunities such as raffles and auctions.
Get a few team members together before the event to go over talking points for the campaign. Task these team members with talking to people on a conversational level during the event, sowing the seeds of the campaign’s mission. Once a person hears the best selling points from a few people, all worded a little differently, and then the final pitch from you—they will be ready for any ask you make.
6. Dance Marathon
Dance marathons are an increasingly popular fundraising idea, especially for schools. Students will love the chance to dance all night and collect money for their school from their friends’ and family’s sponsorship. However, this type of event can work for other nonprofits as well.
To make the planning process easier, consider leveraging peer-to-peer fundraising software. This solution will allow your dancers to set up their own fundraising pages online to secure donations and sponsorships. Then, all you’ll have to handle is the offline aspects of the event, such as the venue, music, and food.
For best fundraising results, always use a combination of online and offline fundraising tactics to keep your supporters engaged. Whichever methods you choose, remember to thank your donors promptly and show that you appreciate their contributions. Without them, you wouldn’t be able to raise money to support your cause and help your beneficiaries.