The 7 Steps of Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Success

February 25, 2019 Louise Sparks

Donor behaviour is radically shifting. What donors want from the causes they support is transforming. How they engage with those causes is also changing. Only organisations that are prepared to respond to this shift will be able to engage their supporters at scale and maximise new opportunities to grow their supporter base. This is where peer-to-peer fundraising comes in. With these tips, you can enhance your 2019 strategies and get the needle moving! 

1. Identify and understand your audience

To fully take advantage of a peer-to-peer campaign, you’ll need to understand your audience. There are several potential players in a peer-to-peer fundraising event. You can expect support from participants/fundraisers who are directly affected by your cause, who are closely related to it somehow, or who have no direct relation other than a friend asking them to participate.

2. Prep your campaign

Will it last for a certain amount of time? Will it last until you reach a monetary goal? Will it just be a one-day thing, like #GivingTuesday? You’ll need to define the parameters of your campaign to reach out to your audience in the most effective way and to get the most out of your campaign.

3. Research and select a peer-to-peer software

This is an important part of the process of starting and maintaining successful peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns. Your research will probably begin long before you make a purchase, but make sure you have a list of features you’d like, and find a solution that fits your current needs but also has room to grow with you.

4. Plan your communications strategy

Inviting people to participate, donate, and spread the word is a crucial part of making your event or campaign a success. Be clear about your goals, but also make sure you’re telling your cause’s story. This emotional connection—tied with a specific ask—will help attract supporters of all kinds. Using multiple communication platforms (social media, email marketing, etc.) will also expand your reach.

5. Use teams, if possible

Teams are likely to get more people involved, and more people is everything when it comes to peer-to-peer fundraising. Every supporter is a potential participant, volunteer, fundraiser, and lifelong contributor. Assembling teams inspires a sense of gamification that drives (healthy) competition, which can help your cause raise even more money.

6. Remember, retention is king

Now that you’ve engaged with these participants/supporters, keep them coming back! Gathering accurate contact information during a peer-to-peer campaign is one of the most important things—if not the most important thing—a non-profit can do. You don’t want supporters to engage in 2019 and then disappear by 2020. And yes, creating a great experience during an event or campaign is key, but thanking your participants after the fact goes a long way. In addition to thanking them, you need to invite them back and ask them to invite others. But you can’t do this without knowing how to reach them.

7. Engage Generation Xers

Did you know that 45% of Generation Xers donate to crowdfunding/peer-to-peer campaigns? And 56% of them attend fundraising events. Peer-to-peer campaigns are the most effective way to get them involved in your cause, and you need them now more than ever: in 2018, Generation Xers donated more overall than Matures for the first time.

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