Finding Donors for Your Nonprofit in Three Easy Steps
Most nonprofits operate on a shoestring budget, which means that pulling in new financial donations on a regular basis is an absolute must. However, attracting new donors and donations isn’t a simple feat—the task requires dedicated work. Though many nonprofits employ individuals who specialize in applying for grants and fundraising, here are a few tips from The Fundraising Coach on how your nonprofit can attract new donors and donations on a limited budget.
Believe it or not, but 70 percent of our nation’s population gives to nonprofits on a regular basis, with the majority receiving their donation dollars from average U.S. households. So, while a nonprofit might assume that a single, wealthy donor is the easiest way to access a steady flow of cash donations, that’s not usually the case. Instead, it’s average Americans who provide the funds that nonprofits need to survive. These individual are all around you, but you may have missed them, because you didn’t make “the ask.” To start your list, ask these simple questions:
- Do you know the potential donor?
- Does the person care about your cause or mission?
- Do they have money to give?
In order to pull in more donors, it’s important to expose your nonprofit to the broader public. Host events, invite the public to tour your facility or ask for volunteers to get involved. Seek publicity and advertise as much as possible. Basically, you should work hard to spread the word regarding your nonprofit’s overall goals and mission. You can also set up public fundraisers and crowd funding campaigns, reach out to corporations or schools that might have a vested interest in your cause, or you can ask your board to make introductions to their network.
Many nonprofits might assume that donors will be happy with the knowledge that their donations are helping to support a good cause, but a nonprofit should put in a little extra effort to show their appreciation to their donors. In addition to sending out personal thank-you cards and donation receipts, give your donors options to get more involved with your organization. Inviting them to volunteer, asking them for advice in their field, offering them a spot on an advisory board, or sharing the impact of their donation on your clients are just a few ways to keep them engaged. Remember – most donations come from long-time donors, so it’s vital that you let your donors know that you appreciate them.
Following these three easy steps is a great starting place for many community-based nonprofits that probably have many donors right under their noses (or in their volunteer pools).