In the past, alumni associations were restricted to people who attended the same learning institution. Nowadays, the term has been expanded to include the former employees of a company who are using the same platform to gain business opportunities and drive recruitment. In both instances, alumni associations have proven beneficial for members in networking and giving back to communities. One of the hardest things when coordinating an alumni association is raising funds as only 22% of members donate according to a 2015 study.
Social fundraising is the answer to raising funds for your alumni association within the shortest possible time. This entails reaching out to the members of your association through Twitter and Facebook, among other social media platforms. While in theory this leads to higher returns and increased participation, this is not always the case more so when you do not employ the right tactics.
The following are the four best social fundraising techniques for your alumni association.
The ‘’ Direct Ask’’ Approach
In this approach, you will post a message on your social media pages asking friends and your online community to donate to a cause. While it seems easy enough, the ‘’ direct ask’’ approach might suffer a setback from the ‘’bystander effect’’ where people assume the call is not for them and expect someone else to donate. As such, the best choice is to integrate this approach with other social fundraising strategies like emails.
The ‘’Tag and Thank’’ Method
In this option, you will first email your alumni members, asking them for donations. When the donations start trickling in, you will tag then thank them on their social media platforms. This is one of the most effective social fundraising strategies because it taps into a powerful psychological phenomenon called social influence. It asserts that people love being recognized for their good acts, therefore the tag and thank approach allows them to stand out as philanthropists among their peers.
The ‘’What’s The News’’ Technique
This approach aims to update the members of your alumni community platform on the progress of your fundraising after you have emailed them asking for donations. In the ‘’what’s the news’’ approach, you will set targets for different periods of your fundraiser then continually update your members on the progress. When people see you hitting targets, they are motivated to give to the same and become a part of the winning team. The goals through different periods should ideally increase for you to get the highest fundraising returns and create an urgency for donating.
The Gift Grab Bag Method
With this alternative, you will tap into people’s love for gifts and reward them for different donation amounts. The gift grab bag approach will broaden your donor base more so when you opt for personalized gifts. Gifts that also call for the recipient’s participation, like cooking sets and toys, motivate your donors to give more.
According to recent statistics on online fundraising for non-profits, donations have increased to 23% from 15% last year. These are encouraging numbers for your alumni’s social fundraising project provided you use the right approaches. While each of the above techniques can work well when fundraising for your alumni association, you can reap more benefits by combining them. Nevertheless, be careful not to mix too many strategies and end up muddling your campaign.