Meet your supporters where they are — the age-old nonprofit communications adage that stands the test of time. And your supporters are most likely on Facebook. Facebook fundraising allows you to recruit your more gung-ho supporters to raise money for a great cause on a platform where they’re already spending their time.
Taking a step back, fundraising on Facebook can take a few different shapes. You could add a donate button to your page (or post), post about fundraising on your nonprofit page or run paid ads to promote your campaign. These can all be accomplished through your nonprofit’s page. The other option is to use Facebook’s Fundraisers and let your supporters (or staff) fundraise for you, and that’s the method we’ll be focusing on through the remainder of this post.
Before you can get started organizing a supporter-run fundraiser on Facebook, you’ll need to sign up to use the Fundraising Tools and set up how you’d like to receive donations through Facebook. The Fundraisers tool allows your supporters to set up a dedicated fundraising page for your nonprofit and share it with their friends.
Since you won’t actually be running the page, you’ll need to equip a supporter with the tools and know-how they need to create and manage a successful Facebook Fundraiser.
Facebook Fundraising Kit
For your first Facebook Fundraiser, it’s helpful to do some groundwork to prepare. The process is fairly simple, but a little planning can set the Fundraiser up for success and take any unnecessary stress off of your supporter. When you’re reaching out and asking someone to do your organization a favor, forethought, organization and a template to work with are always a nice touch.
Provide your supporter with everything they’ll need to set up the campaign on Facebook, including:
Many of your supporters won’t even know where to start. Some simple how-to instructions on how to get from their personal news feed to creating a Fundraiser could be a huge help.
In general, the title of the campaign should give Facebook visitors a good idea of where the money will go once all is said and done. If you’re raising money to cover the adoption fees for five stray dogs, a suggested Fundraiser title could be something like “Give Rescue Dogs Forever Homes.”
Provide your fundraiser with some potential photos to include, maybe even a video. Tell them where to find the gallery, or maybe send along 3 possibilities in an email along with the Facebook fundraising kit. However you decide to send them, remind supporters where they can find the photos in the kit.
Provide them with some template content to fill in the description area. Briefly explain your cause and mission, then let visitors know what the campaign is raising money for. Try to be as specific as possible, but encourage fundraisers to add their personal connection to your nonprofit.
Since they’re not nonprofit fundraising experts, it’s likely that your supporter will need some guidance choosing a goal. Suggest specific levels that align with your standard fundraising needs. For example, it might cost you $200 to sponsor a rescue dog. So, to sponsor five dogs, their fundraising goal would need to be $1,000.
Considering all of the different factors, like how many friends your supporter has and how long the campaign will last, work with your fundraiser and development staff to determine an ambitious goal within the realm of reason.
The first post should be a description of the campaign with a personal spin included by the fundraiser. Give them something to work with here! Prompts, like “I’m passionate about this cause because…” could be a nice touch.
Since these supporters aren’t on the inside of your organization, it’s helpful to provide additional guidance to ensure that they have what they need to accurately relay your standard messaging, facts and figures to potential donors. Compile helpful content, like a description of the issue your nonprofit addresses, your mission, vision, impact and any facts and figures you have handy.
Within the actual Facebook fundraising kit, you could include that content in its entirety, a list of links to the content or even a downloadable fact sheet. Choose the delivery method and setup that makes the most sense for your nonprofit and supporters. Whichever method you choose, you’ll want to make sure they can pull from this content as they’d like throughout the campaign.
It could also be helpful to provide your supporters with some best practices for running the fundraising page once it’s all set up. There’s a good chance this is their first time running a Facebook Fundraiser as well. We outlined a few for you to pass on:
- Share the campaign with close friends and family first. Once you’ve had a few donations, you can share it with all of your friends. Those you’re not as close to are less likely to donate to a page without much support.
- The first post on the page should be an explanation of the nonprofit’s mission and what you want to do with the money raised.
- Provide regular updates about your Fundraiser as well as encouragements through additional posts. Try to post at least once a week, but more often if you can!
- Each time someone makes a public donation, there’s also a post that’s made in the Fundraiser. It’s a great idea to comment on each of those to acknowledge the gift.
- Thank your donors by tagging them in posts.
The more prepared your fundraisers are, the more likely the campaign will be successful. To make this process of building out your starter kit as simple as possible, we created a template Facebook Fundraiser kit for you to download and customize for your organization.
Get The Facebook Fundraiser Kit
Use our kit to create your own Fundraiser Kit, unique to your nonprofit and fundraisers. Find tips on setting up a Fundraiser on Facebook, the content to include in your kit and advice on running the Fundraiser. You'll also find some great examples of fundraising kits from other nonprofits to inspire you as you piece together your own.
Reach Out to Supporters
Once your kit is ready to send out, you’ll need to have a person (or group of people!) in mind for the job. This person should be reliable, communicative and Facebook savvy. If your organization has social media ambassadors, they’re already perfectly primed to fundraise on Facebook!
Otherwise, take a look at the people who have interacted with your nonprofit by sharing content or posting comments in the past. This is a good sign that they could be willing to take the next step with a Fundraiser. And, when you provide everything they’ll need to get set up, you can make a much more compelling ask. Reach out to them through your usual method of communication. This could be Facebook, email or however you typically communicate with this particular supporter.
“Hey, [supporter]. We’ve loved seeing you pop up on our Facebook page over the past few months! We’re currently pulling together all of the necessary materials for a Facebook Fundraiser, and it’d be awesome to have such a savvy Facebook user running it for us. Is that something you’d be interested in helping us out with?”
If you find this method of fundraising particularly successful this time around, you can even put a process in place for future supporters to reach out for opportunities through your website. It can be a simple form on your fundraising page or even a contact number and email to reach out to express interest. Some nonprofits have even made their kits widely available on their websites, within a Ways to Give section or even as blog posts. (Check out the template linked above to see examples and glean some inspiration for your kit from real nonprofits.)
Have you tried Facebook fundraising? Did you provide a kit to help fundraisers get started? Anything else you’d include in a Facebook Fundraiser kit? Let’s chat in the comments.