Social media is an incredibly powerful tool, helping connect nonprofits with audiences all across the world. In addition to building awareness and driving engagement, social media can also be used as an effective fundraising tool!
In this post, we are going to share four social media fundraising examples to show you how you can leverage social media strategies to raise more money for your mission.
Ready to learn more? Let’s dig in!
Importance and Impact of Social Media Fundraising
Social media fundraising is a great way to connect with your audiences, meeting them where they are to raise funds for your organization.
So many people use social media now. In fact, it’s reported that there are about 4.9 billion users worldwide, so if you’re not using it for your nonprofit, you’re missing out.
The premise is simple. You upload a compelling photo or video with an inspirational caption, and it could drive someone to stop what they’re doing and engage with you. This could be to give back, learn about your mission, re-share your posts, or to even figure out how to get involved.
You can make it easy for your audience to donate on social media by linking to the donation page in your post or profile, depending on the platform.
In a perfect world, you’ll watch the donations roll in as soon as you hit post! However, it may take some time to learn the ins and outs of each platform as there are different social media strategies. We’ll share some of the best social media fundraising examples and the tips you can take away from each below.
Once you hit your stride, you’ll start to see the difference social media can make in raising funds, driving engagement, and even recruiting volunteers.
Benefits of Social Media Fundraising
Social media fundraising can be intimidating, especially if you’re unfamiliar with the platforms and don’t know what to expect.
Still, the potential benefits far outweigh any concerns you may have, so don’t be afraid to explore and try something new. We’ve outlined a few of the top benefits of social media fundraising below.
Reach Large Audiences
One of the top benefits of social media is that you can reach large audiences through it.
Not only can your loyal and engaged donors follow you, but others can discover your organization organically through in-feed posts or from others tagging you.
You can even reach new demographics with your social media fundraising posts, which is a great way to build and foster relationships with first-time donors. Additionally, social media gives you the opportunity to catch the eye of potential volunteers who want to make a difference and engage with your nonprofit.
Social media fundraising is a great way to drive awareness without breaking the bank.
Unlike other forms of fundraising, you don’t have to pay a lot upfront to play in the space. For example, there aren’t direct costs to print or mail anything. Instead, in most cases, all you need is a smartphone and someone with an eye for good pictures to get started!
There are indirect costs of labor as you look at the time and resources you use to create the content, but that will still cost less than physically printing and mailing materials. You can also pay a nominal fee to sponsor posts on various platforms if you want to build visibility immediately vs. growing organically.
Make Donating Easy
Social media is such a pervasive part of our lives, so running fundraising campaigns on it allows you to capitalize on an already captive audience. And when you provide opportunities to donate directly from a smartphone, you make it easy for individuals to give by removing barriers to execution.
Here are just a few ways you can make donating easy on social media:
Add a donate sticker to your Instagram stories, and people will be directed to give when they click on it.
Start a fundraiser on Facebook and encourage others to donate and share—it even has a progress bar to show how close you are to your goal.
Tweet out a short link with a quick call to action to give—bonus points if you add the link to your bio, too, for maximum visibility.
There are countless benefits to social media fundraising, and in the next section, we are going to show you how powerful the right social media strategies can be.
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Social media fundraising is a great way to raise money for your nonprofit. Below we’ve shared four great examples of effective social media fundraising so that you can learn from their success.
1. ALS Ice Bucket Challenge
The Ice Bucket Challenge to benefit the ALS Association was one of the first viral charity campaigns, and it raised more than $135 million to fund research. The premise was simple: Donate to the ALS Association or dump ice water over your head. Thankfully for the ALS Association, millions of people did both!
Videos spread like wildfire across Facebook, Instagram, and Youtube. At the end of your video, you nominated friends to do the same.
Why this worked: This campaign was successful because it was easy and fun. It tapped into the competitive yet silly nature of social media, and everyone took part in it, even celebrities. Best of all, the ALS Association always remained at the heart of the campaign.
2. No-Shave November
In November, some men choose to forgo shaving, growing a beard or a mustache as part of No-Shave November, which is meant to drive conversations around cancer awareness.
Those who participate are encouraged to donate the money they would have otherwise spent on grooming products to charity, helping cancer patients who can’t grow their hair because of treatment.
To participate, you can create fundraising pages, share posts on social media, and support others’ campaigns using the #noshavenovember hashtag to increase awareness.
Some participants document their journeys online, sharing selfies or videos on all social media platforms—Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, TikTok, YouTube, Snapchat, and even LinkedIn—not only as they grow their facial hair but also when they shave it.
Why this worked: This fundraising campaign is so successful because it’s a conversation starter. This campaign encourages discussion, and it does so in a way that’s accessible—plus, it’s an excuse for men not to shave for a month!
3. Stand Up for Ukraine
Many people posted on their social media channels in support of Ukraine when the war broke out. Millions of people fled their homes or became displaced as a result of the war, causing a humanitarian crisis in the country.
As a result, many people started to send food and aid to the country to help. On April 8th, 2022, Global Citizen held a social media rally to help raise funds and pledge support. On this day, celebrities and others joined together to call upon world leaders and each other to pledge their support.
Through posting images in solidarity, they were able to spark conversation on this day, taking over the trending hashtags in support of Ukraine. Even Instagram’s official channel joined in with their donate sticker for the day!
This social media movement, along with in-person fundraising events, raised more than $10.1 billion. The donation posts helped raise awareness, encouraged others to give, and drove visibility to the cause in meaningful and measurable ways.
Why this worked: The war in Ukraine rocked the world, and so many people wanted to help. Utilizing social media was an easy way for people to get involved and show their support.
4. Mutts of the Midway
Mutts of the Midway is a small animal rescue nonprofit, and they lean heavily into their social media presence to raise funds.
Some of their campaigns are targeted for specific reasons, like providing transportation for animals who have been displaced due to a natural disaster, while others are more general to support their overall operations. Mutts of the Midway is so successful in their social media fundraising because they draw on their networks to support a cause that is important to their local community.
While these campaigns are small and grassroots-driven, they still raise thousands throughout the year.
Why this worked: Mutts of the Midway are able to broaden their reach and raise funds by capitalizing on others sharing their posts. They also share success stories on their page, which allows supporters to see the full lifecycle and impact of their gifts.
Wrapping Up: The Next Steps
Social media fundraising can help you raise funds, increase awareness of your cause, and build engagement with new and existing followers.
The social media fundraising examples shared in this post should give you an idea of how you can make the different platforms work for you. As you develop your own social media strategies, remember to remain authentic to who you are as an organization.
For more nonprofit fundraising tips, guides, and resources, check out Instrumentl today.
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