Recent events have put a tremendous strain on organizations and sports teams that are responsible for boosting their own budget with fundraising activities. Not only are many students and parents facing tighter household budgets, but many of the time-tested avenues for high school and extracurricular fundraisers aren't practical.
Another complication is the payment options you can offer for fundraisers — old standbys of cash and checks are no longer as common as credit cards and online payments in day-to-day life, and that makes donating money to fundraisers inconvenient.
Organizations can adapt with a multitude of transaction options, but as TrueSense notes in an article about how payment methods can affect fundraising efforts, "All these new payment methods create complexity for organizations that can lead to donor dissatisfaction."
This leaves organizations dependent on fundraising with two new obligations: finding the payment options that work best for their audience and implementing them in a way that facilitates giving while minimizing donor dissatisfaction. In other words, what contactless fundraising tactics can you implement to make donating as easy as possible?
In this post, we’ll discuss how contactless fundraising works, how it integrates with different fundraising events, and how to smoothly implement it for your own organization's fundraisers.
The Rise of Contactless Fundraising
COVID-19's impact on fundraising can't be overstated. Bake-sales, door-to-door product sales, dances, and social fundraising events were all but eliminated for two years, putting a severe strain on the budget of extracurriculars. Even while restrictions continue to lessen, many schools and youth organizations are cautious about returning to traditional fundraising options.
As a result, organizations drastically shifted their strategies to virtual options, such as email-based campaigns, online ordering options for sales-based fundraisers and branded merchandise, and other new technology-based options. These new strategies automatically increased the use of contactless payment methods like credit card transactions, Apple Pay, Venmo, and other options that require digital wallets.
This is paving the way for sports teams, bands, and other school organizations to strengthen their fundraising efforts with a mix of contactless fundraising and traditional (but more versatile) options as schools return to in-person learning and events.
Contactless Tactics to Adopt Now
If your organization wants to pursue contactless options to meet your fundraising goals and secure your budget, we recommend diversifying your tactics so you can reach as many different audiences as possible and create unique events or fundraisers that are more likely to hold your audience's attention and realize a higher return on investment. Some of the most popular contactless strategies include:
Call-a-thons are phone-based campaigns where your participants call past donors or target audiences to secure pledges or donations. Successful call-a-thons often follow a set script or have a core goal that motivates the volunteers and engages the prospective donors. This can take place as a one-time event or across multiple nights to achieve a larger goal.
Social sharing is more of a tactic than a type of contactless event. Creating engaging posts for all of your organization's social media channels is a great way to spread the word about fundraisers, especially to audiences who prefer digital communication to in-person or call-based communications. Share the link to your fundraising page multiple times through posts scheduled for the length of your fundraiser.
Email fundraising is another great way to inform your audience and make it easy for interested recipients to make a donation. You can ask for donations, inform audiences about upcoming events or expenses that rely on donations, and give them easy access to your landing pages and donation pages. Email campaigns aren't just a good technique for spreading the word; you can use analytics to assess the results of your emails.
Hybrid events combine in-person and virtual aspects to create events that anyone would feel comfortable taking part in. You can invite in-person donors to an event that has several virtual or recorded elements so online invitees can also participate. This can secure more funds through ticket sales or have free admission but encourage both types of attendees to donate.
How Fundraising Platforms Fit In
When your fundraising strategies become more complex through a mix of in-person, traditional, virtual, and online campaign-based approaches, each individual transaction becomes more complex. As a result, the entire project can be incredibly difficult to track and manage. That's why more and more organizations are using a fundraising platform to organize all of the different approaches, track results, and ensure donors have an excellent experience. The right fundraising platform will help your organization with:
You can't use old-fashioned cash-based payments with virtual donations, and many in-person donors are turning away from cash, as well. But instead of renting a card reader and taking on the potential liability of unsecured credit card information or incorrect transactions, a fundraising platform will facilitate easy online donations and orders through whichever payment type your audience prefers.
Today's fundraisers use less paper. Paper catalogs have shifted to online catalogs, flyers and tickets have been virtualized into emails and QR codes, and receipts are given online. A paperless ordering system through a fundraising platform makes it easy for potential donors to buy products or choose their preferred donation amount through a well-designed interface. Not only does this make the experience more fun, but it allows your volunteers to more easily manage their goals and for you to track and ensure the fulfillment of orders.
Use Contactless Fundraising to Boost Your Fundraising Efforts
COVID-19 restrictions continued concerns about outbreaks, and a growing shift away from cash-based donations are all making it harder than ever for school and youth organizations to reach fundraising goals. Launch Fundraising is here to help with an easy-to-use fundraising platform that can support your fundraising strategies, make it easier to oversee different event types, and more. Contact us today to learn more about our platform or to see what other contactless fundraising strategies are on the rise!