Athena Software Blog
Four tech enhanced fundraising strategies for nonprofits
Posted by Adam Weinger on Aug. 8, 2016

Technology has changed the way nonprofits raise money. In the past, an organization would have to go door-to-door, asking for donations.

Now, charities can reach donors anywhere! They can text, email, tweet, and post, all while using the same traditional methods like direct mail, face-to-face asks, and phone appeals.

It seems like there’s a new fundraising software solution every other day. It would be exhausting to cover them all, so I’m just going to highlight four today:

  • Matching Gift Search Tools
  • Mobile Giving
  • Research Tools
  • Nonprofit Websites

For a comprehensive list of fundraising software solutions and resources, check out Double the Donation’s list.

1. Matching Gift Search Tools

Matching gifts help double the fundraising dollars that an organization raises.

Matching gift programs are one of the many corporate giving programs out there. When an employee gives to an eligible nonprofit, they can submit a matching gift request to their employer’s HR department.

If the nonprofit and the donation are eligible, the company will write a check to the nonprofit for the same amount.

The problem is, many donors simply don’t know that their employers offer such programs! And even if they do, the guidelines, forms, and instructions are buried in a handbook somewhere or are hidden on the company’s website.

Matching gift search tools help alleviate this problem and help nonprofits promote matching gift programs to their donors.

Nonprofits can place the tool directly on their websites, on their donation forms, or on acknowledgement screens.

Donors simply have to key in their employer’s name to access more information about their company’s specific guidelines.

Takeaway: Matching gift search tools help nonprofits generate more revenue. The more that donors know about matching gift programs, the more likely they are to have their donations doubled!

2. Mobile Giving

Mobile giving became popular during the Haiti earthquake in 2010. People could text a keyword to a specific number, and $5 or $10 was tacked onto their phone bill at the end of the month.

Text-to-give has come a long way since then, and now, nonprofits have more mobile giving options than ever!

Organizations aren’t limited to just texting to give. They can encourage their donors to use:

  • Mobile donation forms,
  • Mobile peer-to-peer platforms,
  • Mobile bidding,
  • QR codes,
  • And more!

Luckily, there are many mobile giving companies out there that offer nonprofits a whole host of mobile-based fundraising services.

Takeaway: Mobile giving and text-to-give are a no-brainer for nonprofits who want to raise money from donors on the go!

Bonus: Check out these 6 innovative fundraising ideas for nonprofits!

3. Research Tools

Whether you’re a small nonprofit or a large organization, you likely can’t keep track of every single supporter that you have.

You might also not have all of the information you need about your potential donors and prospects

There might be a major gift donor sitting right under your nose!

The thing is, you’ll never know unless you conduct some thorough research.

Instead of talking to your donors one-on-one (an exercise that could take a long time), you can use the services of a prospect screening company (DonorSearch is a great one).

Prospect research looks at your donors’ and prospects’ past giving histories and philanthropic tendencies and helps your nonprofit make an informed donation ask.

Without prospect research, your nonprofit could spend a ridiculous amount of time searching for a needle in a haystack (i.e., your next major gift donor in your pool of annual fund supporters).

Takeaway: Prospect research can help your nonprofit make better fundraising asks across the board. It’s one of the best tech-enhanced fundraising strategies out there!

Nonprofit website screenshot

4. Nonprofit Websites

You already know that a nonprofit’s website is insanely important.

Why is it included on this list, then?

Well, you’d be surprised how many nonprofits recognize the need for a great website but fail in the execution of that principle.

Make sure that your website is:

  • Branded. Donors should know that they’re on your organization’s website regardless of the page they’re on. Use the same fonts, colors, and similar images across your website and blog to establish your donors’ trust.
  • Functional. You want your website to work! Don’t drive people away by creating a website that crashes constantly. It should also work well on mobile devices and tablets.
  • Shareable. Make sure that your supporters can share your website (and donation page!) with their social networks. It’s pretty much free advertising for your nonprofit!

Takeaway: Your website has to be stellar if you want to raise more money from your donors.

Bonus: Check out the best nonprofit web design tips.

Well there you have it! Those are some of the best tech-enhanced fundraising strategies out there.

If you're interested in learning more about how Penelope case management software can help transform your nonprofit or social service agency today, contact us today and an evaluation specialist will be in touch!

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