Engage your Community with Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

Alessandra Madrid 05/20/2015

In the past few years, peer-to-peer fundraising has been one of the most powerful tools in the fundraising toolbox. Peer-to-peer fundraising is a great way to more actively engage your current supporters and for them to take part in some of the work required for your organization to be able to make an impact. As any other of your fundraising campaigns, a peer-to-peer fundraising program requires plenty of planning before you allow supporters to fundraise on your behalf. Most importantly, you will need a good pitch and the appropriate tools in place to get them to create a campaign of their own.

Promote and Encourage Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

The first step you should take in order to begin engaging your community to fundraise through peer-to-peer fundraising is by promoting it. Many of your supporters may be somewhat familiar with the concept, but they probably don’t realize it is an option for your organization

Highlight the many benefits of them creating a fundraiser of their own:

A good way of doing this is through your website and social media profiles. Have a dedicated section for supporters interested in peer-to-peer fundraising, and promote this to your followers and fans on social media. This content should clearly state what peer-to-peer fundraising is, what you’d like their personal campaigns to be associated with, and a guide on how to create them.

Provide them with materials that can be easily downloaded, such as a nonprofit fact sheet, instructions on how to use online tools or approved logos, and sample letters of support. Again, communicate the benefits of using these online tools, and ask your supporters to encourage their connections to donate online!

Set Concrete Goals with Meaning

The key to peer-to-peer fundraising is the campaign’s backstory and impact. Unlike some appeals, which are simply to keep your organization’s current work and projects running, a peer-to-peer campaign should have a shorter life and should be perceived to have bigger impact.

Peer-to-Peer Nonprofit Fundraising Goals

For example, say your nonprofit is currently fundraising for a mission trip to help those affected by the earthquake in Nepal next month. A peer-to-peer fundraiser should approach this as an urgent, one time appeal in which they will fund a large portion of your trip’s supplies: Fund 30% of the Nepal Mission in 30 Days or 300 lbs of grains in 30 Days for Nepal.

Your peer-to-peer fundraisers should associate their campaign’s goal to a common goal for your organization, this will attract more donors in your supporters network than a campaign without a concrete goal and a big impact meaning would.

Teach Best Practices and Provide Support

What might be a bit daunting about a peer-to-peer fundraising campaign is that your staff won’t have as much control over the content and the way these campaignBest Practices for Peer-to-Peer Fundraisings are promoted. Therefore, you won’t have much control over the success of each individual campaigns. To combat this, aside from teaching them how to use your tools, you should also be teaching your supporters best practices of creating online fundraising campaigns.

Typically a peer-to-peer fundraiser includes the following:

Provide resources and examples to your online cheerleaders, so they can produce the best content and the most compelling campaigns that can ultimately raise the most funds for your nonprofit. It’s also important that you provide them with quick, easy to access support for when questions arise. Have a part-time or full-time staff member that is familiar with your online donation platform that can provide personal service to your peer-to-peer fundraisers.

Celebrate Your Supporters and Their Successes

Just as youCelebrate Succesful Peer-to-Peer Campaigns would celebrate your organization’s internal fundraising successes, you should also be celebrating those of your awesome peer-to-peer fundraisers! This will not only provide the positive reinforcement your supporters need, but it can also encourage more of your supporters to become fundraisers for your nonprofit. Build an effective recognition program through different benchmarks; recognition does not mean you need to spend funds on gifts. A social media shout out or a mention in your monthly newsletter will give your peer-to-peer fundraisers the recognition and appreciation they need to continue fundraising!

Although peer-to-peer requires more internal planning and continuous support, it is definitely a great way for your current donors to continue to be engaged and involved with your organization. Peer-to-peer fundraising is a win-win for any nonprofit as it will also grow your online giving network, without your staff having to manage it. Ready to start your nonprofit’s peer-to-peer fundraising program? Learn how our tools can help you!