Blackbaud Online Express + Double the Donation Integration Guide

Does your nonprofit use Blackbaud Online Express for your online donation forms? Are you looking to incorporate matching gift information into both your Blackbaud Online Express donation pages as well as across your organization’s broader fundraising?

If so then this guide is for you.

Double the Donation’s Relationship with Blackbaud Online Express:

Blackbaud Online Express is a popular provider of donation forms and fundraising tools for nonprofits.

Double the Donation is the leading provider of employee matching gift data and tools to nonprofits.

This guide was put together to help organizations who use Blackbaud Online Express’s donation forms incorporate Double the Donation’s employee matching gift plugin into their fundraising pages and into their primary websites.

Please note that Blackbaud Online Express and Double the Donation are two separate companies.

Steps to Integrate Double the Donation’s Matching Gift Search Tool with Blackbaud Online Express:

At risk of stating the obvious, the below steps and screenshots are applicable to organizations which already have an account with Double the Donation (Premium Plan) and Blackbaud Online Express.

If you don’t have an account with Double the Donation you can learn more about our service or view our annual service fees and start a risk-free trial.

In terms of integrating Double the Donation’s matching gift search tools into your nonprofit’s fundraising strategy, there are two primary options:

  1. Adding our plugin to the confirmation page of an Online Express donation form
  2. Across Your Other Fundraising Channels (Use your other systems)

Let’s start by looking at how to incorporate Double the Donation’s plugin into an Online Express donation form.

Note: If you have already installed the Online Express donation form to your website, skip to Step #2.

Step #1: Log into your organization’s Raiser’s Edge account. Grab the Javascript embed code with the following instructions:

 

Step #2: Copy the Online Express Javascript embed code in the popup, and navigate to the page editor on your website where you want the form to appear. We’re going to modify the code by adding Double the Donation’s code snippet to the Javascript embed code. Add the following after the Online Express code:

Your page editor should now look like the following:

Step #3: Change the “XXXXXXXX” to the API Key as seen in your Double the Donation admin portal.

Step #4: Save the changes to the webpage, and view it in the browser. Test the donation form and ensure that the Double the Donation plugin appears on the confirmation page. It should look like this:

Your donation form now incorporates Double the Donation’s searchable matching gift database so donors can easily access company specific matching gift forms, guidelines, and instructions.

 

Next let’s look at how to incorporate Double the Donation’s matching gift plugin across your broader fundraising

Step #1: Create a dedicated matching gift page on your main website.

Create a dedicated matching gift page on your own website

This is all done by using Double the Donation’s primary matching gift plugin which can be found in your organization’s Double the Donation account management pages. You’ll want to use the following steps:

  1. Log into your Double the Donation account
  2. Access the embed code
  3. Copy the embed code to the dedicated matching gift page on your own site
  4. Our searchable plugin will automatically load

Add Our Matching Gift Search Directly to Your Own Website

Step #2: Direct donors to your dedicated matching gift page across your broader fundraising efforts.

Create a dedicated matching gift page on your own website

This includes in locations such as:

For our complete marketing toolkit which includes suggested marketing locations, downloadable graphics, sample wording, and examples visit https://doublethedonation.com/marketing-matching-gifts/.

Have Questions?

Use one of the following ways to learn more about Double the Donation’s service:

Optimize your membership application forms with this helpful guide!

Membership Applications: 5 Strategies to Boost Enrollment

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BOOST YOUR MEMBER RETENTION RATES! GRAB OUR FREE MEMBER ENGAGEMENT CHECKLIST..

Supporters who make it all the way to your membership application are the superstars of your nonprofit. They care about your organization so much that they don’t want to just donate — they want to make a long-term commitment to your mission.

The last thing you want is for your membership application form to be so burdensome that it breaks that momentum. It happens more often than you might think!

To ensure that your nonprofit can bring as many members as possible on board without incident, you need to craft a membership application form that gets your constituents excited about joining, not annoyed at the effort necessary to complete the form.

Not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered with these top five changes you can make to your application form to boost enrollment in your membership program:

  1. Ensure easy access to your membership application.
  2. Implement intuitive formatting on your membership form.
  3. Include the right balance of application form fields to fill out.
  4. Optimize the design of your membership application form.
  5. Follow up with those who complete the membership application.

Ready to revamp your form? Pull up your nonprofit’s membership or association management software, and let’s dive in!


Ensure that your supporters can reach your membership application.

1. Ensure easy access to your membership application.

The most basic hurdle your potential members have to cross before they even reach your membership application is finding it. Why make it hard for them?

Depending on the type of form you’re using, you have a few options for getting it in front of the right supporters:

  • Paper form: Send paper membership application forms in the mail to engaged donors, and ensure you always have some printed out at the ready at your front desk and at any events you host.
  • Online form: Link to your online form in emails, on your website, on your social media profiles, on event registration pages, and on your donation page. Some web-based membership application forms even embed directly into a website or email.

Online forms are much easier for your nonprofit to process, but you might appreciate having paper forms available in some situations (e.g., at fundraising events).

A majority of your members who fill out an online form get to it through your website instead of an email or social media post. You should pay special attention to your membership application’s location on your website. It should be hosted prominently, with its own tab in your main navigation bar, a link in website footer, and a plugin on your membership program information page, like in the following example image:

 

Make your membership application easy to find on your website.

Another highly effective place to include your membership form is your online checkout, especially if members in your nonprofit receive benefits such as discounts or priority registration for events. The right membership management software can integrate your membership application into the checkout process, applying any relevant benefits to the same purchase when membership is added to the cart.

Takeaway: Make sure your supporters can find your membership application without having to search for it.


Make your membership application form as easy to use as possible.

2. Implement intuitive formatting on your membership form.

Once your members land on your form, the challenge becomes keeping them there.

The easier you can make your form to complete, the fewer potential members who will abandon it.

With a paper form, you should make instructions as simple and direct as possible so you don’t have to waste time sending it back or calling to follow up on improperly formatted answers. In as many cases as possible, provide a discrete set of options for applicants to choose from instead of leaving them an empty field to fill out. Checking a box leaves less room for error and wasted administrative time calling to fix the problem.

See how a paper application form formatted with boxes where possible, like the following, would leave less room for error? When your staff is inputting the information from the paper form into your membership management database, they’re less likely to need clarification from the applicant:

Make your membership application as easy as possible to fill out and process later.

An online form offers many more opportunities to make application easy for your members and your administrative team. Your membership application form might be able to support some intuitive features but not others, depending on the software used to build it. If possible, though, you should try to include:

  • Conditional logic. Skip pages or populate information based on answers to previous questions on the form.
  • Auto-population. Fill in information automatically from a donor profile or the supporter’s browser.
  • Long time-out. If your supporters have to leave the form without completing it, make sure they can pick back up later where they left off.

The trick is to collect the information you need without asking too much of your members.

Bonus! These are also great features to include in your membership renewal application. To learn more about membership renewal, head over to Doubleknot’s guide to membership renewal letters.

Takeaway: Don’t make your membership application form too hard to fill out.


Don't discourage potential members by making your membership application too long.

3. Include the right balance of application form fields to fill out.

So what information is it you’re looking for? Since you know the value of a comprehensive member profile for future solicitations, you want to gather as much information as you can about your members from the get-go.

But if you overload your membership application form with too many fields to fill out — especially if you ask for information your members would have to look up instead of knowing off the top of their heads — supporters will simply abandon your form.

Striking the proper balance is key. Ask for enough information to inform your membership engagement strategy, but not too much to deter your supporters from completing the form.

Every nonprofit is different, but chances are, these are the only key pieces of information you actually need to start building a member profile:

  • Contact details (name, mailing address, phone number, email address)
  • Payment information
  • Membership level
  • Chapter affiliation, for larger nonprofits

See how manageable the application form below looks? It fits on one page on a standard laptop screen! With fewer fields to fill out, applicants are much less likely to abandon the process:

Don't overload your membership application form with an intimidating number of fields.

Don’t worry if there are other bits of information you might want to have, such as employment information or the name of who referred the new member to your membership program. You can always follow up later on and gather this information, like when it comes time for membership renewal.

Takeaway: Don’t flood your membership application with too many fields.


Use the design of your membership application form to boost completion rates.

4. Optimize the design of your membership application form.

Now that you know which fields you need to include on your membership form, it’s time to get into the design.

There are a few best practices you should follow no matter how you’re distributing your form, whether that’s on paper or on your website:

  • Brand your application to your nonprofit.
  • Emphasize benefits of membership on the form itself.
  • Keep your form short, no more than one printed page.
  • List contact information for questions that arise.

For online membership application forms, you might want to consider other kinds of design elements. For instance, including a progress bar so supporters can see how far along they are encourages them to complete the application.

Also dedicate some time to mobile optimization. You want your members to be able to complete your form no matter how big or small their screen is.

First, ensure that your form is mobile-responsive — that is, that it will automatically resize itself when displayed on a smaller screen. This mobile view should increase the size of fonts, buttons, and input fields to make it easier to read and click with a finger instead of a cursor. You should also use as many drop-down menus as possible (e.g., state, country, membership level).

Splitting your application into multiple short pages instead of one long page, like in the example below, also helps keep mobile applicants moving through the process:

Design your membership application to optimize it for online and mobile applicants.

If you think you’ll need some outside help with this type of coding, reach out to a nonprofit IT consultant. It’s worth taking more time now to boost your membership program later!

Takeaway: Design your application with online and, especially, mobile views in mind.


Link your membership application to your membership software to make following up easy.

5. Follow up with those who complete the membership application.

Your relationship with your members begins with your membership form, but it doesn’t stop there! You have to show your members that you appreciate their commitment and that your nonprofit is up to the task of managing their membership well.

An integrated membership application form sets your nonprofit up for success from the moment new members hit “submit” by:

  • Sending automatic welcome emails. The right software can pull contact information from the application form and populate the email with your new member’s name and membership level.
  • Populating a member profile. Especially if you provide a member directory and public milestone badges to your members, you should automatically set up a member profile for your new member and send them a link to begin personalizing it.
  • Streamlining payment processing. If you wait to process membership fees, you’ll appear unprofessional to your new members. Link your application form to your chosen payment processing solution to begin the process automatically.

The most effective (and popular!) of these strategies is a welcome email, like the one below:

Follow up by sending a welcome email to individuals who complete your membership application form.

While your membership application form itself can’t send emails or process payments, you can integrate your application form with other features through the right software solution.

Takeaway: Make sure to follow up with your new members right away.


With these membership application form strategies under your belt, you’re ready to overhaul your application and boost participation in your program! Don’t forget to download our free membership application samples below.

For more on membership, check out these additional resources on the topic:

  • Best Membership and Association Management Software. A great membership application is only the beginning of a great membership program’s operations. Make sure you support your program with the best membership and association management software!
  • Doubleknot’s Membership Renewal Letters Guide. Now that you’ve worked on recruitment with your membership application form, it’s time to devote attention to retention with your membership renewal letters. Check out this ultimate guide from Doubleknot for strategies and samples of the perfect membership renewal letter!
  • Doubleknot’s Member Engagement Guide. The team at Doubleknot can help keep your members in your program in more ways than one. Read up on top member engagement strategies with this essential guide for visitor-serving nonprofits like museums, zoos, and science centers!
  • Fundly’s Ways to Enhance Your Membership Renewal Letter. Can’t get enough about membership renewal letters? Head on over to Fundly for examples and tips to help you craft the most effective renewal letter for your membership-based nonprofit.


MobileCause Matching Gift Integration with Double the Donation

Does your nonprofit use MobileCause for your online donation forms? Are you looking to incorporate matching gift information into both your MobileCause donation pages as well as across your organization’s broader fundraising?

If so then this guide is for you.

Double the Donation’s Relationship with MobileCause:

MobileCause is a popular provider of donation forms and fundraising tools for nonprofits.

Double the Donation is the leading provider of employee matching gift data and tools to nonprofits.

This guide was put together to help organizations who use MobileCause’s donation forms incorporate Double the Donation’s employee matching gift plugin into their fundraising pages and into their primary websites.

Please note that MobileCause and Double the Donation are two separate companies.

Steps to Integrate Double the Donation’s Matching Gift Search Tool with MobileCause:

At risk of stating the obvious, the below steps and screenshots are applicable to organizations which already have an account with Double the Donation (Premium Plan) and MobileCause.

If you don’t have an account with Double the Donation you can learn more about our service or view our annual service fees and start a risk-free trial.

In terms of integrating Double the Donation’s matching gift search tools into your nonprofit’s fundraising strategy there are two primary options.

  1. In the Donation Process (Use MobileCause’s system)
  2. Across Your Other Fundraising Channels (Use your other systems)

Let’s start by looking at how to incorporate Double the Donation’s plugin into MobileCause’s donation forms.

Step #1: Log into your organization’s MobileCause account. Then select “Weblink” under the “App Links” drop down.

MobileCause Integration - Select Website Donation Forms

 

Step #2: Add a Custom Section to your website donation form

MobileCause Matching Gift Integration - Add Custom Section

 

Step #3: Name the Custom Section “Matching Gifts” and position it after the contact information.

MobileCause Matching Gift Integration | Name and Position Custom Section

 

 

Step #4: Navigate to the Matching Gift Section and enter a Section Heading. We recommend “Matching Gifts | Access Forms, Guidelines, and Instructions”.

MobileCause Integration - Enter a Matching Gift Section Heading

 

Step #5: Create a Custom Message field.

MobileCause Matching Gift Integration | Add Custom Message Field

 

Step #6: Add a Field Name of “Matching Gifts” and click on the <> to switch to the source code mode.

MobileCause Matching Gift Integration | Switch to Source Code Editor

 

Step #7: Copy/paste the Double the Donation iframe code from your Double the Donation account management portal into the text box. Please note, you need to use the iframe code option not the standard HTML / Javascript embed option.

MobileCause Matching Gift Integration | Add Double the Donation IFrame Code

We recommend you set the height to be 250. You’ll need to change height=”500″ to height=”250″.

Notes:

  • Access your nonprofit’s matching gift iFrame code by logging into your Double the Donation account at https://doublethedonation.com/members/.
  • Copy the iFrame code from your Double the Donation account and paste it into the weblink receipt page.
  • The code will look similar to the following:
    <iframe src=“https://doublethedonation.com/api/iframe/your-double-the-donation-key” width=“100%” height=“250”></iframe>
    (Don’t forget to that you need to copy the iframe code from your Double the Donation account)

 

Step #8: Save everything and preview your MobileCause donation form.

And voila!

Your donation form now incorporates Double the Donation’s searchable matching gift database so donors can easily access company specific matching gift forms, guidelines, and instructions.

MobileCause Donation Form with Double the Donation Matching Gift Plugin

 

 

Please note: We recommend going through the donation process once on your website to confirm everything is working correctly.

 

Next let’s look at how to incorporate Double the Donation’s matching gift plugin across your broader fundraising

Step #1: Create a dedicated matching gift page on your main website.

Create a dedicated matching gift page on your own website

This is all done by using Double the Donation’s primary matching gift plugin which can be found in your organization’s Double the Donation account management pages. You’ll want to use the following steps:

  1. Log into your Double the Donation account
  2. Access the embed code
  3. Copy the embed code to the dedicated matching gift page on your own site
  4. Our searchable plugin will automatically load

Add Our Matching Gift Search Directly to Your Own Website

Step #2: Direct donors to your dedicated matching gift page across your broader fundraising efforts.

Create a dedicated matching gift page on your own website

This includes in locations such as:

For our complete marketing toolkit which includes suggested marketing locations, downloadable graphics, sample wording, and examples visit https://doublethedonation.com/marketing-matching-gifts/.

Have Questions?

Use one of the following ways to learn more about Double the Donation’s service:

Boost your year-end giving results with this helpful infographic.

Top Secrets to Year-End Giving Success [Infographic]

The end of the year is a crucial time for nonprofits. After all, over 25% of total charitable giving takes place between Thanksgiving and New Year’s.

If you’re not sure how to kick your fundraising strategy into high gear this holiday season, we’ve got the tips you need! Just check out MobileCause’s fact-packed year-end giving infographic below to learn everything you need to know.

Find out the secrets to year-end fundraising success with this infographic from Mobilecause.

These top nonprofit technology consulting firms can help your organization use software in a more strategic way.

Top 6 Nonprofit Technology Consulting Firms — Reviewed!

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Ready to work with a nonprofit technology consultant? Download our free guide to streamline the process!

For nonprofits of all sizes, technology is crucial. Especially as your organization grows in scale, you’ll need to find software solutions to help you manage donor information, market your campaigns, and track fundraising data. And those are just the basics!

To fully capitalize on your technology, however, you’ll need a smart captain at the helm to guide your efforts and work with you to develop custom solutions that align with your goals and needs.

The answer? A nonprofit technology consultant, of course!

In this post, we’ll introduce you to our favorite nonprofit consultants who specialize in all things technology:

  1. DNL OmniMedia
  2. Whole Whale
  3. Heller Consulting
  4. Idealist Consulting
  5. KELL Partners
  6. Apparo

After checking out our favorite firms, you should be ready to take the first step in finding a trusted technology partner to help you get more from your software solutions.

DNL OmniMedia is our top pick for nonprofit technology consulting.

1. DNL OmniMedia — Our Top Choice for Nonprofit Technology Consulting

Consulting Firm OverviewDNL OmniMedia provides nonprofit technology consulting services including web development, Blackbaud and Salesforce solutions, and more.

A trusted Blackbaud partner and Salesforce solution provider, DNL OmniMedia understands nonprofit software—but more importantly, they understand nonprofits!

With Team DNL on your side, you’ll be able to develop a smarter nonprofit strategy that builds on the use of powerful technology.

Not only can DNL OmniMedia assess your needs and goals, but they’ll also develop software solutions that can bring your vision to life. Through custom web development and design, software configurations, and more, DNL can guide your nonprofit to more strategic fundraising and stewardship in no time.

Nonprofit Technology Services

DNL OmniMedia offers nonprofit-exclusive services including:

  • Technical strategy
  • Software implementation and customization
  • Website development
  • Data migration and clean-up

In addition to their services, DNL also offers custom nonprofit products to expand your Blackbaud Luminate system, including peer-to-peer fundraising and advocacy add-ons.

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

Team DNL has worked with many different types of nonprofits tackling a variety of nonprofit technology challenges.

From boosting fundraising through custom Blackbaud TeamRaiser donation forms for the North Shore Animal League to designing a one-of-a-kind nonprofit website for the Interlochen Center for the Arts, DNL has proven their expertise for a number of clients.

Check out DNL OmniMedia's nonprofit technology consulting services and products!


Check out these top nonprofit technology consulting firms to find one for your organization.

2. Whole Whale

Consulting Firm OverviewWhole Whale is a nonprofit technology consulting firm specializing in digital strategy.

Whole Whale is a digital agency dedicated to helping nonprofits enhance their strategic use of technology. They’ll help your organization learn valuable skills and implement best practices so that you don’t need to rely on a consultant or third-party administrator. 

To achieve that goal, Whole Whale provides one-on-one consulting services for clients with like-minded missions. On top of their long-term projects, this firm also offers online training courses through Whole Whale University in areas such as social media, Google AdWords, and more.

Nonprofit Technology Services

Whole Whale takes a holistic approach to digital strategy, with key services that include:

  • Google AdWords grants management
  • Google Analytics
  • Web design and development
  • Content marketing

Each Whole Whale project is customized based on nonprofit needs, so you won’t have to worry about getting a canned approach.

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

Notably, Whole Whale worked with the Malala Fund to improve the nonprofit’s use of Google Analytics for tracking user actions on their site. Following their engagement, the Malala Fund was able to successfully implement Google Analytics on their own, without any ongoing support from a consultant.

Get started with Whole Whale, a nonprofit technology consulting firm, today!


3. Heller Consulting

Consulting Firm OverviewHeller Consulting offers nonprofit technology consulting services for organizations of all sizes and missions.

Since 1996, Heller Consulting has worked exclusively with nonprofits to develop effective strategies in data management, communications, fundraising, and other vital areas.

In particular, the Heller consultants are passionate about working with nonprofits to get more from their CRM systems. With their services, your organization can outline a clear vision for your constituent relationship management, implement and customize your technology, and learn best practices for your software.

Nonprofit Technology Services

Heller Consulting works primarily with nonprofits and higher education institutes, offering a variety of technology services such as: 

  • CRM strategy and design
  • CRM implementation
  • Online fundraising strategy
  • Google Analytics

In addition, Heller Consulting maintains an active blog on their website to help organizations continue gaining and sharing knowledge about nonprofit technology.

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

Heller Consulting has worked with nonprofit clients in multiple sectors, including advocacy, healthcare, higher education, and social services. Some of their past engagements include the ASPCA, Make a Wish National Foundation, and the Lincoln Park Zoo.

You can check out their website for more information on recent projects and case studies detailing their work with specific software solutions, such as the Salesforce Community Cloud.

Learn more about the nonprofit technology consulting services offered by Heller Consulting.


4. Idealist Consulting

Consulting Firm Overview Idealist Consulting offers nonprofit technology consulting services as well as general digital consulting for all types of organizations.

With about 60% of their clients being nonprofits, Idealist Consulting specializes in Salesforce and marketing automation consulting. They can help you build out a custom Salesforce experience that works for your organization, with strategic app integrations and personalized configurations.

Idealist Consulting works with organizations to get more from the Salesforce system and raise funds and awareness for their cause. Their four-step consulting process always concludes with increased impact made possible through strategic technology implementation.

Nonprofit Technology Services

Idealist Consulting offers services that build on your existing technology and online presence through:

  • Salesforce CRM development
  • Email marketing automation
  • Online form optimization
  • Salesforce application integration

On top of all of that, Idealist can also work with you to build out a custom Salesforce app of your own!

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

Among their other nonprofit and for-profit clients, Idealist Consulting worked with The Banfield Foundation, an animal welfare organization, to move their data to the Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack for improved fundraising and donor data management.

By learning how to track small donations more effectively in Salesforce, The Banfield Foundation increased their online donations by over 300%! Idealist Consulting also developed custom fields within their CRM and helped them generate unique reports showing donor trends and demographics.

See if Idealist Consulting's nonprofit technology consulting approach is right for you.


5. KELL Partners

Consulting Firm Overview KELL Partners is a nonprofit technology consulting firm offering unique products and software solutions.

As a Salesforce Premium Partner, KELL Partners strives to remove the confusion from the nonprofit data management and fundraising experience.

With KELL, you’ll have access to a full suite of services specific to the Salesforce Nonprofit Success Pack. Their team of strategic consultants can analyze your data and current practices and develop a path forward that helps you achieve your goals, no matter how simple or complex they may be. 

Nonprofit Technology Services

KELL can lend their expertise to every phase of the nonprofit Salesforce experience, helping you with:

  • Data manipulation and migration
  • Systems integration
  • Application development
  • Web development

With their KELL360 plan, the KELL team can build out a system of must-have integrations to take your baseline CRM to a whole new level.

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

KELL Partners helped the New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity centralize the data they’d been storing across multiple fundraising and volunteer management systems using Salesforce. With a newly integrated system, the nonprofit was able to see fuller picture of their constituents and more effectively design engagement strategies for each supporter.

See more of the case study here!

Check out KELL Partners for your nonprofit technology consulting needs.


6. Apparo

Consulting Firm Overview Apparo offers volunteer nonprofit technology consulting services to empower local nonprofits in the Charlotte, North Carolina area.

Apparo seeks to “empower nonprofits through technology that enhances their missions.” They provide volunteer nonprofit technology consulting to organizations of all sizes and skill levels in the Charlotte, North Carolina, community. 

All of Apparo’s consulting services are individualized and unique to the organization. They’ll get to know your organization so they can most aptly pinpoint challenges and areas for improvement before working to push your mission forward.

Nonprofit Technology Services

Apparo’s consulting team offers a wide variety of free nonprofit services, including:

  • Basic Microsoft coaching
  • Nonprofit technology panels and forums
  • One-on-one technology assessments
  • Training groups

As a nonprofit themselves, Apparo is dedicated to helping philanthropic organizations within their community. Their volunteer consultants can help organizations with almost anything, from selecting the right software to learning the most up-to-date best practices in the nonprofit tech community.

Nonprofit Technology Portfolio

Apparo’s many success stories include the Carolina Raptor Center, a nonprofit working to rehabilitate and release injured birds. Prior to working with Apparo, the Center relied on paper tracking and Excel spreadsheets for all of their volunteer information, costing them time and data.

With Apparo, the Center was able implement more strategic software that reduced paperwork and increased their supporter engagement possibilities across the board.

Check out Apparo to see if their nonprofit technology consulting services can help your organization grow.


Once you find the right nonprofit technology consulting, implementing and using your software will be easier (and more effective) than ever before.

Check out these resources for more help with your nonprofit software:

  • More Nonprofit Consulting Firms. From fundraising consultants to IT consulting and more, this comprehensive page will introduce you to even more great nonprofit consultants with a variety of specialties. Check it out!
  • Best Technology Solutions for Nonprofits. A nonprofit technology consultant can help you take your software to the next level, but if you’re not sure what software solutions to get started with, this helpful post from DNL OmniMedia can guide you.
  • Top Blackbaud Partners. Looking for nonprofit technology consultants with Blackbaud expertise? Want to expand your Blackbaud products with integrations? @Pay’s got a list of solutions (and solution providers) for you.

 


7 Disaster Relief Fundraisers with Matching Gift Opportunities

7 Disaster-Relief Fundraisers Using Matching Gifts to Raise More Money

The past few months have seen some of the worst natural disasters in recent memory strike. Between the earthquakes in Mexico and the hurricanes in the Caribbean and southern parts of the United States, there are so many regions and people in need of help.

If you’re considering donating to a fundraising campaign that’s sending money to places such as Puerto Rico, Houston, Mexico City, and the Virgin Islands, you can actually take your gift one step further.

Currently, there are multiple active fundraising campaigns where you have a chance to get your gift matched. That’s right. You can donate to a campaign benefiting a region affected by a recent natural disaster and get that money doubled (and even tripled in some cases).

After doing a bit of research, we’ve identified seven disaster-relief campaigns with matching gift opportunities. Take a look, choose a campaign, donate, and get your gift matched!

  1. Greater Together for Disaster Relief
  2. The McShane Foundation – Hurricane Harvey Support
  3. Hurricane Relief for PacSun Associates
  4. Mexico Earthquake’s Relief Fund
  5. ACU Employee and Member Disaster Fund
  6. Index Fest (Houston) – Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund
  7. Hope for Houston

Let’s take a look at each campaign individually.

1. Greater Together for Disaster Relief

Philips Lighting Greater Together Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “Greater Together for Disaster Relief“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? This campaign wants to raise $40,000 to provide lighting solutions to those affected by the hurricanes in the Atlantic as well as the individuals impacted by Mexico City’s earthquake.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? All donations to the campaign will be matched. So, for every dollar you give, Philips Lighting will give another dollar.

2. The McShane Foundation – Hurricane Harvey Support

McShane Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “The McShane Foundation – Hurricane Harvey Support“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? This fundraiser is looking to help Houston rebuild after the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. They’re aiming to raise $50,000.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? The foundation has agreed to match contributions to the campaign to help increase the impact of their fundraiser.

3. Hurricane Relief for PacSun Associates

PacSun Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “Hurricane Relief for PacSun Associates“:

  • What’s the campaign goal? This is a direct donation account to help out PacSun associates impacted by the hurricanes. It’s goal is to raise $25,000.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? PacSun will match up to $25,000 total.

4. Mexico Earthquake’s Relief Fund

Mexico Earthquake Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “Mexico Earthquake’s Relief Fund“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? The campaign organizer wants to raise money to help the victims of the recent earthquakes in Mexico. The campaign’s current goal is $10,000, and the money is being donated to an NY-based nonprofit, Project Paz, which has been crucial in the relief effort in Mexico.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? Through Edrington Americas, this campaign is offering a double match to every donation. In other words, for every dollar donated, Edrington Americas will give two dollars!

5. ACU Employee and Member Disaster Fund

ACU Member and Employee Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “ACU Employee and Member Disaster Fund“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? This campaign was set up to help the employees and members of the Associated Credit Union of Texas. They’re aiming to raise $25,000.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? The ACU has pledged to match any donations received up to $25,000.

6. Index Fest (Houston) – Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund

Index Fest Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “Index Fest (Houston) – Hurricane Harvey“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? Index Fest wants to help Houston’s recovery effort and has created a fund that offers special incentives to patrons who donate to Harvey recovery efforts.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? Index Fest is going to match the total donations received up to $5,000.

7. Hope for Houston

Hope for Houston Disaster Relief Fundraiser with Matching Gifts

Here’s what you need to know about “Hope for Houston“:

  • What’s the campaign’s goal? The Texas-based bridal jewelry designer, the Sylvie Collection, is looking to raise $15,000 to aid in the Hurricane Harvey relief efforts.
  • What’s the matching gift opportunity? The Sylvie Collection will match all donations up to $15,000.


As you can see, there are many disaster-relief fundraisers out there right this minute that you can give to and get your gift matched.

Make a donation, and see your money go twice as far!

How to Raise Money and Support Victims of the California Wildfires

4 Ways You Can Raise Money and Support Victims of the California Wildfires

This post was last edited on 10.10.17 at 3:07 PM EST.

On Sunday night, fires ignited in Northern California in areas including Napa and Sonoma. According to CNN, these massive wildfires (in excess of a dozen) have already destroyed more than 1,500 homes and commercial buildings as well as covered approximately 120,000 acres and continue to consume even more in Napa wine country.

While the most immediate task for emergency crews is to help people evacuate residents, fire officials are working on a plan to end the wildfires despite the dry winds and lack of resources.

Because you’ve come to this article, you’ve likely heard this devastating news and want to show your support.

If you’re looking for a way to raise money, donate to, or volunteer to help victims in Northern California, we have 4 ways you can show your support:

  1. Launch your own crowdfunding campaign.
  2. Consider getting your donations matched.
  3. Encourage others to support causes on social media.
  4. Give to nonprofits that are supporting that community.

No matter how you decide to support the wildfire efforts in California, every amount donated counts! Get ready to learn how you can help.

If you want even more ways to raise money and support the California wildfire efforts, check out Fundly’s list of ideas.

1. Launch Your Own Crowdfunding Campaign

If you or someone you know is personally affected by the wildfires in California you might feel compelled to tell your story and start a crowdfunding campaign. Since the aftereffects can be extremely costly, raising money online is a great way to rally support in a short period of time.

Crowdfunding is a great tool to raise funds because campaigns can be set up in a matter of minutes and they’re inexpensive to create. 

If you’re still not convinced, look at these successful crowdfunding campaigns to see just how much you can raise.

Additionally, campaigns can easily be shared on social media, email, and via text message so that you can reach everyone in your network and encourage them to support your cause.

To get started, you’ll need to:

  • Choose a crowdfunding platform. The platform that you choose will play a huge role in the success of your campaign. Look for a platform that will let you keep the funds even if you don’t reach your goal or meet your deadline so you can donate every penny you raise. We recommend Fundly.
  • Set a goal. Having a goal is important as it will help you rally supporters and show donors how far you’ve come.
  • Write a compelling description and upload photos. If you or a loved one is personally impacted by the wildfires in California, don’t be afraid to tell your story. Even if you’re not directly impacted, use the description to show people why this cause matters.
  • Promote on social media. Last, but certainly not least, post your crowdfunding campaign on social media and send emails to your friends and family to encourage them to donate. The more you spread the word, the better chance you have of gaining donors and reaching your goal.

If you’re in a time crunch to look for the right crowdfunding platform, we have a list of our top recommended options.

We recommend Fundly because it’s a “keep-it-all” platform and has highly shareable pages. Sign up for a campaign by clicking here or the image below.

Head to the Fundly homepage and start your own crowdfunding campaign for wildfire relief.

Even if you can’t create your own campaign, consider donating to the many campaigns that are currently supporting the victims of the Northern California wildfires.

Here are two certified fundraisers for wildfire relief that you can give to right now.

1. California Fire Relief Fund — Double the Donation set up the California Fire Relief Fund on October 9 in response to the wildfires. This campaign promises to donate any funds raised to the fire departments combating these wildfires, as well as regional nonprofits that are serving the people affected by this great tragedy. Check out the campaign:

California Wildfire Relief Fund

2. Relief Efforts for Massive Sonoma County Fire — Launched by the Fundly Team, this crowdfunding campaign aims to help the victims of the wildfires in Santa Rosa, CA. It’s already gained quite a bit of traction. Check it out:

Relief Efforts for Massive Sonoma County Fire

2. Consider Getting Your Donations Matched

Whether you donate to a crowdfunding campaign or local nonprofit, don’t forget about matching gifts. Having your donation matched by your employer (if you’re eligible) will make your donation go much further in supporting the wildfire efforts in California.

Many companies will match your donations at a 1:1 ratio, which means that for every $1 you donate, the organization or crowdfunding campaign will get another $1 from your company.

Moreover, there are some companies that even match at higher ratios so that you raise additional funds for your organization.

Not sure if your corporation has a matching gift program? When you make a donation, look out for a matching gift search bar (either on the organization’s “Ways to Give” page or directly on the donation form), that will let you search for your corporation’s matching gift program.

Also, we’re making our matching gift search tool available to folks looking to get donations to the relief effort matched. Just type your company name into the search feature below:

By taking the initiative to have your donations matched, you’ll be able to raise even more funds for your organization with just a little extra effort on your part.

3. Encourage Others to Support Your Cause On Social Media

Spreading the word is an effective way to rally the support of others—and there is no better place to do this than on social media.

With so many followers on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, you’ll be able to reach even more people to encourage them to contribute.

No matter how much you donate, share your donation on your social media accounts to make others aware of the ways they can support the wildfire efforts in California.

Think about it this way: if you’re friends see that your invested and passionate about this cause, it might spark them to learn more and potentially donate as well. 

To craft the best social media posts:

  • Use images and video to draw people’s attention.
  • Link to the crowdfunding campaign or organization you donated to.
  • Share posts (like this one) to inspire your friends and family to get involved.

There are so many ways you can spread the word and encourage others to support those who will be impacted by the wildfires in California. For example, see how this campaign is being shared by donors on Twitter.

Sharing this wildfire relief campaign is bound to help it get the traction it needs.

With just a short tweet, this campaign supporter was able to spread the word about a fundraiser that’s working to help California stop the fire.

Find a campaign you can stand behind and give it a social share!

4. Give to Nonprofits That Support the Community

If you’re feeling the urge to help, but aren’t sure where to turn, look to the community-based nonprofits and organizations that are stepping up to the plate.

Nonprofits who are already cemented in key Northern Californian communities will know the best way to use funds and provide aid to those in need. Plus, you’ll be sending your support directly to the organizations—and people—who need it most.

Check out our list of organizations that can help the afflicted communities:

  • This emergency shelter information for Santa Rosa includes information about where volunteers are needed most. As the fire progresses, these shelters may need further supplies and donations.
  • The Red Cross is actively helping Northern California evacuees. See how you can help!
  • For families with animals, the Sonoma Humane Society is building a grassroots effort to find shelters that are open to pets.

Any of these organizations can help you send aid to the right places. After all, they’re already on the ground, helping those who need it!

For additional ideas we encourage you to check out this Fundly article which has even more ways you can donate to and support Northern California, Sonoma, and Napa Fire Relief and Recovery Efforts.

 


It can be difficult seeing what’s happening in Northern California and not knowing how you can contribute. Hopefully, these ideas have inspired you to take action, whether it’s through starting your own campaign or donating to a local charity.

5 Tips to Keep Your Giving Tuesday Momentum Going Year-Round

According to data reported by Blackbaud, Giving Tuesday 2017 has yielded at least a 28% increase in online giving over 2016 campaigns. In 2016, Giving Tuesday yielded over 168 million in donations. This figure does not include the amount of volunteer hours that were also provided to nonprofits due to the initiative.

Remember, a volunteer hour is estimated to be worth $24.00 so there is real value there.

Giving Tuesday offers nonprofits a unique opportunity to test online campaign messaging in front of a large-scale audience. How is your nonprofit using this data to optimize campaigns year-round? Is your nonprofit implementing the right strategies to keep your Giving Tuesday momentum going by reaching the right donor and volunteer prospects?

Here are a few tips to incorporate into your year-end giving strategy and year-round prospecting plan.

Keep Giving Tuesday Momentum Going by Creating Compelling Content

One of the biggest takeaways from Giving Tuesday is that compelling content drives donations and volunteer opportunity signups. Did you know that on average people view four pieces of content before deciding to take a specific action or not? How is your nonprofit captivating your target audience and enticing them to complete your call to action? A recent study conducted by the content marketing institute found that only 30% of nonprofits have a clear vision of content marketing success and how to achieve their content goals. The same study determined that only 25% of nonprofits have a documented content marketing strategy.

Even though many nonprofits do not have a clear process for content marketing many still see the value that content marketing creates. 65% of nonprofit professionals are creating more content than they were a year ago.

If your nonprofit wants to be successful in driving leads from your content marketing efforts a clear-cut plan is a must.

Here are a few tips that will help your organization create compelling content year-round:

  • Showcase your cause in a compelling and engaging way.
  • Share stories that demonstrate your organization’s impact.
  • Use your content as an opportunity to trigger urgency.
  • Use your content to appeal to your supporters on a personal level.
  • Make sure your content focuses on the end-goal (what do you want people to do?)
  • Incorporate actionable language into your nonprofit’s content.

Creating content that is compelling can help captivate your audience and drive prospects to support your cause.

Keep Giving Tuesday Momentum Going by Investing in Strategic Tools

There is a plethora of tools available that can help your organization create a process and strategically push your nonprofit forward. Fundraising tools and volunteer management can help to bridge the gap between your prospects and your organization and allow supporters to help market your cause.

Identifying and investing in the right tools can help your nonprofit increase engagement with supporters as well.

Did you know that the average first-year median donor retention rate in the nonprofit industry is only 29%?

Engagement with volunteers is also low. Believe it or not only 55% of nonprofits assess volunteer impact as a metric of success.

Here are a few ways fundraising and volunteer management tools can positively impact your organization:

  • Free up your staff’s time (time is money) to focus on other important aspects and growth.
  • Integrate with your nonprofit’s CRM system to provide more insights into prospect behavior.
  • Allow your organization to easily create actionable CTAs that can be incorporated into your content and collateral strategies.
  • Bridge communication gaps between prospective volunteer, donors, and your nonprofit.

Keep Giving Tuesday Momentum Going by Becoming Data Driven

Making decisions based on data is a must in 2017 and beyond. Organizations that make decisions based on data are on average 4% more productive and 6% more profitable than their counterparts.

Decision-making based on data can help your nonprofit avoid pitfalls, identify opportunities, and predict future trends.

Did you know that 44% of marketers have a data management platform and 33% plan on getting one in the near future? Marketers understand that data is the key to success and understanding your nonprofit’s prospects should affect all of your business decisions.

Here are a few ways to become data-driven in 2017:

  • Decisions need to be an integral part of your data collection process.
  • Manage reporting based on the data points that align with your organization’s goals.
  • Get support from upper management and your organization’s IT department.
  • Focus on data that will predict and optimize business outcomes.
  • Embed analytics into every action your nonprofit takes.

Keep Giving Tuesday Momentum Going by Leveraging Matching Gifts

Focusing on corporate philanthropy can help to increase your supporters and monthly fundraising commitments from prospects.

One of the best corporate philanthropy strategies is matching gifts. Did you know that over 18 million individuals work for companies with matching gift programs?

An estimated 2-3 billion dollars is donated through matching gift programs annually.

If your nonprofit is not promoting matching gifts there are a few steps you can take to take advantage of this corporate philanthropy strategy:

  • Fully understand the eligibility requirements for matching gift programs.
  • Identify a matching gift coordinator to focus on building corporate relationships.
  • Raise awareness in the community around matching gifts and the benefits.
  • Create dedicated matching gift pages as part of your fundraising strategy.
  • Easily allow donors to see if their company offers a matching gift program.

Takeaways

Giving Tuesday and the end of the year is a great time to build an audience around your fundraising campaigns and volunteer opportunities.

Nonprofits can keep the momentum going by creating compelling content, investing in strategic tools, making decisions based on data, and leveraging corporate philanthropy.

To learn more information on donor and volunteer management best practices download our report that provides insights from 200 nonprofits, including CRM utilization rates, donor management best practices, and tips for converting volunteers to donors here.

Author Bio

Eric Burger is the marketing communications manager for VolunteerHub, an organization that provides volunteer management solutions for nonprofits across the globe. Eric has worked in the B2B software industry for the past two years and has over five years of experience in digital marketing.

8 Ways to Raise Money for and Donate to Victims of the Mexico Earthquake

Updated 9:57 AM EST on Friday, September 22nd.

While reports come in about the earthquake that hit Mexico on Tuesday, the news keeps getting sadder and sadder. As of today, the death toll numbers 273 people and the rescue effort is still underway, meaning that number is likely to rise. Much of central Mexico has been turned to rubble, and this comes after the deadly earthquake that struck the southern coast of Mexico two weeks ago, killing upwards of 90 people.

Tuesday’s magnitude-7.1 earthquake struck Mexico City and its surrounding region including the states of Puebla, Mexico, and Morelos. The images and video footage from the region are absolutely devastating, and all evidence indicates that recovery from this natural disaster is going to take a long, long time.

It is hard to know what to do in times of such unthinkable tragedy. But if you’ve made it to this page, it is because you want to help the relief effort and are looking for some ways to get involved. Below, you’ll find a list to get you started.

8 Ways to Join the Relief Efforts for Victims of Mexico’s Earthquake

We’ll start with advice for organizing your own fundraiser.

1. Run your own fundraiser.

One of the most hands-on methods of fundraising for Mexican relief is running your own crowdfunding fundraiser. It sounds challenging but is actually relatively simple. Of course, seeing your campaign through will take true dedication, but helping the people of Mexico will be more than worth it.

Crowdfunding is an effective fundraising option for earthquake relief in particular, because it is quick, efficient, and global. You want to start your campaign (do so here) sooner rather than later, while the relief effort is still at the front of everyone’s minds. 

If you’re interested in launching your own crowdfunding campaign, here’s the rundown of how it will go:

  1. Choose a platform — We recommend Fundly because it is free and lets you create a visually compelling and highly shareable campaign in mere minutes.
  2. Establish your goal — Find a sweet spot between achievable and challenging. Donors need to feel like your goal is possible, but you also want to raise enough to provide for the people of Mexico.
  3. Set up your campaign — When you set up your campaign, you’ll be looking to include a few things: compelling copy, high-quality images, a descriptive title, and a verification of who you are.
  4. Promote often — Online fundraisers succeed and fail based on how their promotion goes. You have to generate an audience for your crowdfunding campaign.
  5. Collect your donations — When the campaign is over, it’ll be time to collect your donations and use them to fund the relief effort in Mexico.

We compared the top crowdfunding platforms and recommend Fundly for disaster-relief fundraisers! Click the image to start your campaign.Run a crowdfunding fundraiser to raise money for earthquake relief in Mexico.

Make sure you carefully select a recipient of the funds you raise, so look to local nonprofits or global organizations that are focused on disaster relief. In other words, trust the experts.

Next step: Click to start a campaign right now

Click to start a crowdfunding fundraising campaign to help the victims of the earthquake in Mexico with their relief effort.

2. Donate to a crowdfunding campaign.

Not everyone can run their own crowdfunding campaign, but the good news is, there are plenty of campaigns created each day that are worthy and in need of donations. So, if you support and appreciate the crowdfunding model but don’t have the time or ability to run your own fundraiser, you can donate to someone else’s campaign.

Head over to a crowdfunding website, like Fundly, and search the existing campaigns. You can either type your query into a search bar or browse through the platform’s categories. The picture below gives you a preview of what the disaster relief category looks like. Click the picture to be taken to the page and category shown.Check out the disaster relief category on Fundly's website for fundraising options for the earthquake.

Outside of looking through a crowdfunding website, you’ll want to visit your main social channels (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) and see if any of your immediate contacts are running a campaign. If so, review their campaign goals and details and decide if you’d like to contribute to their work.

With minimal digging, either through your own social channels or through a crowdfunding platform, you should be able to find a number of campaigns to peruse. 

Just be careful to make sure that any campaign you donate to is legitimate. It’s a sad fact, but there are scammers out there who take advantage of natural disasters like these. Most crowdfunding sites do an excellent job of scrubbing illegitimate campaigns from their platforms, but as a donor, you should also be vigilant about doing your own research.

Ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does the organizer have an existing online presence?
  • Is the organizer Facebook verified?
  • Is the campaign transparent about its goals?

Once you’ve properly vetted the campaign and organizer, all that’s left to do is make a donation and support the recovery effort.

For example, here’s a great campaign that was recently started to help the earthquake recovery effort. The campaign is even has a special offer where all donations are being matched, meaning double funding for the relief effort.Donate to this crowdfunding campaign for the relief effort in Mexico following the earthquake.

Next step: Visit a campaign and donate.

3. Join the rebuilding effort.

The earthquake in Mexico absolutely destroyed much of central Mexico’s buildings and infrastructure. Construction and rebuilding in the region is going to be a huge priority and part of the recovery effort.

Luckily, you can help out by supporting nonprofits that specifically focus on fulfilling such needs. For example, consider donating to, raising money for, or volunteering with Habitat for Humanity.

You can donate to Habitat for Humanity or any earthquake-related campaigns run by Habitat for Humanity and use your money to help kick-start the rebuilding process. To donate, head over to and explore this page:

Supporting the Habitat for Humanity Global Village program is a great way to help the earthquake relief effort.

By donating to Habitat for Humanity, you’ll join the over 76,000 donors who have helped the organization raise $14,074,690 for its global volunteering program so far.

For example, here’s a campaign for a Habitat for Humanity build that is set to go to Mexico next year (donate here), when the region is going to most certainly need still need rehabilitation assistance:

Check out how you can help the rebuilding process in Mexico.

Next step: Donate to Habitat for Humanity’s rebuilding effort.

4. Get your gifts matched.

If you work for a company that has a matching gift program, that essentially means you can make your donation go twice as far.

Here’s the definition of matching gifts, for those who don’t know (learn more here):

“Employee matching gifts are donations a company makes to match its employees’ charitable contributions. Employee matching gifts are typically at a dollar-for-dollar rate but some companies go even further by tripling or quadrupling their employees’ donations.”

At Double the Donation, we build and maintain a database of companies that match donations along with the forms, guidelines, and steps you should take to submit your match. Across our database, 15-19 million individuals work for companies with matching gift programs.

And for relief for recent disasters (Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Imra, Hurricane Maria, and the two earthquakes in Mexico) we’re making our database available for FREE.

You can use our matching gift tool right now. In the search bar below, type in your employer (ex. Home Depot, Verizon, Microsoft, etc.) to see if your company offers a matching gift program and to access forms, guidelines, and instructions.

Or if you want to view a list of the top matching gift companies click here. It’s all really that simple, and by filling out a little bit of paperwork, you could be doubly helping the people of Mexico.

Next step: Search for matching gift companies with the above search tool. Then Link to this page (https://doublethedonation.com/blog/2017/09/raise-money-donate-to-victims-mexico-earthquake/) from your website or social media to share this matching gift information with other supporters.

Click to start a crowdfunding fundraising campaign to help the victims of the earthquake in Mexico with their relief effort.

5. Donate to a disaster-relief nonprofit.

When in doubt, trust the experts. In other words, if you don’t know where to send your money, look to large and established nonprofits that already have folks on the ground and plans in place to aid the relief effort.

Primarily, you’ll be donating funds more than anything. While Mexico will surely be in need of items like non-perishable food and clothing, it’s often best to send money first that can than be allocated as needed. You certainly don’t want to end up sending goods that clutter airports and shelters and won’t be put to good use.

Nonprofits to consider include:

For example, Project Paz is working in conjunction with the El Paso Community Foundation to help raise money for earthquake relief in central Mexico.

Project Paz is just one example of a nonprofit earthquake relief effort you can contribute to.

At the end of the day, consider regional, national, and global organizations, and pick the program and relief effort that you feel most passionately about. A range of help is not only needed, it is necessary.

Next step: Review your options for donating and pick a nonprofit to support.

6. Share and promote fundraisers you support.

One of the quickest ways to help out a cause you care about, any time, is to share and promote the fundraising effort. For example, if you are a big proponent of your local homeless shelter and they’re running a campaign, you can help by sharing that campaign with your friends, family, and broader social media network.

The same principle applies to sharing and promoting fundraisers for the disaster-relief work being done in Mexico. So, visit your favorite campaign and share it.

Here’s an excellent example from Raul Gonzalez, who is the organizer of a crowdfunding campaign that is raising money (and doubling donations) for relief in Mexico following the earthquake.

Share and promote fundraisers that are for the relief effort for after the earthquakes in Mexico.

It might seem simple, but just a few clicks and short message can go a long way toward increasing how much money a fundraiser brings in and is able to put toward the cause. In fact, the average campaign share raises $97!

Next step: Find a crowdfunding campaign and share it to help the victim of Mexico’s earthquake.

Click to start a crowdfunding fundraising campaign to help the victims of the earthquake in Mexico with their relief effort.

7. Contribute to the United Way’s Fondo de Emergenicas.

The United Way is one of the most recognizable nonprofit names in the world. The United Way focuses on building strong, sustainable communities through three key areas of impact: education, income, and health.

The United Way has a branch in Mexico and has created an emergency relief fund dedicated solely to the recovery effort from the numerous disasters that have occurred in the country over the past month or so.

They currently have a 3-stage intervention plan that the funds will go towards:

  1. Advance team — A small, experienced group of people deployed to assess what each community’s most urgent needs are.
  2. Brigade — A larger group of volunteers who bring necessary support as specified by the advance team.
  3. Reconstruction — Longer term work to rehabilitate buildings and homes.

The United Way of Mexico has a disaster relief fund to help with the earthquake recovery effort.

Contributing is as easy as visiting their website. They even have an easy translate option for non-Spanish speakers.

Next step: Visit the United Way’s website and contribute to the fund

8. Support Direct Relief’s efforts.

For those who don’t know, Direct Relief is a nonprofit that serves all 50 states, as well as 80 other countries, including Mexico.

Their mission is simple: “Improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty and emergencies.”

Due to their emergency relief focus, they’re extremely well-equipped to help the people of Mexico recover from the devastating earthquake.

According to their website, “Direct Relief is coordinating with Mexico-based companies and national emergency response organizations to get desperately needed medicine to those impacted by the earthquake.”

Additionally, “Direct Relief has Donataria Autorizada status from the Mexican government, allowing companies in Mexico to receive tax benefits for donations to the organization.”

On top of accepting donations and doing vital work in the damaged region, their site also features frequent updates and news stories, to keep donors and supporters fully informed (shown below).

Direct Relief is not only providing earthquake recovery help, it also have a great news resource on its site.

As you can see, you can visit their site and not only donate, but read first-hand accounts about what is occurring on the ground in Mexico.

Next step: Check out Direct Relief’s website and explore how you can provide support.


There are the eight ideas. So hop to it. Start helping and spread the word about how everyone can support the relief effort. Mexico needs us, and we need to step up for them in this time of tragedy.

Raise money for Hurricane Irma and Hurricane Maria with crowdfunding or donate to a campaign.

 

8 Storytelling Tools to Boost Donation

Human beings like stories. We are exposed to them from the moment we are born and learn how to connect with and learn from others through storytelling. Although everyone is not a natural born storyteller, everyone does have the ability to tell a good story if given the right tools.

Developing storytelling skills is essential for nonprofit fundraisers because the key is nothing more than telling a great story to your donors. People are more likely to convert from visitors to donors when there is a narrative they can follow and connect with. Here is a list of 8 tips we have compiled to get you started on your storytelling journey.

1. Hands on experience

Write what you know. This is one of the first pieces of advice any young writer is give and, it still applies to storytelling for nonprofits. You can’t tell an authentic story if you have never experienced some aspect of it. I’m talking to you, development team, it’s time to get involved.

There is a natural divide that exists between program and development staff at any nonprofit. You view each other with distrust, always thinking the other is doing less. But as a member of the development team you need access to the best stories which means a good working relationship with your program staff. Make it clear that you value the work that they do. Set up bi-weekly or monthly meetings to share stories about your work. This will give your team access to stories which appeal to donors and humanize the development team to program staff.

Attend volunteer events. Your development team should be required to attend a certain number of volunteer events each year. This allows you to experience first-hand what your organization does and get you some great stories.

2. Write with your ideal donor in mind

One of the first rules of storytelling is to know your audience. While you are creating content for many people, that content is being consumed individually. For your readers, your content isn’t generated for the masses, it’s created for them.

Use donor surveys and craft donor personas. Your donor personas represent those who give to your cause. A donor persona includes job title, average age, gender, communication preference and other important information that tells you who your donors are. Once you know who your donors are, write to them.

3. Impart your vision

When you are storytelling for your nonprofit your goal should never be “to raise money.” It’s not specific enough and doesn’t give you a story to tell.

Consider instead what the money you are looking to raise will be used for. Is it a specific project? Tell the story of that project and what impact it will have on lives.

If you need money for basic operational or administrative costs tell the story of what would happen if your organization wasn’t able to do the amazing work it does. For example, if your organization didn’t exist- would lives be affected? How many? In what way? Craft a story around this idea with donors as the heroes, the ones who make your work possible.

4. Present conflict and make your donors part of the resolution

If you read your story and realize there is no conflict, then it’s not a story; it’s a pitch. This is essential because the conflict in your story is the reason your organization exists. If your organization builds wells in rural Zambia when individuals already have access to clean drinking water, then your organization exists for no reason.

When crafting your story and thinking about your central conflict consider the following questions:

How does your organization address issues in your community?

What do you need to address this problem?
Funding.

How much funding?

What exactly will the money do?

Who provides the money?
Donors.

Who is the hero of the story?
Donors.

Asking these questions will help you story tell in a way that appeals to your donors.

5. Create a sense of urgency

Your story should be time sensitive. You should make donors feel that there is only a limited amount of time to give and to help. Adding a deadline is one of the easiest ways to create that sense of urgency.

International Rescue Committee does an incredible job creating a sense of urgency in their story about the Rohingya population from the Rakhine state of Myanmar. This population is facing persistent violence in Myanmar with hundreds of thousands of refugees in need of basic services.

6. Use a variety of methods and channels

Sometimes we get locked into the idea that stories can only be written. But in many cultures, storytelling is still a mostly oral tradition and there are many different ways to express them.

Remember the section on “knowing your donors above”? Well, not all donors are going to want to read your stories. Some, especially younger donors, want to see videos, pictures, infographics.

Tell the same story in different ways and see if one method yields different results. Stay creative and agile because storytelling is a fluid art.

The example above from malala.org shares Malala’s story in an interactive timeline,which integrates many different storytelling mediums from image to video to text. It is dynamic and easy to follow.

7. Inspire others to share their stories

Most people are more likely to connect with a story when it is autobiographical. This may not be applicable if your organization doesn’t work with people, but if it does, get the people you serve to tell their own stories. Interviewing people about their own experiences creates a more authentic story and allows your donors to connect to what you do on a more emotional level.

If you don’t work with individuals get donors to tell their stories. People like hearing from others who have given before because it legitimizes giving and provides them with realistic expectations about where their money will go and how to give.

8. Litmus test your story

You want to test your story before you send it out to the world. The best advice I have heard on this topic is to litmus test your story at the dinner table. If it doesn’t perform well there, then it isn’t good enough.

This also tells you how simple your story should be. How much do you hate it when someone monopolizes the conversation at the dinner table with a story that takes 15 minutes but could have been told in 5? Don’t be that person. You will bore and alienate your donors.

Conclusion

Great fundraising is great storytelling. Every great nonprofit fundraiser will tell you the same thing. If you want to boost donations, then further developing your storytelling skills is the best way to make it happen.

Just remember, you tell stories everyday and you have been telling them since you had the ability to speak.

If you want to read even more on the subject The Storytelling Nonprofit is a great place to start. Happy storytelling!

Author Bio

Emma Wolfe is the Communications and Partnerships Manager at Elevation, a full-service nonprofit web design agency. Emma has been involved in the nonprofit world for years working at multiple NGOs located both in the United States and abroad. Her experience ranges from refugee occupation counseling to empowerment programs for youth in West Africa. When she isn’t traveling Emma loves doing yoga and trying new food.