Digital Fundraising CFNI recording

1 Mar 2021 Sandra Bailie    Last updated: 26 May 2021

Digital fundraising graphic

This webinar on Digital Fundraising was part of the CFNI Accelerator programme and delivered by professional fundraisers: Nadine Campbell, Matthew Allen and Rosie Forsythe.

Nadine Campbell

Nadine gave an overview of the digital fundraising landscape highlighting the fact that 80% of donations were made digitally according to the Global Trends Survey and text to donate proved popular in 2020. She described the range of online platforms to use for fundraising with lots of useful links.

Nadine shared with us about The Big Give Campaign that Age NI ran in December 2020, and raised an amazing £14.6K in 7 days. Age NI applied to be part of the Big Give Christmas Appeal in June and ran a very organised campaign with focus on donors and communications such as social media and e-comms. Nadine ended on a high encouraging us that the future is bright with new opportunities and people continuing to donate. She reminded us of the need for good practice and compliance and pointed to the Fundraising Regulator for further information and guidance. Nadine ended with giving us lots of very useful resources (available below) and links and said –

“To have success you need to remember the 3 Vs and remain Virtual, Visible and Versatile.”

Rosie Forsythe, Cancer Focus,

Rosie started by giving a summary of the work that Cancer Focus does emphasising that the people living with cancer and their families were at the heart of everything they do. She the described the impact that Covid had had on them -on their patients and how they deliver their services as well as on their fundraising. They had completely reviewed their fundraising and treated it as if they were a new start up business, trying to see it as an opportunity. The most important thing was to continue to address the issues that are key to their service users and consider how to move everything online. She said –

“The power of digital has been there all along. This has pushed us outside our comfort zones and challenged us in many ways”.

Rosie highlighted that the physical activity events had been the most popular for them and that they were using a variety of online platforms such as Just Giving to ask for donations. They have run virtual campaigns, fundraising at work, quizzes, virtual marathon and giving in celebration such as birthdays, anniversaries and weddings during lockdown. Some advice to:

  • Plan – research the idea, move quickly, know your audience, have a clear ask
  • Promote – use social media, use partners such as businesses or celebrities, monitor what works
  • Prepare – materials, support

Matthew Allen, Concern Worldwide

Matthew Allen from Concern Worldwide gave an overview of the work and impact of Concern, as well as looking at the shifting landscape towards digital fundraising. He then detailed an external study that showed an increase in online and digital activities due to Covid-19 such as 43% of people spending longer using social media. He drew our attention to the fact that for young people, there is a shift towards ‘passion for a cause’ over ‘charity loyalty’ and that they want to be part of a movement and be active. Matt then described their digital fundraising campaign, The Ration Challenge that raised £1.8 million in 2020, explaining how it helped raise awareness and empathy as well as money. 

You need to create a community and a movement that people can belong to and be part of. Make it as easy for people as possible to be involved in what you are doing and clearly demonstrate impact. Spend time determine your target audience.

Some tips:

  • Meet the public where they are, research your audience and what they are using and looking at.
  • Test what you are doing, analyse if your communication is working and use different techniques and images.
  • Use the wealth of data that is available to you when fundraising digitally to improve what we do. (for example Google Analytics)
  • Look after your donors - Donor stewardship is key: make sure you follow up with donors and a key fundraising tip is create milestones and incentivisation.
  • Gift Aid is also a great way of increasing income.
  • Make it as easy as possible for people to get involved. 
  • “Raisely” is a fantastic fundraising platform that allows for excellent customisation to meet your brand guidelines. More information can be found here.

Watch the webinar

Further Resources

sandra.bailie@nicva.org's picture
by Sandra Bailie

Head of Organisational Development

[email protected]

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