If you’re starting a capital campaign, then you know how much work and effort goes into planning a fundraiser of this magnitude. You want all your hard work to result in a successful outcome: reaching your goal.
For that to happen, you need to have the right capital campaign marketing plan in place, which should include strategies to attract tech-savvy donors as well as traditional supporters.
We’ve compiled a list of five tech-savvy marketing strategies to help you raise more.
Here’s is what we’ll cover:
- Build a capital campaign website
- Make your case for support interactive
- Create a peer-to-peer campaign
- Promote your campaign on social media
- Use text messages to market your campaign
Strategy #1: Build a capital campaign website
Before you launch your capital campaign, the first thing you should do is create a website dedicated to your capital campaign.
It’s important to have a place where your donors can gain information just about your campaign.
If you’re still not sold on the idea of a capital campaign website, here are a few more reasons why you should consider creating a separate site:
- Unlike most fundraisers, a capital campaign can last months (if not years!), and the funds you raise will go toward a very specific outcome. Setting your campaign apart helps supporters understand how it’s different from your annual fund.
- A lot of information goes into explaining your capital campaign, from the projected outcome to your project’s benefits. Giving your capital campaign it’s own website allows you to present all this information in a central location that is easy for the donor to find.
- Your website can also be a place to recognize donors who make significant contributions and update supporters on the progress of the project even after the campaign is over.
The most successful capital campaign websites are the ones that combine video, images, and text to convey their message.
For instance, the Boston Children’s Hospital built a fantastic website for their capital campaign to renew their facilities. Not only does their capital campaign website have a unique slogan — “dream, dare, deliver” — but it also has a distinct brand.
In addition to past success stories of children the hospital has helped, they’ve included images and video for what the proposed renovations will look like as well as a section highlighting the many ways you can support their campaign.
Final thought: A website is a great way to market to your capital campaign because it will not only make it easier for potential donors to find your campaign, but it will also provide them with detailed information.
Strategy #2: Make your case for support interactive
One of the crucial steps to planning your capital campaign is creating a case for support.
This document houses in-depth information about your campaign, including everything from the need your project will fulfill to an explanation of how the funds will be used.
Its purpose is to answer any questions donors might have about your campaign and persuade them to contribute.
Generally, this document is printed in a pamphlet — or condensed into a brochure — and sent to donors via direct mail.
Of course, you can send your case using traditional methods, but why not take it online?
We’re not just talking about creating a PDF version that can be downloaded off your capital campaign’s website (though that’s an acceptable way to market your campaign). Donors are more likely to stick around and discover more about your campaign if you make the experience engaging.
Transform your case for support into an interactive page on your website, a video, or an infographic (or all three!). Creating your case for support in a different, unique format makes it more shareable.
With an online version of your case for support, you can share the details about your campaign:
- On social media
- Through text messages
- In emails and digital newsletters
Final thought: When you create an engaging case for support online, you’ll not only have more opportunities to share your project, but donors will also be more likely to read the information you share.
Strategy #3: Create a peer-to-peer campaign
Hosting a peer-to-peer fundraiser is not only a great way to raise funds for you capital campaign, but it can also serve as a way to market your campaign and gain new supporters.
Essentially, peer-to-peer fundraising is when your existing supporters raise funds on your behalf by asking their friends and family members to contribute.
As you can see with this peer-to-peer campaign page, The Big Brothers and Sisters of Northern New Jersey has included:
- A fundraising thermometer to display their goal.
- Social sharing features to help spread the word about their campaign.
- A description explaining the purpose of the campaign.
The great part about peer-to-peer fundraising is that you can leverage your donors’ connections. It’s difficult trying to encourage someone to contribute, especially if they don’t already have a relationship with your cause.
When your supporters share their passion for your nonprofit, it will carry much more weight with their friends and family members.
With that said, you still have a part to play in a peer-to-peer campaign. Not only do you need to recruit fundraisers for your campaign, you also need to steward a relationship with your new donors.
Since most of your donors will make a contribution more so to support their loved one, you need to connect with them to acknowledge their gift and provide more information about your mission.
To help develop a relationship with the first-time donors you gain from your peer-to-peer fundraiser, you can:
- Send them a welcome packet that provides more detail about your nonprofit’s history and mission.
- Encourage them to attend any events related to your capital campaign.
- Suggest other ways they can get involved (like volunteering or participating in the next peer-to-peer campaign).
- Send them stories about the people, places, or communities you serve.
Final thought: A peer-to-peer campaign is a great way to leverage your supporters’ connections and reach out to new donors.
Strategy #4: Promote your campaign on social media
You’re already aware of how powerful social media can be at promoting your capital campaign or any campaign, for that matter.
Marketing your campaign is about more than just posting or tweeting links to your website and donation page. It’s about creating content that adds value and educates prospective donors about your project.
The more people that know about your campaign and how it will positively affect them and their community, the more likely they will want to support your cause and share your mission with their peers.
While you may already be using Facebook and Twitter to promote your campaign, it’s important to branch out to other platforms and get creative with your communications.
Let’s look at a few ways you can promote your campaign using other social media platforms:
- Pinterest: You can create boards with images of what your proposed project will look like as well as images of the updates once you’ve reached your goal and started your project.
- Snapchat: If you’re planning any events during your capital campaign, you can share photos and small clips during your events.
- Instagram: Create a hashtag (which you can use on Facebook and Twitter, too!) to use when you share updates and images to your followers, and encourage donors to post images and videos of the events they attend.
Whichever platforms you decide to use, it’s important to not only put content out, but also to encourage donors to interact. Connecting with donors can be as simple as thanking them for their contribution when they it share it on social media.
Final thought: Using social media is a tried-and-true way to market your capital campaign. However, if you want to make an impact, you need to try new and creative strategies when reaching out to your donors.
Strategy #5: Use text messages to market your campaign
Since capital campaigns can last years, you need to maintain momentum to keep people interested in your campaign.
With that said, text messaging is a popular way for organizations to interact with donors because it’s an immediate means of communicating and the channel that donors check most often.
Sending text messages is not only a way to engage with supporters, but it’s also a way to accept donations.
Above is an example of how a donor can easily (and quickly!) send you a contribution via text message.
If you want to get started with text-to-give, you need to find a software provider who will set up your number. That way, you can start receiving donations via text message and update your supporters on your campaign’s progress.
Aside from donations, your organization can send information to donors to keep them informed (and hopefully encourage them to contribute!).
Not sure what to text your donors?
You can always send:
- Videos sharing your story and what your project hopes to achieve.
- Reminders of upcoming events and other ways donors can support your campaign.
- Links to your online donation page with instructions on how to text-to-give if you accept donations through text message (which you should!).
Updating donors shouldn’t just occur when you’re trying to reach your goal; it should happen even after the campaign is over. Donors want to know how their contributions are being used.
Final thought: Communicating through text messages can be an ideal way to interact with donors because it’s quick and your messages won’t get lost in a sea of other correspondence (like their email inbox!).
Capital campaigns are huge endeavors and thus require a solid marketing marketing plan in order to be successful.
Along with these tech-savvy marketing tips, you might need additional assistance in the form of a capital campaign consultant to help you market your campaign.