This post was originally published at joangarry.com.
After 17 years of helping nonprofits (and other do-gooders) raise more money online, thankfully, the quality and sophistication of nonprofit websites, social media, email marketing, and so on have improved over the years. By now, the basic playbook used by most nonprofits for online donations is pretty well understood:
- A donation page with pre-set options like “$25, $50, $100, Other” and sometimes the ability to handle recurring donations.
- An email newsletter that occasionally — or sometimes obnoxiously frequently — solicits.
- A big “DONATE” button on every page.
- A blog designed to provoke an emotional response that can easily be shared on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks.
Many nonprofits also increasingly understand the impact of design on donations. First impressions matter a lot… if you walk into a dirty restaurant, would you want to eat there?
So now that they have the basics down, what can a nonprofit do to get to the next level?
THE THREE WAYS TO RAISE MORE MONEY ONLINE
It’s important to understand that there are precisely three ways to grow a business. You can increase a) the number of customers, b) the average transaction value per customer, or c) the number of transactions per customer. That’s it.
It’s the same with donations. There are really only three ways to increase your individual fundraising.
- Find more donors
- Increase the average donation amount
- Get donors to donate more frequently
These are the levers you can pull. Ideally, you pull all three to get exponential results (double the people donating twice the average amount twice as frequently and you now have 8 times more money!) But even pulling just one lever can help a lot.
Here are three tactics sophisticated digital marketers use in the commercial world that smart nonprofits can learn from (hint: none of them have to be expensive.)