How-To-Guide: Kickstart your individual donor fundraising!

Do you want to start fundraising from individuals for your nonprofit, but not sure were to start? Here are some easy steps to kick start your individual donor giving program:

  1. First and foremost, you need a website! You can use free services like WordPress to create a website quickly and without needing to know all the technical coding.
  2. Once you have a website, you need to have a “donate” page so you can accept donations via credit card online. I have used Network for Good.
  3. And while we are online, get yourself a Facebook page!!
  4. In order to gain individual donors, you need to find people who are interested in your cause and begin to communicate with them so they can understand your programs and your financial need.
  5. The easiest (and cheapest!) way to engage and communicate with potential donors is via email! An easy way to manage your email lists and create beautiful and professional emails is through Constant Contact.

***Okay, are you still with me? Let’s get to the fundraising part!***

  1. At each event your organization hosts or whenever you are out and about in the community on behalf of your organziation, collect as many email addresses as you can.
  2. After meeting folks, send out an individual email (from your work account) reminding them how you met and giving them a link to your website so they can learn more about your cause.
  3. After you have had that personal one-on-one contact and only then, add them to your constant contact (or other email manager).
  4. Friend them through your Facebook page. This is always a great job for an intern!

***Now that you have a budding email list of individuals who are interested in your cause, it is time to solicit them***

  1. Always say “thank you” before “please”. In November (hopefully you have lots of emails at this point), send out an email to through constant contact thanking them for being part of your efforts and let them know what you have accomplished over the last year.
  2. In December, send out an email asking all guests to make a donation to help continue your conservation efforts. List different donation opportunities: $100 allows us to serve 10 kids in our after school program for one week, $500 purchases new equipment (be specific), $1,000 provides a flight for a sick endangered animal to a veterinarian specialist.
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