Fundraising Tips for Twestival Local 2011 Organizers

Twestival Local 2011

I'm pleased to be providing fundraising coaching for Twestival organizers around the world. Here are some tips the team has developed over the last couple years. I've updated them this year and made sure they fit in 140 characters! :)

Hopefully these will be helpful even if you're not organizing a Twestival. (Organizers, these are also available in the Huddle workspace.)

Fundraising Tips for Local Twestivals

Twestival is about connecting people's skills and passions to help local charities. It's also about raising money so they can do even more! Here are some thoughts to help you make your event a success for you and for the nonprofit!

In the spirit of Twitter, these suggestions are limited to 140 characters. (with special thanks to @marcapitman for putting these together).

9 Fundraising Tips for Twestival Organizers

  1. Use multiple streams: ticket sales, donations, ads, corporate sponsors, sponsor space on blogs, raffles...the possibilities are endless!
  2. As your Twestival planning begins, consider identifying a key team that will focus "only" on fundraising.
  3. Do these events FOR nonprofits but don't put an extra burden on those nonprofits. They're already working hard. Twestival is to help!
  4. To help nonprofits, be sure to raise funds for their core mission, something that they can get excited about.
  5. The "right" event is key. When planning your event always have your audience and community in mind.
  6. Team up with others, fundraising is more fun in groups!
  7. Make sure that 100% of the money raised goes to the charity, not event costs. Get corporate sponsors to underwrite event.
  8. If you know organizers in other cities, a little healthy competition can help everyone raise more money!
  9. A helpful way to think of fundraising is "Get REAL": research the cause, engage the donor, ask them, and love them after

5 Fundraising Basics

  1. Set a goal, even if you don't publicize it. Having something to shoot for will help your raise more money
  2. Brainstorm a list of all potential sponsors. Many "traditional" companies would love to partner with your event.
  3. Once you have an overall goal, a tool like www.GiftRangeCalculator.com can help you determine sponsorship amounts.
  4. Try to communicate measurable outcomes. Like: "A gift of $1000 will send this many kids to camp."
  5. The #1 reason people give? They are asked. Go out and ask, even if you don't feel you have it all together.

3 More Fundraising Thoughts

  1. Passion and energy are contagious! Simply share with people your passion & ask them to join you with a donation!
  2. Think of fundraising like networking circles. Start with family, then friends, business' and ask them to do the same.
  3. Get your friends involved! 5 donations are great, but getting them to ask 5 of THEIR friends multiplies the effort - and the results!

A Few More Fundraising Thoughts

  1. Don't be afraid of the ask. People and organizations really want to make a difference. Twestival gives them that opportunity.
  2. Don't get discouraged by "no", just thank them for their time and ask if they could recommend a few friends that might be interested.
  3. Have FUN! Have FUN! -Stay positive and just do your best.

Tips for Nonprofits

  1. If you're chosen as a recipient, this is FOR you. Don't let it become a burden.
  2. Twestival can be an incredible boost to help promote your cause, increase your following and hopefully create an exciting annual event.
  3. If you're not chosen as the recipient organization, champion the one that is. Twestival will help you learn social media for your cause
  4. Please realize the are no guarantees on the amounts raised. Organizers are fans of your organization but not professional fundraisers!
  5. Help by creating bite size chunks of your cause. What will $100 do? How many homeless will be kept warm? How many kids sent to camp?

For more information on Twestival, check out this great blog post by Twestival founder, Amanda Rose: Twestival. Two years on..

To see if your city is hosting a Twestival, go to Twestival.com.

What would you add to the list?

About Marc Pitman

Marc A. Pitman is the author of Ask Without Fear!, director of The Nonprofit Academy, and founder of FundraisingCoach.com. A coach to leaders around the world, Marc's expertise and enthusiasm engages audiences and has caught the attention of media organizations as diverse as Al Jazeera and Fox News. Marc’s experience also includes pastoring a Vineyard church, managing a gubernatorial campaign, and teaching internet marketing and fundraising at colleges and universities. He is the husband to his best friend and the father of three amazing kids. And if you drive by him on the road, he’ll be singing 80’s tunes loud enough to embarrass his family!

Follow him on Google+, on Twitter @marcapitman, and like "Ask Without Fear!" on Facebook.

What would you add?