The text inbox is the inbox donors prefer! So why not start fundraising with P2P texting?
Fundraising has always been an essential skill to have, and the wide range of tools available to do it well has never been richer. Effectively raising money is a key component in running any successful organization, including charitable, non-profit, religious, and advocacy groups, as well as politicians, for-profit companies, and individuals.
With the rise of technology changing how we operate, it’s important to tailor your approach towards fundraising to accommodate the new ways people prefer to be reached. Online fundraising has become the preferred method of raising money across all demographics and is quickly gaining momentum as organizations make the necessary transition to adopting more tech-savvy tools.
Charity Dynamics conducted a survey in 2014 asking a group of professionals who work extensively in fundraising what they predict will be the top trends in fundraising over the next 10 years. When asked what digital medium will have the biggest growth for fundraising, the majority indicated that smartphones would come out on top:
In the years since, their predictions have proven themselves true. The most popular digital fundraising methods used today include online donation pages, text-to-give, mobile silent auctions, and peer-to-peer (P2P) fundraising. Research done by the Blackbaud Institute has indicated that mobile giving is on the rise, increasing steadily year by year to 24% in 2018. They concluded their findings with a warning to organizations relying on fundraising, saying;
“every... organization needs to understand that being mobile-friendly is linked to being donor-friendly. This is no longer optional, and a lack of mobile-friendly websites, donation forms, and emails will put [you] at a distinct disadvantage. All these tools should be used in combination to maximize the supporter giving experience.”
If you want to enhance your current digital fundraising operation and stand out to donors, you need to start raising money with the most personal and direct method of outreach: texting.
Peer-to-peer (P2P) texting allows you to get your message across through the channel proven to have the highest visibility and response rate. People simply care about the texts they get more than other types of traditional outreach such as email, phone calls, or direct mail. This is why over 90% of texts are read within the first 3 minutes with an average total open rate of 95%. We’ve seen successful fundraising messages sent to millions of people, all achieving an average open rate of 95%. Peer-to-peer texts are sent by a real human being and generate better outcomes than impersonal robotexts.
Results, Results, Results
The response rate of a channel should be a key consideration for your fundraising messages because direct engagement leads to more money raised. P2P texting significantly outperforms traditional channels with the industry average response rate ranging from 10–20%, which is almost 10x higher engagement than email and 20x higher engagement than direct mail.
Through our experience optimizing hundreds of unique text-to-fundraise programs, we have found an optimal formula for prospecting new donors, increasing engagement with current donors, and reinitiating past ones - resulting in more money raised across the board. P2P texting makes it easy to facilitate seamless, personalized conversations that lead to meaningful interactions and spark real action. This means that along with providing a dependable channel for collecting generous donations, you also have the capability to build strong relationships. Here’s how to have successful fundraising with P2P:
1) Genuine connection starts with a genuine introduction.
Establishing who you are before asking for someone’s time and money significantly increases a person’s willingness to give. This is achieved by sending more than just fundraising texts. In the first text you send someone, introduce yourself and your organization. Let them know who you are, what you stand for, and why they should care. After engaging with them in an intro is when you can begin to send fundraising texts.
Don’t, however, let fundraising be the only thing you text them.
In between every donation ask, send a text that adds value to their life in some way. This can be as simple as recognizing a national holiday or birthday, sending a message about relevant breaking news affecting your cause, an update on projects or initiatives going on, a picture of volunteers or team members to further humanize your organization, a video sharing a visual story, or asking a survey question (or questions) to let them share their opinion with you. All of these are excellent ways to keep your donor audience engaged and make them more receptive to hearing from you (and giving more money as a result!).
2) After initial outreach comes effective fundraising messaging
Of the many fundraising campaigns we have run over the past years, the most successful have included at least one of the following elements in their messages:
- Call to action aids such as suggestions for a reasonable dollar amount to donate along with deadlines
- An explanation for why the person should donate/what their money will go towards
- A shortened link directing supporters to a mobile-optimized donation page (with RumbleUp, we provide a built-in link-shortening tool to do this that also tracks click-throughs for you)
- MMS attachments such as pictures, videos, or GIFs to complement and support your message copy. This makes your text more interesting to open and has been proven to boost average response rates by over 50%. Our unmatched Enhanced Video Texting feature allows you to include full 30sec+ TV/YouTube quality videos embedded right along with your text message. Our platform's ability to do this is unrivaled in the industry and we have seen significantly high engagement rates across the board for our clients who utilize this feature. Instead of just posting your videos online, send them directly to the people who you want to watch them.
For an even more seamless fundraising solution, check out our simple text-to-donate integration with Anedot. If the recipient is a registered donor with Anedot, all they need to do is reply back with the keyword you choose (ex. “YES”) plus the dollar amount they wish to give, and their donation will be automatically processed
If the recipient is not yet a registered Anedot donor, you can send them a link to donate in the response you send them after they reply. Once they donate and are registered with Anedot, their future donations can be automatically processed simply by texting you back.
3) Finally, be sure to respond to your supporters
The most crucial element to lasting, successful fundraising is simply responding to supporters who text you back.
Good donor relations are built on active stewardship. If your donors don’t feel their contributions are appreciated, they won’t continue to be donors for very long. It is vital to both recognize and thank your donors and show them the impact their contributions have made in order to cultivate future giving.
RumbleUp provides an advanced toolset to easily do this with our customizable tagging and segmentation features. Flexible automated tagging can be used to keep track of the types of responses you’re getting back and plan follow-ups based on the information people share. Whether the focus is identifying new supporters, thanking current donors, or providing specific information and resources, tagging ensures you never lose track of a conversation and the picture it helps fill in of your donor.
P2P texting is the ideal channel for fundraising because of how personal and direct it allows you to be, and RumbleUp is packed with all the tools you need to be successful in doing so. Our industry-leading feature set and dedicated involvement in each of our clients’ personal success have established us as the go-to partner for campaigns and organizations of all sizes.
Our goal is to equip you with proven best practices and keep you ahead of the game, with our best-in-class customer support team always available to help.
Sign up and start texting today at RumbleUp.com or contact our sales team to talk more about your specific use case and how we can make texting work for you. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org