➡ Ask! Preferably one person at a time.
That’s right…ask! Ask personally and ask directly. When you ask people in a group email or social media post, they are less likely to give than if they hear from you personally.
➡ Ask for a specific amount
Your fundraising page has some suggested donation amounts built in. But when you’re reaching out to people personally, it helps to let them know what you’re asking for specifically. Suggest an amount that you think is right for them – $15, $30, or more.
➡ Choose a communication method that works.
Asking for donations is easier if you pick a method you are comfortable with. But keep in mind that email and personal texts are the most effective tools. Facebook posts and tweets are likely to get passed by, because they are directed to such a big audience.
So get personal! Email or text your potential donors individually with a short note telling them why Dance Marathon and its beneficiaries matter to you, why you’ve signed up, and why they should join you by making a donation. Remember to include the link to your page.
➡ Include your fundraising page in your email signature
Make sure you’re spreading the word by including something like this in your email signature: “I’m participating in the Baldwin Wallace Dance Marathon. This amazing event raises money to raise funds and increase awareness of the importance of HIV education and testing, and I’d love your support. Please consider donating.” Be sure to include a link to your page.
➡ Make a donation to your own page
Donors are more likely to give if they see that you’ve made your own commitment to Dance Marathon – even if it’s just a few dollars. When you ask people to give, you can tell them “I’ve made my own contribution because this cause is so important. Will you join me?”
➡ Personalize your page
Of course, you can share your page link right away – it’s all set up for you. But you’re more likely to raise more money if you update your photo and the text to tell your supporters why Dance Marathon matters to you.
➡ Thank your donors
Be sure to let your donors know how much their support means to you. Hand-written notes never go out of style, and personalized emails and public Facebook shout-outs are great, too! Be sure to send a final thank-you after the event, letting people know what you accomplished thanks to their help.
➡ Your goal is achievable – just break it down.
Let’s say your goal is $190. That might seem like a lot, but when you break it up into smaller donations, it will be easy to reach. Ask four family members to sponsor you for $25 each. Ask a few friends to donate $10. Ask four housemates or coworkers to give $15 each.
You did it! Thank everyone for their support, and consider raising your goal to motivate others people to give.
➡ Ask, ask, and ask again
Many people will wait to donate until you remind them. Remember, when you ask people more than once, you’re telling them how important this is to you. It is definitely OK to text or email people every couple weeks, and to post on Facebook a few times a week.
➡ Ask everyone
Think beyond friends and family. You can ask everyone you know to sponsor you: neighbors, colleagues, ex-coworkers…members of your faith community…people on your softball team…third cousins…your parents’ friends. Ask everyone!
➡ Don’t be discouraged if someone can’t donate.
We are so grateful that you’ve asked! When you ask someone to give, you’re helping to get the word out about pediatric HIV/AIDS. If you ask people directly and personally to donate, most will say “yes” because they’ll understand how important this it to you.
Come up with a special way to motivate your donors to give. Offer every donor a raffle ticket for a handmade item you’ll give after the event – like a scarf or a batch of cookies. Post a silly thank-you video for every donation you get. Write each one of your donor’s names on something you’ll wear during the event. Or come up with an idea of your own!
➡ I’m posting my page on social media, but I’m not getting much of a response.
Please don’t be discouraged - this is true for most of us! Facebook posts and tweets come at us a mile a minute and they’re easy to ignore. Email and text are far more effective, so make sure you're doing that.
➡ Share your success
Make a big deal about the milestones you hit in your fundraising efforts. Post on social media, send an email, and toot your own horn when you get your first donation, your fifth donation, and so on. Make a big deal when you’re halfway to our goal. Share your success – your enthusiasm will motivate people to give, and your donors will feel like they're part of something big.
➡ Think big
For some donors, $20 represents a large donation. But if you have a friend or family member who is able to give a larger gift, don’t be afraid to ask. People are much more likely to give when you ask for a specific amount, and every year our participants raise donations of $100, $250, $500 and beyond.
➡ Update your fundraising goal
Have you met (or surpassed!) your fundraising goal? Terrific! Keep going! Log in to your page and raise your goal. The more you raise, the more people EGPAF beneficiaries can help – it’s that simple.
➡ Update your fundraising page regularly
Update your page every week or two to give your donors something new to see every time they visit. It’s a great place to post updates on your fundraising milestones.
Are you a team captain?
➡ Customize your team page
Upload a photo. Replace the default text with information about your team and why you’ve chosen to come together at Dance Marathon. And consider changing your team fundraising goal. Make your goal ambitious, but realistic. Once you reach your goal, increase it to keep your donors and team members motivated!
➡ Reach out to your team
Be sure you’re communicating with your team regularly – an email or text once a week is great. Give an update about your team’s progress towards your goal, and make sure your team members know about the fundraising tips on our website! Make sure you communicate what you expect of your team members. We suggest asking everyone to try to reach their goal. These emails are a great place to talk about friendly competition.
➡ Friendly competition
Competition is a terrific motivator for many teams. Choose a team to compete with and call them out on social media. Keep it friendly and fun. Or, create competition among your team members when you email your team each week. Be sure to recognize anyone on your team who’s done particularly well in their fundraising that week!