Fundraising – Cultivating Social Media “Major Donors”

September 28, 2009 at 10:00 am 1 comment

Raising money using social media is still being tested and we have not seen great gains. A decade ago, the nonprofit industry complained and worried about on-line giving. Now on-line giving is standard operating procedure and accounts for 1% of all giving in the US.

We have to embrace this new media. Let’s talk about major donors in a new way. Previous post talked about defining who makes a social media “major donor” and how to identify them.

This post talks about how to cultivate social media major donors once you have identified them. Outreach to folks who have chosen to follow or friend you is easy. But like any major donor cultivation program – outreach needs to strategic and personalized to the donors interests. Fortunately, social media makes it easy to determine their interests and follow up accordingly.

  • Start a personal dialogue
    • Start following/responding/re-tweeting their posts/tweets/photos etc.
    • Ask them a question
    • Set up a poll to select people
    • Share information you think would be interesting to them
      • Re: your organization
      • In general based on something they posted or you found
  • Send your e-news to their email address – (Be sure to post a link to your social media network.)
    • Ask them for their email if it isn’t posted
    • Ask them if they would like to receive it
  • Personally invite them to live events
    • Volunteer
    • Fundraising
    • Program

Much of this should sound familiar – it is classic major donor cultivation. We need to remember our social media friends when planning our major donor outreach. Add 5-10 social media major donors to your files and start the cultivation process. We do this well with traditional major donors – we need to expand our outreach to include our on-line friends and followers.

Next post – Engaging social media major donors in fundraising.

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Entry filed under: Fundraising, Social Media. Tags: , , , .

Fundraising – Identifying Social Media “Major Donors” Raising Money using Social Media

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Marion Conway  |  September 28, 2009 at 10:47 am

    Hi Barbara,

    Thanks for this straightforward advice about cultivation and social media. I’ll be spreading this advice at my Social Networking for Nonprofits workshop next week.



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