You have the passion, the idea, the organization…when you started your charity or began working for a favorite cause you imagined throngs of people all clamoring to help solve this huge problem. Well, people probably didn’t start lining up to support you or your cause for quite some time right? Are you still struggling to get people to support your cause? Do you need more supporters? Duh…of course you do. If you don’t have a million dollar marketing budget a team of social media experts or a full-time person working on Google Adwords campaigns it is tough to get noticed through all the noise.
Don’t fret…there are still plenty of ways to gain traction for your cause with a small budget and a small team. Try one (or all) of the ideas below to get 1, 10, or thousands of new supporters for your cause. You never know which supporter or group of supporters will help propel your cause to the next level.
- Use Events. You don’t have to spend hours, days, or weeks planning an event or even thousands of dollars to use events to bring people to your cause. One of the best ways to grow your support is to piggy back off of special occasions such as New Year’s Resolutions, the Super Bowl, or other popular events and holidays. For example you can host a small viewing party, an online challenge, or tie your cause in directly to the event. Use press releases and social media posts to share the information with your existing supporters and people interested in the core event or occasion.
- Use Technology. Free your staff to focus more on their mission and less on things like fundraising and event planning. There are several great tools that allow NPOs to effectively manage their email, finances, and events. Using the right technology the right way can allow staff to be more productive to reach out to the important supporters; the influencers in your industry. Imagine staff spending less time in spreadsheets and more time connecting with the important stakeholders in your field. Also, see the benefits of using technology to identify potential new supporters through real-time data. Technology is a great friend that can be used to grow your organization. Bonus Tip– When researching technology platforms always check to see if there is a discount or free version for NPOs.
- Use National Awareness Days to spread your message. There are many awareness days that any organization can use to promote themselves. Use this wisely and your supporter base will grow. Every month has several days that just about any charity can use to promote their message.
- Find an Ambassador. Whatever your cause, surely there is a celebrity or athlete that can relate to what you’re trying to do. Pay attention to social media for keywords and hashtags that relate to your cause from celebrities and then connect with them when the time is right.
- Tell your story. Newspapers, blogs, Facebook Pages, and radio stations are all looking for great news stories. Every time you have a victory in your organization, no matter how small or insignificant it may seem, let people know about it. By celebrating our small victories we can let people know more about what we’re doing and share in the vision for a brighter future. See our post on telling stories for more ideas.
- Find Partners. Whether it is corporate supporters, small businesses, schools, or communities of faith partnering with other organizations not only expands your reach but creates opportunities to gain donors, volunteers, and necessary community support.
- Go where the people are. If you can access platforms, blogs, or other communities (online or in person) where large numbers of people that may support you congregate, even if it costs a little bit of money for access you can benefit from the increased exposure. For example, Fitbit already has millions of users…why not use a platform like fitRaise that can help you reach those millions of users and encourage them to support your cause?
- Host a community session. People can’t support your cause or for that matter donate to it or volunteer to help with it if they do not know about it. Whether you’re just getting started or already have a wide geographic reach, community sessions can provide your staff and volunteers with an opportunity to share the core message and how others can get involved. It doesn’t have to be big and it can be tied in with other events. For example, try to get in on month meetings with the Rotary Club, local political parties, or church groups. Most of these organizations would be happy to let you have 5-10 minutes to share your cause and how they can help.
Growing your base of supporters is a great way to increase the reach of your organization and expand its impact. It can also be a challenge. Consider spending some time with the tactics mentioned above and celebrate every new supporter as your organization grows. When you have several supporters that are ready to go the extra mile for your cause with their own fitness activities reach out and we’ll get you set up here on fitRaise to raise money and awareness with every step, stride, or stroke of the pedal.
Have other ideas to get supporters to your cause? Let us know in the comments below so we can share your success with our network.