Archive for the ‘Non Profit Fundraising’ Category

Five Tips to Starting a Successful Non-Profit

Tuesday, July 29th, 2014

Starting a non-profit requires careful planning and thorough execution. It is a challenging endeavor, and not everyone succeeds in creating a sustainable and successful non-profit.

Here are 5 useful tips before you start your non-profit:

Make a realistic assessment of your idea

Being passionate about a non-profit idea is one thing, and being realistic is another. You need to assess the potential and viability of your idea in the prevailing economic conditions and environment. Financial sustainability of your non-profit is critical. You need to ask yourself tough questions such as: Is there a real gap or need that the proposed non-profit going to help fulfil? Do extensive research before going ahead with the implementation of your idea.

Make a detailed business plan

The more thoroughly you plan your non-profit in advance, the better the chances of its survival. Create a comprehensive business plan for your non-profit that includes the expected sources of funding, the central mission and purpose of the non-profit for which the funding will be utilized, and the estimated overhead expenditures, both fixed and recurring. Apart from financial budgeting, your business plan should also incorporate the marketing plan and strategies that will be used for fund-raising.

Determine how your idea will qualify as a non-profit

You not only need to have a great idea, but you also need to determine whether that idea is acceptable as non-profit or a charitable cause in the eyes of the authorities. You need to acquire information about how an entity gets qualified as a non-profit, how it may attain a tax-exempt status, and what procedures are required for its incorporation.

Fulfill all legal obligations before launching your non-profit

There are stiff regulations that govern the establishment and operations of a non-profit, both at the federal and the state levels. The government’s top concern is to ensure that any unscrupulous people may not succeed in duping the citizens in the name of a non-profit. Therefore, it is very essential that you fulfil all the legal requirements carefully before going ahead with your non-profit operations.

Initiate necessary alliances and tie-ups
Your non-profit may not be able to operate in isolation. You may need to collaborate or partner with other organizations in the pursuit of your non-profit’s mission and goals. Therefore, short-list the probable entities with whom it may be suitable to create mutually beneficial relationships. Initiate communication with them to know their response and their requirements. It will keep you well prepared so that by the time you launch your non-profit you can get going with your mission quickly, without losing much time and money.

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How Will You Promote Your Non-Profit Fundraiser?

Wednesday, July 2nd, 2014

Non-profits organize fundraisers to collect money for their year-round social programs and activities. They host parties to hold charitable dinners and outdoor functions. However, as the main reason behind hosting such events is to raise money, the non-profits should know the ways of effectively promoting their fundraising programs.

Parties

Start organizing parties and balls of different sizes to attract people. Send invitations to your friends and colleagues requesting them to attend the party. Have proper seating arrangements and serve food and drinks to the guests to ensure customer satisfaction.

Dinners

Create excitement and enhance your non-profit fundraising event by holding a gala dinner. You can also promote your good cause by offering special prizes or a holiday trip to some exotic island! Declaring prizes will ensure maximum ticket sales and thus, generate greater revenues.

Outdoor Events

Arrange outdoor events to collect higher funds from people of diverse backgrounds. Introduce different games and make the donors participate freely. Summer and winter carnivals give you a chance to enjoy your time out and win exciting prizes.

Facebook

One of the best ways of promoting your non-profit fundraiser is to send out the message through Facebook. This hugely popular social networking site has millions of users hooked to it almost 24×7. The portal will give you an edge over your competitors in freely uploading your event details and pre-event images on your page. Facebook users liking your page will click on the ‘Like’ button and this is how you can count on the number of people liking your event(s).

Smartphone

Non-profit event organizers can also use smartphones to market their events. You can provide all event details in a convenient place, right on the mobile phones of your event attendees. Besides, smartphones offer easy access to any fundraising information within seconds! Many Cloud-based event and class management solutions have developed an in-built mobile application to let organizations share their program-related information with their customers.

YouTube

This video sharing website can act as a very powerful marketing tool. Record what your guest speakers are saying as well as the feedback of the audience after the event. You can upload an unlimited number of videos of your past events on YouTube. People will get to know how successfully you have organized the seminars. The videos help you advertise for similar occasions in future and these also act as a valuable proof that your event was a grand success.

Thus, we can see there are a good number of techniques to get maximum donations and pledges from individuals. Hope the method (s) applied by your non-profit work toward attracting support for your good cause.

Jonathon is a professional event planner. Event professionals worldwide are increasingly relying on automated software to streamline the online event registration, payment management, and attendee relationship management. Acteva is the market leader in providing event registration, & management solutions at competitive cost.

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Thanking Raffle Donors

Thursday, September 1st, 2011

There are many follow-up tasks to a successfully concluded raffle, from delivering prizes to winners to filling out any necessary legal or tax forms. One item that you should make an effort not to forget is thanking your raffle prize donors. If an individual or organization has been generous enough to give your cause a prize to raffle off, a show of gratitude is definitely in order.

Your gratitude can take many forms: everything from a simple Thank You card to a gift certificate or other small token of appreciation. When choosing your method, keep in mind the nature of the donation as well as of the relationship between your organization and the donor. A thank you to a parent who donates a gift basket to a school fundraiser will probably look different from a thank you to a major corporation that has donated a car to a cancer charity.

Match Your Raffle Prizes to Your Non Profit Cause

Tuesday, August 16th, 2011

When you’re thinking about what items to offer as prizes for your organization’s raffle, it’s a good idea to consider prizes that have something to do with the organization itself. Not only will this help you to start generating prize ideas more quickly, but it is also likely to generate larger raffle ticket sales.

For instance, say you are organizing a raffle for a non profit that helps get kids involved in sports. Who is most likely to be interested in helping out such an organization by buying raffle tickets? People who believe that sports can play a positive role in someone’s life. In other words, people who are interested in sports themselves. So make the tickets even more tempting by offering sports-related prizes.

Make sure to order custom raffle tickets on which you can list the prizes you’re offering. That way, ticket buyers can show their tickets to friends and the prizes are listed right there for them so they don’t need to remember specifics. A little bit of free marketing.

Location-Centric Raffle Prizes

Friday, August 12th, 2011

Well here’s a fantastic idea: The Red Sox Foundation is raffling off a chance for golfers to take a swing at Fenway with Hall of Famer Jim Rice. The opportunity has to be darn near irresistible for Bostonians with a penchant for putting. The proceeds of the raffle go to the foundation itself, plus, if the golfer can hit a target out in center field a $50,000 donation will also be made to the charity in the winner’s name.

While this particular prize may not be one your organization can manage to offer, you can certainly generalize the prize IDEA and come up with something great along the same lines that you can offer. Is there a local landmark in your area? Or just a place that’s iconic to local residents? Offer them a chance to do something really unique in that location. Something that they wouldn’t normally have the opportunity to try. You’ll be selling raffle tickets like there was no tomorrow.

Summer Flower Raffle

Tuesday, July 19th, 2011

There are few things that will perk up someone’s day than receiving a beautiful bouquet of flowers.  The bring so much joy and happiness to the receiver.  Even potted or hanging plants are just as beautiful, and are readily available.  I have a great idea for a raffle fundraiser involving summer flowers for any group that is fundraising this summer.

The idea is to raffle off summer flower bouquets deliveries.  Contact a local nursery or florist that will sell you flowers at a discount since you will be ordering a lot of them. Send order forms and raffle tickets home with the people doing the fundraising so that people can either buy a raffle ticket to have a bouquet sent to them or another person, or they can just order flowers that they want through you.  Either way, it is a great way to raise money for your cause.

Some fantastic summer flowers to include in your raffle/fundraiser are Asters, Birds of Paradise, Calla Lilies, Chrysanthemums, Casa Blanca Lilies, Daisies, Geraniums, Orchids, Pansies, etc.  The possibilities of arrangements could even been made to order as well!

State-by-State Raffle Laws

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011

Raffles, even for charity, are illegal in many states. Before you begin planning one for your organization, make sure you look into the relevant gaming laws. Here we’ve provided links to the most up-to-date information for all 50 states plus Washington, D.C. These laws are subject to change, so we’ve also provided the name of the government body on whose site we found the information.

Double Win for Police Association Raffle

Monday, December 20th, 2010

Loving this story today. The Centralia Police Officers Association recently raffled off a truck in hopes of raising a small amount of money. But guess what? The man who won the truck (a business owner from out of town) donated it right back! That’s right–not only did they get some money by selling their raffle tickets, but they got to keep the truck for their own use in the community. That’s some serious generosity on the part of the towing company owner who won the raffle.

I really love this idea. I like to buy raffle tickets from charities when I can afford it. They don’t usually cost any more than $20 at most, so I’m not really out much when I don’t win (and who ever expects to?). But say I did win a prize from an organization that I really cared about? It never would have occurred to me to donate the prize right back, but what a great thing it would be. Say the prize is worth something like $1000 (or even more like the truck in this story). That’s like being able to donate all of that money to a cause that I care about for only $20. It doesn’t hurt my budget, and could do so much for an NPO.

Attracting Sponsors

Monday, November 22nd, 2010

Unlike with some other forms of fundraising, in order to host a raffle you need to have some money budgeted to begin with. If you really want people to buy your raffle tickets, you need to be able to offer attractive prizes which means spending some cash long before you see any return on your efforts. However, if you put some careful thought into your raffle beforehand, you can often find ways to reduce this initial outlay.

One significant way to save money on your prizes is to find sponsors for your raffle. Individuals or organizations willing to donate their time, money or products to your cause. Of course, the more worthy they consider the cause, the easier this will be. If you’re a non-profit organization, it’ll probably be a lot easier to find sponsors. But you can also create incentive for sponsors by giving them something more in return for their generosity than just your sincere thanks. One very easy way to do this is to include your sponsors’ names on the raffle tickets themselves. This shouldn’t cost you any extra, and it gives your sponsors free advertising. Their name will reach as many people as your fundraising does.

Attention Sports Fans!

Monday, November 1st, 2010

Just in case there are any Lakers fans out there who haven’t heard yet (perhaps you were in a cave all weekend?), Ron Artest is raffling off his 2010 NBA Championship ring! Artest announced the raffle last Wednesday night on Larry King Live, and the raffle winner will be chosen on Christmas day, December 25. The announcement was followed by a record-breaking $120,000 of ticket sales in just 24 hours. You can buy tickets on Artest’s own site, www.ronartest.com, or an alternate site set up by CNN, www.netraffle.org. (The alternate site was apparently set up because Artest’s site crashed with the heavy inflow of traffic!)

Tickets for the Win My Bling raffle cost only $2.00 and the proceeds will fund mental health services for youths who can’t afford the care. Artest has been a celebrity supporter of making mental health services more easily available ever since apologizing for a fan/player brawl he was involved in in 2005. In that apology, he publicly thanked his psychiatrist for the help he’d received. This raffle therefore appears to be part PR, part personal. In any case, don’t miss out on a once-in-a-lifetime chance for a Lakers’ fan.