Are social giving contests right for your organization?
Are social giving contests right for your organization?Non profits should approach social giving contests with the same level of evaluationand planning as any fundraiser. Organizations often experience a negative ROIwhen they abandon sound business practices for the lure of ‘easy money’. Copyright 2011 - HCM Brown www.hcmbrown.com
It’s a campaign,not a contest... Build partnerships…Instead of looking at social giving contests as Most social giving campaigns do not limit thean all-or-none opportunity, nonprofits should public to a single vote, but rather allow them toconsider the intangibles. Social giving contests vote for a number of organizations. Our naturaloffer an opportunity to excite your donor and reaction is to refuse to promote our competition,volunteer bases by elevating your nonprofit to a but smart organization’s recognize the potentialnational or even international stage. power of strong, trustworthy partnerships.Structure your campaign, to not only excite your In 2010, I leveraged partnerships to help 22current base of supporters but to encourage projects earn more than $750,000 in Pepsithem to share your story with their friends. Refresh Project grant funding. As a result ofIn 2010, I used such a campaign to ask our strong relationships formed in 2010, partnersfacebook fans to suggest their friends and family returned a year later to help several of those“like” our page. As a partners earn additional funding in other socialresult, our fan base grew Remember... givings campaigns, including a personal victoryby 25% in a single month in the Toyota 100 Cars for Good Project.and we gained the abilityto maintain contact All good things Partnerships with both local and non-localand build a relationship are taken in organizations can pay dividends far beyondwith our new fans. moderation. a single contest. Months after I completed aLikewise, encourage successful social giving contest, I found thatthe public to sign-up Use best practice one of my partners, 1,000 miles away, wasfor email reminders to in social media promoting our organizaiton’s facebook fan drive.both encourage ongoing posting and emailvoting and provide an marketing. Strong social giving partnerships can help toopportunity to maintain build a lasting relationship that be mutuallycontact. tapped in future campaigns.Structure your campaign to promote yourmission. The last campaign I worked on resultedin more than 2 dozen television, radio and printstories including two national features reachingmore than 54 million households. Take a guerrillaSize does matter… marketing approach…If you have ever monitored social giving contests, Think outside the box…you have noticed that smaller nonprofits have • Social Media Social Media alone willa distinct advantage. Smaller organizations, • Email Marketing not earn you that elusivewithout multiple levels of approval, are more grant. If you want toadept to making quick decisions in a world in • Voting Teams - earn funding through awhich you may only have days to evaluate a volunteers to drive social giving campaigncontest. In addition, smaller organizations tend the vote. then be prepared to useto be willing to accept the risk of defeat, as • Press Releases - every weapon in youropposed to a multinational nonprofit who cannot follow up with calls marketing arsenal.internally accept losing to another “smaller” to friendly mediaorganization. outlets. • Be sure to useSmaller organizations also have an added website widgets.benefit of a more tight-knit community of • Contact localsupporters and volunteers. Whereas, a large business groups.organization may rely upon a single email to30,000 supporters; a smaller organization might • Set up voting drivesinfluence three times that number by willing to on-location.engage in a online guerrilla marketing campaign • If text-messagingdesigned to attract votes. is enabled, contact sporting venues.