Marian Amo, Online Marketing Coordinator
Computer Science Zone has compiled the following data highlighting the use of technology in charity fundraising. Charity Grow has taken advantage of technology to create it’s own online auction platform free for nonprofit and charity organizations.
By Marian Amo, Online Marketing Coordinator
Charity Grow has had the pleasure of working with the Granite Education Foundation in Utah since 2012. We spoke with the Organization’s chief executive officer, Brent Severe.
What is your organization about?
“The Granite Educational Fund is the nonprofit arm of the Granite School District, which serves about 67,000 students, of which 53% are below poverty. We have the largest population of immigrants in the state of Utah. We have been working for this community for 25 years, helping to provide students’ basic needs, such as clothes and shoes along with school supplies, such as backpacks, papers, pens and pencils. We also provide health care, dental and eye care. We have a board of about 25 individuals very passionate about the cause, recognized in the state of Utah as one of the best education nonprofits.”
What is your role and what led you to take part in it?
“I am the chief executive officer, the catch all guy, [who] works intimately with the board of education and board of directors. I help with partnering with organizations and the community and also lead major fundraising efforts. I have a huge soft spot for kids, especially for the under dog and underserved. I believe in giving them a better chance and opportunity. Education affects your life and future.”
Is there other work you do apart from the Granite Educational Fund?
“Yes, I dance. I am a ballroom dancer and I have danced all over Europe. I found my wife through ballroom dancing. I also serve on the board of many art organizations including our local Board of the Performing Arts, which has also partnered with Charity Grow.”
How have you been able to raise funds for your organization?
“We have regular fundraising actives, annual gala events, annual golf tournaments and student art night, which celebrates the fine arts with high school students. The kids love student art night because it allows them to compete live in the various mediums of art. Attendees donate by buying the art created by the students. Live competitions give students a chance to win scholarships for college as well. We are really big on collective impact so we partner with a lot of organizations in the Salt Lake City region. We use Charity Grow for the annual event, which proved to be a successful fundraising event. Charity Grow was great in its customer service for our organization. We are very pleased by their service. Utilizing Charity Grow in our fundraising efforts has elevated our patrons experience and helped secure much-needed additional funds. Charity Grow’s customer service and attention to detail are unmatched. We have found they offers a credibility signal to donors, which is especially important for non-profit organizations.”
What would you like to accomplish through your organization in the coming years?
“I would like to bring in more funds to meet the needs of the students and children in the area. I would like to see our organization become more proactive in meeting needs rather than reactive. It will require educating surrounding communities about the needs of the children and gaining more business partners to meet the need.”
To learn more about Granite Education Foundation, please visit www.granitekids.org or call (385) 646-GIVE (4483).
By Marian Amo, Online Marketing Coordinator
5. Engage in good works outside your organization
It may seem a bit counter-intuitive to engage in nonprofit fundraising and charity events outside your own organization’s efforts, but no matter how big or small, nonprofits rely on the care of others. It’s this intrinsic aspect of their blueprint that makes it essential for nonprofits to promote one another. By taking the time to support causes other than your own, it allows for other people who may have a connection to your organization even though they may be primarily supporting a different charity to know of your work and become engaged. It builds rapport, credibility and an admirable reputation that goes beyond just your circle of influence. Much of brand building is referral and recognition. Reaching people you won’t normally interact with is a great way to expand the awareness of your organization.
It goes without saying that the an organization’s lifeline lies in its nonprofit fundraising. Fundraising allows charities the opportunity to fund their projects and sustain their missions. Outside of government sponsored grants and in-kind donations by philanthropists, nonprofits depend on fundraising. There are many ways to fundraise, whether it’s a simple bake sale or an online charity auction. Fundraising is a great way to promote the good work your charity does and allow others to take part in building an organization that’s making a difference.
3. Be transparent regarding your allocation of funds
Since nonprofits run on the premise of caring more about doing good than traditional profits, it’s imperative that those who donate or participate in your nonprofit fundraising efforts understand their money is truly going to the cause they care about. It’s easy to encounter public suspicion or resentment if the majority of funds raised for a cause end up in someone’s pocket rather than in building a well in an impoverished country, or providing books for underserved children. Nonprofits that are transparent about the allocation of their funds build trust with their donors and supporters. Establishing trust in your supporters helps to secure new ones who measure the efficiency of a nonprofit by its management of funds.
2. Engage the public through social media
Social media is a tool. It’s a medium for connecting with others, it’s an electronic mouth piece for self expression, it’s an escape for entertainment, but more than anything else, it’s a tool for generating awareness and public knowledge. Nonprofits that don’t capitalize on the power of social media are missing out on a great tool to attract new supporters. Cultivating engagement on social media keeps supporters involved and builds momentum for a cause.
1. Think outside the box for campaigns
Events like Color Me Rad are perfect examples of creating campaigns that are outside the box. Creativity and innovation are essential in engaging potential new supporters. Unlike regular 5k runs, Color Me Rad is a 5k run through a spray painted obstacle course. It takes something as common as a run and makes it unique, fun and engaging. Another example of creative and innovative campaigns comes from Lifebeat, which helps fight HIV with music. Lifebeat created condoms that have a code printed on the wrapper that can be redeemed via the music streaming service, Spotify. They’re not just teaching safe sex, they’re making it entertaining to be safe. Thinking outside of the box draws attention that keeps supporters coming back with new ones.
Nonprofits are a reflection of humanity’s desire to serve one another and promote goodness all around. So get out there and start building support for your cause. It’s meeting a very important need!
By Marian Amo, Online Marketing Coordinator
Online charity auctions allow the nonprofit community to tap into the convenience and immediacy of the Internet for raising funds, but fundraising for a cause can have many variables that affect the success of an event. How can organizations maximize their online charity auctions and ensure they raise as much money as possible? Below are tips from the experts at Charity Grow to help charities increase fundraising dollars through their online charity auctions.
1. Get the word out
Excitement is contagious. If charities build excitement and energy prior to the launch of their online auction event, others will be drawn in, as well. An auction no one knows about won’t bring in any funds. In the age of social media, getting the word out has never been easier. Charity fundraisers prior to their event should create promotional flyers and e-mails promoting their auctions. Using Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, e-mail newsletters a week before the auction goes live gives potential bidders time and the encouragement to take interest in what the charity is planning. Create Twitter hashtags just for the online event. Promoting an online charity auction isn’t just about showcasing items available for bids. It’s the opportunity to remind supporters and potential supporters why their participation makes the work that charity does possible.
2. Diversify the auction items availability but cater to your audience
A variety of charity auction items in an auction increases the chances of gaining larger and more potential bids. Auction Items can range from tickets to sporting events to vacation packages, jewelry to autographed memorabilia. The more options included, the better the chances of someone taking interest in what’s available. It’s equally important to tailor an online charity auction to the audience that will be placing bids. Catering the auction item list to the demographic of the majority of supporters for an organization is a sure way to increase bids.
3. Send out Reminders and Instructions
Given all the information a person is bombarded with every day, it’s easy to forget important information or just ignore it altogether. Reminders are essential to building momentum for an online charity auction and maintaining the interest of potential participants. Along with those reminders, send out any instructions needed for the auction. Charity Grow’s online auction platform requires users to register first before they can bid on an item. Registration takes less than a minute and simply entails a username, e-mail, password and address. Those informations are NEVER sent out to third-party advertisers or distributors. Personal information is kept secure and only used for the delivery of sold items to winning bidders.
Contact a charity fundraising specialist at 888-232-2500 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on how your organization can take advantage of the online auction platform created by Charity Grow to raise funds for your cause.
By Marian Amo – Online Marketing Coordinator