chapter 15 Online Fundraising

Online fundraising involves using e-mail, your website, and other online strategies, including blogs, crowdfunding, search engine optimization, and social media such as Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, LinkedIn, Instagram, and so on, usually in combination with each other and with offline efforts, to help raise money and build relationships with donors. Social media allows anyone with access to the Internet to follow your work and comment on it. Crowdfunding makes it possible to aggregate lots of gifts into a significant amount, allowing people who can only make smaller donations to do so and to feel good about it. The speed of crowdfunding has worked very well for getting money quickly to on-the-ground organizations for natural disaster aid; funding special, time-limited projects; and fueling a lot of political campaigns. However, the very democracy and immediate access the Internet provides means you are in an almost unimaginable competition for attention. According to research compiled by The Cultureist ( in 2015, about 2.5 billion people use the Internet every day, 144 billion e-mails are sent each day, and almost 140,000 new websites are launched each day. For every online appeal that works well, there are dozens that languish. The difference is all about the quality and quantity of your lists and the strength of your message.

So how can a small social change organization with one or two staff (or fewer) dedicated to fundraising ...

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