Fundraising For Charity
Non-Profits: You Can Raise Funds Without Paying for Ads or Marketing!
By Drew Gerber
When non-profit organizations arenâ€™t out changing the world, theyâ€™re appealing to supporters and the public for donations. Fundraising is a constant challenge for non-profit organizations and itâ€™s not because people donâ€™t want to give the money â€?itâ€™s because people donâ€™t always know that thereâ€™s a need.
Fundraising efforts include direct mailings, advertising, and marketing campaigns. Each of these is costly and thereâ€™s no way to guarantee return on investment. Wouldnâ€™t it be nice to be able to gain exposure and elicit donations without having to dip into the coffers? You can â€?theyâ€™re called â€śeditorial placements,â€?or as we in media relations like to say â€śfree advertising.â€?/P>
Newspapers and magazines live and die by their content. If people donâ€™t want to read what theyâ€™re printing, theyâ€™re in trouble. Being able to offer a print publication (or even a broadcast network) with a story that will entertain, educate, or inspires its readers is a challenge, but well worth it if itâ€™s printed.
Which of the following newspaper placements do you think will garner more public response: an ad placed in the â€śweekenderâ€?or â€śvolunteer opportunityâ€?sections describing your organization and asking for donations; or a touching feature story about how the organization is making a difference in the community? The feature story will almost undoubtedly send more people to an organizationâ€™s Web site than an ad, and the funny this is that the feature story cost the organization nothing to secure.
Why does the public respond more strongly to a feature than an ad? Because appearing in the media provides instant legitimization. People tend to trust the organizations or people they see in the paper or on TV. If you run a non-profit animal shelter that is featured on the weekend nightly newsâ€?adopt-a-pet segment, chances are the public will think of you first when looking to adopt a pet as opposed to if you simply placed an ad in the Sunday paper every week.