Digital fundraising training

International Tibet Network
Bozen/Bolzano, 1 July 2018


Glyn Thomas

Twitter: @glynmthomas

What we'll cover today


2. Case studies - recruiting new donors

3. Ways your organisations can reach new people


4. Testing and Optimisation

6. Retention

1. Key principles of digital fundraising

5. Legacies

1. Key principles



2. Case studies

1. War on Want

2. Refugee Action


3. Liberty

1. War on Want


2. Refugee Action


3. Liberty


All have the three parts of the funnel

1. Bring new people to a campaign action = prospecting

2. Engage them with interesting emails and other things to do = building trust

3. Convert to donor = fundraising


Every step in the process is crucial

Step 1 - Facebook ads

Same principles apply to organic social media content

Facebook ads

Who will you advertise to?

Content of the ads

Spending as little as possible on the adverts


Create one advert set for each audience

eg. People who like your Facebook page

Bid strategy

Always set the payment basis as cost per click (not impression)

Start low eg. €0.25 per click

Wait 7 days

Then increase by €0.10

Wait 7 days

(Repeat until you're bringing in supporters at the right cost)

Step 2 - Email

A range of content

Supporter journey

Opportunity to build relationship with supporter

before asking for a donation

Step 3 - Convert to donor


Web pages

Why should someone donate?


Why should someone donate?

What's the benefit to them, and what's the benefit to the organisation?

What difference will it make?

What will you spend the money on?

Refugee Action

Every week, people seeking asylum come to us looking for help because they have nowhere else to turn. Right now, we’re able to help around 84 of them. Sadly, we can’t afford to help the others. You can help us change this: start a £3 monthly gift today.


What's your proposition?

Why should someone donate to your organisation?

3. Ways your organisations can reach new people

1. Sharing petitions/campaigns

Facebook, Twitter, Email

WhatsApp, Messenger

2. Creative content

(making it "go viral")


Also part of number 2 in the funnel - building trust

Language used


- Think of a story that relates to your organisation or your work

- Write a Facebook post to tell this story


- Most organisations that try this see this as the aim

- But the aim should be for the people who donate to your crowdfunding campaign to become members/regular donors






- think about your 1-2 campaign priorities

- who else might be interested in those campaigns?


3. Google Ads


Important when your organisation or Tibet is in the news

Does it work?


Global Witness - Mossack Fonseca

Hundreds of visits to their website, at around €0.10 per visit

Exercise - write an advert

Headline: 60 characters

Content: 80 characters

4. SEO - Search Engine Optimisation

Important when your organisation or Tibet is in the news

All the content on your page has two jobs

It needs to work for your supporters and potential supporters.

And it needs to work for search engine bots so that they can display what you want to display in search results, for the most relevant search terms.

Key elements

Headings - especially the page title

Page content - especially the first paragraph

Alt text of images

4. Testing and optimisation


Google optimise


5. Legacies


6. Retention


I signed up as a regular donor to 25 charities


2 charities sent
0 emails

3 charities sent
a welcome email -
then nothing

Charities that suggested other ways to get involved (non-financial)


In one year I was asked for money in 92% of the communications I received

Lisa Sargent

Donor retention specialist - how to thank people well

Some final thoughts to consider



Things I haven't talked about


Banner adverts



Another valuable resource


Showcase of Fundraising Inspiration and Innovation



My recipe for digital fundraising

1. Take part in campaign and join email list

2. Learn more about your organisation via email
and/or social media content

3. Do another campaign action/quiz/survey

4. Make a small first donation eg to a crowdfunder - small amount, very specific purpose

5. Stewardship - thank them, demonstrate made a difference

6. Become a member - use all this knowledge you've gained to personalise the ask

2 more key ingredients


Hard work

Thanks for listening!


Digital fundraising training - version to share

By Glyn Thomas

Digital fundraising training - version to share

international Tibet Network, June 2018

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