Coronavirus and Beyond: How To Strengthen Your Digital Campaigns and Fundraising

If Covid-19 has turned your charity’s world upside down, you’re not alone.

After the initial flurry of digital activity in response to lockdown, many charities are now making plans for a “new normal” – in which digital plays a major, long-term role in campaigning and fundraising.

So how can your charity improve campaigning and fundraising efforts during lockdown and set yourself up for long-term digital success?

Here are a handful of the tips, tactics and tools we’ve been sharing with our partners – we hope you’ll find them useful too.

Lockdown-friendly tactics to grow and engage your audience

Find your gaps

Covid-19 might have forced you to transition to digital campaigns overnight, with little time to put processes in place. So after the initial whirlwind of digital activity, take stock of any gaps.

Do you need to know how to build Facebook ads that get more clicks, or how to get more opt-ins to grow your email list? If you’re not sure where to begin, start benchmarking your data so you have a clear picture of your success so far.

People want to be engaged – and make real change

While folks are frustrated at home, they want both engaging content and to be doing something useful. Take a look at these great at-home-friendly campaign tactics that can grow your supporter base: World Animal Protection and Changing Markets.

With Changing Markets, we used a quiz to re-engage existing supporters with the campaign. An impressive 41% went on to take action, so this could be a solid engagement strategy for your existing supporters, too.

Capitalise on the rise in phone time

Social distancing means we’re on our phones more than ever, so use this to your advantage. Encourage organic sharing to help your campaigns go further, for free.

Use our WhatsApp link generator to add links to share buttons anywhere, including emails and landing pages. Facebook still rules the roost, but we’ve found that shares via Whatsapp can actually generate 15x more traffic.

Maximising digital fundraising in response to Covid-19

Make sure you can communicate the need

So many charities have had their funding badly hit by Covid-19. More than ever, you need to be able to express your need for support.

The good news is, you don’t need to be a campaigning or advocacy organisation to raise money online – you need to build a movement story, articulate your real-world success, and give your supporters meaningful ways to engage with your cause.

Build your email list of supporters

Reach out to new donors by actively building your email list. You can use handraisers (promoted using Facebook ads) to build your list, then send your new supporters a tailored email welcome series designed to encourage donations.

We recently ran a handraiser project with Reprieve that delivered a 300% return on investment – recouping 50% of the Facebook ad spend in the user journey alone, before a single fundraising email was sent.

Make donating as simple as possible

Times are hard for supporters as well as charities, so people might think harder before they reach for their purse. Make it as easy as possible for someone who wants to donate to you.

That means things like using buttons of varying amounts in your fundraising emails – which we’ve found consistently generate more donations than text links. You can use this button generator to quickly build and customise donation buttons to add to your emails, landing pages and home screen pop-ups.

We hope you find these ideas and resources useful. If you need more support with digital mobilisation or fundraising in the wake of Covid-19, get in touch!