7 ways to Create Killer, Engaged Fundraising Campaigns (from #MDS11)

Because I can’t keep up with all the content from the Millennial Donor Summit, this guest post is from Willie Matis, a friend of mine working hard in the nonprofit health and advocacy arena.  Follow Willie on Twitter (@Willie_Matis) and his blog that’s full of tidbits of awesomeness.

After that action PACKED morning, I definitely agree with Nathan when he asked us if we have ever tried to take a drink from Niagara Falls.  During the 11:30 am session (EST that is), I got to hear from Zoetica co-founder, Geoff Livingston (@geoffliving). ‘Getting Connected with Social Media’ definitely followed the trend by dumping even MORE information into the Niagara Falls of millennial donor engagement information. I really like Geoff’s presentation because he gave half of his time presenting his own content and the other half to questions and answers.

These are the BIGGEST things to take away from Geoff’s presentation.

1. How to create a KILLER Social Fundraising Campaign

Authentic ties between the person asking for a donation and the cause are ESSENTIAL. Livestrong would not be what it is now if Lance Armstrong was not a cancer survivor.

2. Having a truly ENGAGED community

Ashton Kutcher is NOT that great. He has a ton of followers, but not many are engaged. An great example given by Geoff – charity:water

3. Give an IMPASSIONED ask

You need to ask several times a week and celebrate those who donate. Example given by Geoff – giveMN.org


Treat millenials like investors, show them how their money impacts the work, thank them, and give success stories.

And, here are my AHA moments from the presentation because I only had a bucket to catch some of the
water (I mean information).

5. AHA – Geoff talked about Pareto’s 80/20 Principle, but he put it in Social Media terms. This aha moment really connected number 2 above to the real world of social media for me. The principle means 80% of content should be interactions with your community and 20% of content should be mission driven posts. 80% of content must be interactive – this is how you get an engaged community.

6. AHA – Geoff gave an analogy to being at a baseball, hockey, basketball, really any sporting event.

He asked if we ever notice HOW CRAZY fans go to gain a $5 t-shirt that they will eventually use to wash their car. If you utilize your Facebook page correctly with contests, then you will gain an engaged community that in turn engages their OWN communities.

7. AHA – My last but not least aha moment came also from the question/answer portion.

Question: Should we use all forms of Social Media?

Answer: NO! Do one form only and do it really well. But here is where the aha comes in. When you do the one form really well, then you can spread that content throughout all other social media outlets. Geoff suggests a content dashboard such as WordPress to generate a community and in turn create content that can be shared via Twitter and Facebook , bookmarked with del.ic.ous and Reddit, and forwarded by followers.

Geoff Livingston has a WORLD of knowledge. Keep in touch with him, and I guarantee you will learn something!

7 thoughts on “7 ways to Create Killer, Engaged Fundraising Campaigns (from #MDS11)

  1. I think you brought up interesting points, but can you give me examples of engaging donors through contests that work for nonprofits? I see fan engagement working well in retail where coupons and new products are being pushed, but I don’t really see that being done well in the nonprofit world, especially the health care world.

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