Although the final purpose is raising money for a cause, the first priority of nonprofit organizations needs to be creating supporter communities. Donations should not be regarded as one-time business transactions, but rather like regular proofs of a trusting relationship between the nonprofit and its donors.
The most successful charities are those which understand the importance of giving back to supporters and which find a compelling and informal way of engaging audiences and offering something in return.
Contests are highly-effective promotion methods because they motivate people to take action by promising a prize in exchange. The good thing for your organization is that during the process, supporters taking part in online contests offer your organization free publicity and social media exposure.
The value a contest creates for an organization is often bigger than the prize itself.
Check our tips on how to use contests to build a community around nonprofit to attract supporters:
Use social networks intensively to promote the contest
This is where your audiences are located and where you can gain new fans or followers and more supporters for your cause.
KISS – Keep It Simple Stupid
A contest requiring participants to complete 10 different steps will end up in a fiasco.
Organize the contest carefully
Make sure you can keep your promise and offer the prize to the winner. Rule out any technical issues, like surveys that do not open or forms that lead to an error page.
Start with loyal audiences
Promote your contest intensely to people who are likely to take part in it and they will also attract supporters from their inner circle.
Challenge people to do something which supports your cause
When contest participants truly care about your mission and values, their biggest reward is the idea they have made a change or at least have increased awareness.
Use your imagination!
Some contest ideas are: submitting photos or videos which are related to the cause, asking people to play a game and rewarding the participant with the best results, writing an essay about someone’s contribution to the cause, etc.
Once you have convinced a prospect to enter your contest, you have gained one more member of your supporter community and one more possible donor!
Need help with implementing creative fundraising ideas?