Category: Fundraising 101 (page 1 of 11)

Your Comprehensive 12 Month Fundraising Plan for 2020

A year sounds like a long time until… it’s not. That’s why you need to create a comprehensive fundraising plan to keep you on track. If you don’t create tangible goals and set yourself up for success those months will fly by before you know it.

flip calendar on a desk top

Need help raising money for your meaningful travel? Get yourself a 12 month fundraising plan!

It can be overwhelming to think about all the fundraising stories and letters you need to write, Instagram posts you need to polish, and bake sales you need to organize to meet your fundraising goals. That’s why we’ve laid out a fundraising plan example for you to peruse at your leisure!

It gives you enough time to lay everything out in a strategic, realistic way. A 12 month fundraising plan gives you a chance to adjust goals, assess your stress and strength points, and roll out a successful fundraising campaign that gets you to that meaningful travel experience.

What are you raising money for?

Meaningful travel means something different to everyone, but at the end of the day, you’ll need some moolah to actually do it. Whether you’re gungho on a semester abroad in the Philippines, or you’ve dreamed about volunteering with sea turtles your entire life, the nitty gritty reality is that these things cost money. 

Find out how FundMyTravel Works → 

You can raise money to volunteer abroad — for a few weeks, for a few months, even a year. Life changing, no doubt, but you’re not making money when you volunteer. Sometimes you get a living stipend or food help, etc., but you’ll be primarily living off of savings. 

PeaceCorps is another great organization to get involved with, but living without a paycheck for two years can be a little financially draining. 

If you’re an intern abroad, getting experience for work could be an amazing opportunity for skill-building you won’t wanna pass up, but again…”unpaid” is unfortunately the name of the game when it comes to international internships. Even if you do get paid a small wage or have a living stipend, you’re not gonna be flush with cash.

The money you raise will go towards your basic needs and their costs first: airfare, visa, passport, materials for community service or study, accommodation, and any program fees associated with your journey. 

How much can you raise?

april ludgate time is money money is pizza gif

Pizza, or meaningful travel.

People use FundMTravel to raise all kinds of cash money, so really anything is possible. Some of the most successful campaigns set goals between $300 and $10,000, and even exceeded their goal amounts. Key point: they exceeded their goals. 

An average gap year costs about $5,000, while study abroad programs can range from $15,000 to $36,000 depending on where you go and how long you stay. Volunteering abroad also requires a chunk of change, but it varies greatly depending on the program, flights, visas, etc. But you’ll probably want to raise a few thousand just in case. 

It’s important to remember that you don’t need to rely on FundMyTravel for all of your funds. Study abroad scholarships and other financial aid options can support those higher ticket travel experiences. 

The reality of travel, studying, or volunteering abroad is bookended with dolla dolla bills, so you have to be able to set those rose-colored glasses down for a hot sec and do some grunt work in money land. But don’t worry — we’re here to walk you through it.

A comprehensive fundraising plan for 2020

January – April 

person’s feet silhouetted by fireworks

Your New Year’s Resolution: create a comprehensive fundraising plan.

1. January is the perfect time to start something, anything, that will create positive change in your life. You’ll be making some resolutions that actually pay off by creating a fundraising plan for your life-changing travel endeavours/dreams/goals! Start grinding out the details and layout your very own 12 month fundraising plan.

First, RESEARCH! Find the answers to some basic questions to get you going on the right track for a kick ass fundraising plan. Example: 

  • What is the cost of your program?
  • How much is airfare?
  • How much is a visa?
  • How much is housing?
  • How much do you need for additional experiences/fun activities?

Organize this data in a spreadsheet and calculate your total cost. Now, you can choose to make this your fundraising goal, or you can use some of your own savings to supplement the total cost, or maybe plan on some scholarships. But you should end the month with a fundraising goal. 

2. By February you can start digging deep.To have a successful campaign, you need a good story. Why are you passionate about this travel experience? What are you hoping to gain, give, or create while abroad? Define your “ask”, and start brainstorming the best way to tell people about your goals.

After that, start a list of potential ways to extend your story throughout your campaign. Will you create videos, design a logo, make a Facebook page, or host any events? Do you want to provide incentives along the trail? If so, what kinds of trinkets, mentions, etc. are in your wheelhouse? This part should be a little messy. Dump all of your ideas onto a piece of paper (physical or digital, live your own life), and then start narrowing your scope.

Use FundMyTravel’s fundraising resources to reach your goal faster → 

3. March is when you start creating a strategic fundraising plan.Now that you have a monetary goal and story set in stone, get into major organization mode. Pull up your spreadsheets and get cracking! 

Determine your start and end date and figure out how you’ll gain traction (based on February’s brainstorming sesh). We created this fundraising plan example around a three-month-long campaign, but you can always adjust depending on your goals/needs. Planning your campaign launch around an event is a great way to hype people up and spread the word about your travel quickly!

Create a calendar for sharing updates on social, hosting events, etc. This can be tedious, but you’ll thank your future self once the campaign is up and running. Take the time to lay out a plan for EVERY. DAMN. DAY of the campaign.

Create a spreadsheet to stay organized and hold yourself accountable. What day will you send out your letters? When will you post updates? What platforms will you use? When will your videos go live?

[Related: 17 Tips for Sharing Your FundMyTravel Campaign]

4. April is your creative month.Take all that brainstorming and monotonous scheduling and turn it into something fun! Write your fundraising letter and any other letters you’re planning on sending out during the campaign.

Focus on preparing the materials you need for the social calendar you just created. Write copy for posts, organize pictures you’ll upload, choose gifs, make a video, etc. Put the actual words (hashtags, gratitude, etc.) in the spreadsheet so that when it comes time to execute it’ll just be a simple copy + paste. 

Four months may seem like a long time to prep, but you’d be surprised by the time it takes to do all this planning, especially if you’re working or in school. By the end of April, you should be ready to launch your campaign. 

May – July 

person standing in front of the ocean during summer

Don’t let summer shift your attention away from your strategic fundraising plan. Eye on the prize!

Mayday Mayday — we have a FMT campaign about to blow up! By May, the only emergency landing you need to worry about is your FundMyTravel landing page. Since you took the time to plan everything out, we’re sure the campaign will be SO HOT.

zoolander so hot right now gif

This campaign is SO HOT right now.

You did all the leg work at the beginning of the year, so the actual launch and maintenance should be smooth sailing. If you follow this 12 month fundraising plan, your actual campaign will only last about three months. Having a semi-short campaign helps create a sense of urgency with donors, and it gives you the option of running a second campaign or extending your end date right away if needed.

5. Create your FMT account and launch your campaign at the beginning of May. Don’t worry if you don’t get it up and running May 1st on the dot. You’ve already done the heavy lifting by prepping materials, crafting stories, and creating social media calendars in the beginning of the year. Having a comprehensive fundraising plan really pays off at this point, because you get to take a little bit of a breather and watch all your hard work fall into place.

Lean into that social calendar you made to stay on top of sharing updates and responding to people on Facebook, Twitter, etc. Update your posts daily without being spammy, and encourage others to share to spread the word! If you planned on hosting any additional fundraising events, make sure they actually happen. 

6. June is your mid-year mark, so it’s a good time to reflect on the work you’ve done so far. What is going well? What is more difficult than you expected? Are you going to meet your fundraising goal by July?

The benefits of creating a 12 month fundraising plan is it gives you time to lay everything out in a very intentional way, so take advantage of the time you give yourself to assess how things are working (or not).

Remember, you can always adjust the monetary goals and deadlines as your campaign goes, so don’t freak out if the stars aren’t totally aligned by June. And if they are aligned? You can continue to receive funds as long as your campaign is open, even after the goal is met! 

7. By July, your campaign should be wrapping up. Cue celebration mode! Hopefully all your hard work paid off, and you’re getting PAID.

August – September

person throwing leaves into the air

Crispy leaves will mean you’re nearing the end of your campaign — get ready to harvest your rewards.

Every comprehensive fundraising plan needs to allocate time to do the things you’re raising money for!

8. Come August, you should have all the money raised for your trip. So what are you waiting for? Sign-up or register for the experience, and share with the people who got you there. Buy your ticket, nail down housing, and get totally pumped for your trip.

If you create a killer strategic fundraising plan, this part should be super straightforward. You’ve already done all the research — you know exactly what you need to pay for and how much. This is merely the execution.

9. You can use September to tend to any last-minute items or tasks that got away from you during the fundraising bonanza. It’s also a cushion to make that final push to reach your fundraising goal. Sneak in an extra bake sale, send a final Facebook call to action, or start a 24-hour pledge drive. Tie up your loose ends with a nice little bow and off you go!

October – December

10. October is a great time to start to follow up with your homies who donated.Did your comprehensive fundraising plan include gifts, songs, art? Figure out who you need to send things to and start creating your donor gifts. 

11. Don’t forget about the fundraising process in November and December. Even though the campaign is over, your story lives on. People invested in your journey, so find ways to keep them updated.

Successful strategic fundraising plans extend the narrative beyond the actual fundraising campaign, so think about how you can continue to share your story. At this point, send out the thanks and the gifts to the wonderful people who got you to the finish line.

Oh you should also take a hot minute to CHILL OUT. You’ve worked hard, and you deserve to bask in the glow of your expertly executed 12 month fundraising campaign. 

Start off 2020 right with your 12 month fundraising plan

person standing in road in hawaii

This reminds us of you, after your fundraising campaign pays off!

FundMyTravel is the perfect tool for your strategic fundraising plan. Finding ways to make a difference in the world through travel is one of the most magical things a person can do for themselves and the world, so we want to provide you with as many resources as we can to help you fund that meaningful travel experience. 

We hope this fundraising plan example gave you some great ideas, and challenge you take it and run. What’s YOUR 12 month fundraising plan?

Get the latest tips and tricks to create a killer strategic fundraising plan. Sign up for the FMT newsletter!

6 Companies to Ask for Donations to Jumpstart Your Campaign

Love it or hate it, money is what makes the world go ‘round. That’s not the only thing, of course, but it’s an unforgettable piece to this complicated puzzle that we live in. Someone once said, “a wise person should have money in their head, but not in their heart.” There’s no doubt that your non-profit is run in a wise manner, and everyone involved most likely has a warm heart, but your NGO must have money in the membrane if you’ve found yourself on this article!

crumpled euros

Having a list of companies that donate to fundraisers will make life a LOT easier.

But money in the brain isn’t going to get you and your non-profit very far. What’s better is when there’s money in your brain and in the organization’s hands. But you’re tied up keeping the day-to-day activities going, balancing your books, conducting outreach, and treading water as you maintain membership relations.

Chances are, you already applied for grants and sent out letters and e-mails seeking donations, but have you considered (drum roll please)…corporate fundraising? Corporate fundraising can be an effective way to get that money more than in your head, but equally important, into the account of your NGO.

While your organization might be well-versed in sending members out knocking on all neighbors’ doors, and calling everyone in the phone book to sell candles, cookie dough, and other potentially useful things, there are more effective ways to manage your time to serve your purpose. And if you’re a registered 501(c)(3), you’re in luck!

Why approach companies to ask for donations?

In both corporate and small business America, there are so many companies that give donations to nonprofits. More and more, there are companies willing to donate to fundraisers for a number of causes — it’s what’s often referred to as corporate giving. Who knows, maybe your cause might be exactly what a big (or small) company is interested in donating to. It never hurts to ask!

people in a meeting

Hit that fundraising goal more quickly!

Rather than asking everyone and their cousin, why not start off with a handy list of companies that donate to fundraisers? Seemingly obvious, right? According to Double the Donation’s Research, 65% of Fortune 500 companies offer a matching gift program. Bingo!

Maximize your time and go directly to the (financial) source while waiting for your money tree to mature. You might have a check or two in the mail before you know it. Look to those in your closest circle. Do any of them work for a Fortune 500 company? This might be the best place to start.

Side note: Many companies willing to donate to fundraisers will only donate to nonprofits. It will be easiest to obtain legitimate funds if you’re working with a registered NGO. Whether travel-related or not, fundraising can help you reach some of them #goals! Remember that you can’t do everything today, but you can take one small step in the fundraising direction.

Here are some of the best companies to ask for donations in search of funds for your NGO or non-profit:

6 best companies willing to donate to fundraisers

1. Oriental Trading Company

Recognized as one of the Top 50 Internet Retailers and one of the Top 50 Catalog Companies, the Oriental Trading Company supports nonprofits in the spheres of education, youth, healthcare, and human services — that should cover many bases! Wondering about your eligibility? Your organization must have a current tax exempt status as a 501(c)(3). Submit a request (see below) and you should have a response within four weeks. Boom!

How can I contact them? Request a donation online through their portal here.

2. Google Dot Org

Googles charitable arm gives back to local, national, and global communities. Each year, this organization donates more than $100 million in grants and over $1 billion in products. Applicants can apply for seed funding for entrepreneurial projects in developing countries, along with community grants and disaster relief support. As it’s Google, they also provide funds to help boost online traffic with what they call Google Ad Grants.

How can I contact them? Check out Google.org or simply click here.

3. Disney

Another one of the best companies to ask for donations is Disney’s Corporate Philanthropy Program. Committed to building stronger communities and social responsibility, Disney Programs provides grants geared towards children and families totaling over $332 million a year. They support children around the world and also are known to donate books…at numbers in the millions. They have many of their own initiatives but also might be able to help with yours too. 

How can I contact them? Contact the Walt Disney Company here

4. CVS

The CVS Health Foundation is a private foundation that awards grants for education, healthcare, and local community involvement efforts. These non-profit grants are available by invitation only so it might be best to reach out to understand how you might get an invitation. Otherwise, CVS Health provides strategic investments to nonprofit partners across the U.S. from projects that strive to increase access to healthcare for underserved populations to youth prevention programming.

How can I contact them? Have a look at CVS Health to learn more about corporate social responsibility funding projects.

5. Starbucks

Starbucks’ Corporate Philanthropy Program has been alive and thriving for some years now. Founded in 1997, the Starbucks Foundation has given millions of USDs in the form of grants to nonprofits. But not only that! Whether your project involves community service, opportunities for youth, or college achievement, this coffee company might be able to help. Check with your local retailer to find out if they have a donation budget. NGO or not, they are bound to fork over some funds for your initiative. Here’s one of the companies that give donations to individuals.

How can I contact them? Stop in a retail location and ask for the manager; also check out the Starbucks Foundation website.

6. United Airlines

Does your fundraiser include travel expenses by air? Airlines are great companies to ask for donations from. Obvious, right? Well, United Airlines’ Grant Program offers in-kind donations in the form of airline transportation vouchers and cash support on a limited basis. Not concerned with airline transportation? They still might be able to help you out. They also offer cold hard cash support to nonprofits on a limited basis. You can also ask those around you to donate their MileagePlus miles to help you lighten your load. That international conference you’re interested in attending or representing your NGO at? They can help!

How can I contact them? Check out their corporate website to learn more. Most large companies and corporations have a unique process if you’re seeking funds on behalf of a 501(c)(3) organization.

Companies that give donations to individuals

Getting money as an individual (i.e. if you’re not a NGO) can be easy if you have the right people around you. Otherwise, approaching companies and the corporate world seeking funds for a project might be a bit more difficult. They might be concerned with your credibility; how do they really know X amount of money is going to Y project that you speak of?

It’s not a lost cause though, by any means. It might be worth it to reach out to local, family-owned stores in this case. You might be better off speaking with those who live, work, and support your community. Think lawyers and dentists, teachers, and doctors…you know, your current (or former) professionals that might be known to give a hand. Get your ideas together, have legitimate argumentation on-hand, and give it a shot.

Take your handy list of companies that donate to fundraisers, and start asking!

person holding cash in their hands

Don’t hesitate to reach out to companies willing to donate to fundraisers.

There’s not one best company to ask for donations. It depends on your situation; who you are, what it’s for, and how much you need to make the magic happen. While you’re at it, consider creating a FundMyTravel campaign to stimulate giving from your online community. It’s an easy and effective way to share your NGO’s funding goals with those around you.

Hit the pavement, those blank pages, and emails to start reaching out to your prospective donors. Presenting your non-profit’s project in-person can certainly add a more personalized element. Go introduce yourself and shake some hands. If some of these companies are not within a feasible proximity, consider making a call, sending a letter, or typing an email.

Take a moment, prepare yourself, and then start reaching out. Funding your next project doesn’t have to be a nightmare. It’s time to accept that mo’ money means less problems. When it’s all said and done, you’ll surely be saying, “Hey, that wasn’t so bad after all!”

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12 Festive Holiday-Themed Donation Incentive Ideas

While December may be the most popular time of year for giving, sometimes wanderlusters are in need of funds long before the joyful season begins. Maybe you’re looking to volunteer abroad for spring break, learn a language abroad for the summer, or study abroad in the fall? 

Additionally, many FundMyTravel campaigns only run for a few months to keep audiences interested while not going over any time limits, and December may not be in that time frame! 

jar of money sitting on wooden table

Festive donation incentive ideas aren’t limited to holidays in December. Get creative and rake in donations!

Many campaigners create a strong message for why they need funds to travel, and they can recruit the help of their network through social media, email, text messages, and other means. Asking may be enough to reach goals in many cases, but sometimes campaigners need extra help.

Lots of organizations use donation incentives to give their cause an extra boost, so why not you too? Elevate your FundMyTravel campaign with the 12 festive holiday-themed donation incentive ideas listed below!

Why are donation incentives a good idea?

Most people would like to feel appreciated in some manner when they donate. Incentives for donors not only encourage participation and provide motivation, but they also show how grateful you are for their contribution.

Donation incentives also help to raise excitement for your cause, and donors are more likely to share your campaign with others. The donation gifts don’t need to be grand or expensive—it’s more about recognizing their contribution. By taking advantage of the holiday during your campaign time frame, you can maximize your efforts while giving back in return!

5 Ideas to Make Your Travel Fundraising Campaign More Appealing to Donors

12 festive donation gifts for the holiday season

1. New Year’s Day — Personalized calendars 

fireworks in a dark sky over a town

New Year’s-themed donation gifts will start the year off right.

January is a time of celebrating opportunities ahead in the new year while appreciating good memories of the year before. A personalized calendar rises to this challenge. Ask each donor to send you 12 of their favorite photos, and you can use an online PDF template to assemble a fun calendar that looks good in black and white.

 

If that proves to be too challenging, you can find plenty of beautiful, free stock photos to use online on websites like Unsplash and Pixabay. When you’re done crafting your masterpiece, you can email donors the finished result for a calendar they can easily print at home and cherish all year.

2. Valentine’s Day — Gift card raffle

Celebrate love with a fun raffle! Everyone loves the chance to win something amazing. For every person who donates to your campaign, enroll them in a drawing to win a $50 gift card. The gift card can be for a common restaurant, a massage parlor, a theatre, or donor’s choice. At the end of your campaign, post a video of the drawing where you put everyone’s name in a basket and draw the winner!

3. St. Patrick’s Day — Win a treasure

Fill a glass container with lots of candies, which will be the symbolic “pot o’ gold” at the end of the rainbow. You can post a video of the filled container on your campaign page to give them a 3D viewing. For every person who donates, give them a chance to guess how many candies are in the container. The lucky winner who guesses the right amount will win the jar of candy!

4. Easter — Egg-filled surprise

Easter is a good time of year to provide a small incentive for every donor. Fill lots of plastic easter eggs with thank-you notes, mints, candies, keychains, and/or small toys or office supplies. Send a filled plastic Easter egg to each donor for an eggcellent surprise.

5. Mother’s Day — Breast cancer awareness

Moms love May because they get some recognition they deserve on Mother’s Day! For every donor who gives a certain amount to your campaign, commit to contributing a portion of their donation to an organization that fights against breast cancer—or any cause that your mom or maternal figures in your life are passionate about. Donors will be able to tell their mom that they donated in their mother’s name for a good cause.

6. Father’s Day — Choose dad’s gift

Every year, people struggle with choosing a gift for dad, right? To help them out, why not create personalized donation gifts? Donors will receive gifts for their dads based on the amount of money they contribute, and you can customize them. For example, BBQ aprons for $100 donations, mugs for $75, cozies for $50, keychains for $25, etc. You could also have another raffle for the winner’s dad to receive a box of donuts!

7. Independence Day — Virtual bake sale

person holding a sparkler

While you declare financial independence, don’t forget about incentives for donors!

Who doesn’t love a dessert that demonstrates America’s pride with stars and stripes and red, white, and blue? Cookies and cupcakes are usually cheap to make or buy. You can work with local bakers or make the goods yourself for the campaign. For those who donate a certain amount ($100 or more), promise to make baked goods for them or for an organization of their choice (a nonprofit organization, senior care center, etc.).

8. National Dog Day (August 26th) / International Cat Day (August 8th) — Box of Treats

Invite all of your donors to submit the best picture of their cat or dog. At the end of your campaign, ask everyone to vote for the picture they like the most. The donor’s picture who receives the most votes wins a mystery box of treats for the pet! The mystery box could have things like toys, snacks, grooming items, a leash, and other things. You might even be able to get a few things for free at local pet stores if you mention it’s for a good cause.

9. Labor Day — Providing labor

One of the best incentives for donations is via labor for an organization. Choose a few local organizations or schools where you can volunteer. Reward every person who donates a certain amount (for example, $50) with a vote for the school or organizations where they want you to volunteer for a day. The one with the most votes wins your labor!

10. Halloween — Costume contest

If you’re up to this “spooktacular” challenge, you can provide a costume contest as a donation incentive. Choose three embarrassing costumes (that are cheap or easy to make) and ask each donor to vote on which costume you have to wear on Halloween; you can give donors a vote for every dollar they donate! Your friends and family will love this idea.

11. Thanksgiving — Cookbook

A good way to get people to donate even a small amount is the promise of a unique cookbook. Ask everyone who donates to your campaign to contribute their favorite recipe—it can be of their all time favorite food or of their favorite Thanksgiving dish. At the end of your campaign, you can create a PDF cookbook with all the recipes that people gave you, and distribute it to everyone who donated to your campaign.

12. Christmas — Postcard ornaments

Many people in your network would love to receive a postcard of the place you visited as a thank you for their donation. Why not create something special for them to put on the tree every year? You can customize the postcard with frames, embroidery, lamination, etc. and put a ribbon through the top. Each donor will have a special reminder every year of how they contributed to making your travel dreams come true.

7 Creative Donor Rewards Ideas

You’ll have happy holidays with these donation incentives!

two people drinking black coffee

If all else fails, say thanks with a seasonal cup of coffee. (#PSL)

While these donation incentive ideas are for the more popular holidays, you can also take advantage of fun and silly holidays throughout the year. (There would be some pretty creative incentives attached to Arbor Day and Earth Day, for example!) It’s also recommended to reach out to local companies for sponsorship or to gather free supplies for events if you need to minimize expenses. You’d be surprised at how many people you know have a business and would love to take advantage of the free advertising.

If you have skills in photography, carpentry, design, or anything else, you may be able to provide donation gifts with these talents. You can also provide incentives for donations by providing your time or labor for them. Plus, you could also host contests, tournaments, sales, and other events in person if possible and ask people to contribute to your FundMyTravel campaign. Many people also find that incentives for donors have helped them build relationships and surpass their campaign goals!

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Sydney LutzThis article was written by Sydney Lutz. Growing up as an “army brat,” Sydney could not help but develop a thirst for traveling. She has visited all 50 states as well as England, France, Canada, Germany, and Australia. Sydney graduated with a master’s degree in public communication and technology in Colorado, and taught abroad for a year in Quito, Ecuador. Her favorite things to do include studying Spanish, practicing yoga, and travel writing.

What’s the Best Day of the Week to Host a Fundraiser?

When organizing a fundraising event there are so many decisions to make, and it can sometimes seem overwhelming. But before you get too deep into planning, stop and take a moment to think about WHEN a good time would be to hold your fundraiser. It matters more than you’d think!

money, phone, and globe on a table top

Knowing the best day of the week to host a fundraiser will get you where you want to go!

Finding the best day of the week to host an event can make or break how successful your event is. With a little tweak to the timing, your event could go from raising some money, to raising enough money to meet your fundraising target. But what is the best day for fundraising?

There are seven to choose from and everyday can be a fundraising possibility, but some days are better than others. Find out how to make sure your timing doesn’t become an obstacle to making your fundraising successful. (Then take it one step further and think about the best time of year to host a fundraiser!)

What to know about the best day for fundraising

The best day of the week to host a fundraiser depends a lot on your target audience. Workers, families, and college students all have very different schedules! So think carefully about whom you want to attend, and especially when they will be able to attend.

Also, check to make sure there are no similar events being held around the same time, or other events that your target audience will want to attend. For example, spaghetti dinners and pancake breakfasts are common fundraising events for high school and college students — so investigate whether or not someone else or another organization is hosting one on the same day as you.

Pauly D awkward gif

That would be…

Weekends will get you the most attendance, but hosting a fundraiser during the day in the week is always a possibility too. However, keep in mind that not everyone will be able to attend…people have jobs, after all. If you know a good amount of people will still be able to come to your fundraiser (maybe it’s not the traditional 9-5 crowd!), then weekdays are a great choice; weekdays are less busy, venues will have availability, and people want interesting things to attend.

Which is the best day of the week to host an event?

1. Monday—★

Monday evenings are the doldrums for fundraising events; it is the worst possible choice. No one likes to go back to work after the weekend, and by the time Monday evening rolls round people are often grumpy and tired. Most people won’t be in a good enough mood to want to dig deep into their pockets.

However, don’t give up hope! Organizing an event on a Monday evening can still work; venues will be cheap, there will be little competition, and if you know your event is desirable you can still persuade an audience to come and make a dent in your fundraising target.

2. Tuesday—★

It will take a little less persuading than Monday evening to get people there, but think carefully about the type of fundraising event you will be hosting. A relaxed event with lots of food will be easier to get good attendance for rather than a party or gala that doesn’t start until 9:00 p.m. or later.

3. Wednesday—★★

By Wednesday people have got back into the working swing and are ready to enjoy themselves. Venues, caterers, and the entertainment service industry often offer midweek discounts on their products, meaning your event budget can go further, and your profits will be higher!

4. Thursday—★★★

Thursday evening is just a slightly better choice than Wednesday. The 9-5 crowd is ready for some relief from work, looking for time to catch up with friends, and are feeling generous and ready for the weekend. A Happy Hour fundraiser would probably see great success during a Thursday evening! People tend to have more availability (or, at least, flexibility) during the weeknights, so you don’t need to worry about other events clashing with your fundraising event.

5. Friday—★★★

Friday evening is the start of the weekend, so it may seem like the best time to persuade people to leave their homes and come to your event. However, often after a long and hard week, people just want to relax; alternatively, younger people (college students and high schoolers) book up their Friday evenings quickly.

rebecca black friday gif

You know what day it is! (The best day of the week to host a fundraiser, maybe.)

What that means is people either won’t come in the first place, or will only come for a short time — and neither is good news for your fundraising target. If you do decide to hold an event on a Friday evening, think about what your audience wants: to relax, to recover, and to have fun.

6. Saturday—★★★★★

Saturday is the most popular day and night of the week to hold fundraising events. Most people have free time on Saturdays, meaning they won’t just drop by your event but actually participate. They want to relax and enjoy themselves, and they are more generous with time and money knowing there is still another day of no work ahead of them.

However, Saturdays are also very busy and can get booked up far in advance, so getting your target audience to come may be a problem if you’re not prompt enough with invitations and RSVPs. You will also need to book a location far in advance, as you will be competing with weddings, birthdays, and other fundraisers for locations. This means organizing an event on short notice or with a small budget may experience additional difficulties!

7. Sunday—★★★★

Sunday is a great option for holding fundraising events during the day, but is not a good choice for events in the evening. By Sunday evening, most people want to stay home and relax a tiny bit more before a busy week begins. However, if your event ends before 4:00 or 5:00 p.m. you’ll be golden! During the day, people are more likely to still want to make the most of their weekend and be out and about.

Sunday is also a great day for family events. Parents want to spend time with their children, but also enjoy not having to organize entertainment for them. Take the work out of entertaining the children at your fundraiser, and families will flock to attend.

With FundMyTravel, EVERY day is the best day for fundraising

FundMyTravel is here to help make sure your meaningful travel (or fundraising) dreams come true. FundMyTravel is an online fundraising platform designed to support everyone raise funds for meaningful travel-related projects, whether domestic or international. It is easy-to-use, social media ready, and will provide you with support throughout your fundraising process to help make your fundraisers successful. The fundraising toolkit will help you reach out to your networks and a wider audience, and help those donations start rolling in.

The best day of the week to host a fundraiser will show you the money!

bills of various currencies

Knowing the best day for fundraising will help you reach your goals, no matter what they may be.

So which day is the best day for fundraising? It all depends on you and your fundraiser!  Everyday is a fundraising possibility, and everyday has the potential to be the best day of the week to host a fundraiser. So get thinking, get creative, and start planning your fundraising journey.

When you have decided on the best day of the week to host an event, check out more of our resources on Fundraising 101. And don’t forget that social media can be used anytime to promote your event — get some inspiration on how to utilize your social media campaign.

Sign up for the FundMyTravel Newsletter for more tips and tricks to help make your fundraising as successful as possible!

rachel taylorThis article was written by Rachel Taylor. After moving to Malaysia, Rachel caught the travel bug and hasn’t been back to the UK since. Her travels have taken her via Europe, East and Southern Africa, and Asia. She is currently settled in northeast China, where she is hoping one day to hold a conversation in Chinese not about the weather.

How to Ask for Donations Over the Phone + 3 Easy Scripts

We are huge fans of fundraising in the digital age. You can get your mission out there, en masse, in a matter of seconds, by setting up a FundMyTravel page, sending an email, or posting on social media. When bringing in moolah is the goal, there’s nothing better than reaching as many people as possible with the least possible effort (life’s busy enough, you know?). Still… there’s something to be said for a good old fashioned phone call.

rotary phone next to sofa

We said old fashioned, not ancient. Make sure your phone script asking for donations is fresher than this!

Asking for donations over the phone can sound intimidating, but in all reality, it’s one of the best ways to know you’re being heard. That one-on-one time with someone gives you room to explain all your key points, and it gives that person the opportunity to ask questions that they might skim over by only seeing your post online.

We get it — most of us swapped phone calls for texting about 10 years ago, making fundraising phone calls feel even more awkward, unnatural, or nerve-wracking. Snagging that donation through an interpersonal connection can be huge, though, so we’ve compiled some tips and tricks on how to ask for donations over the phone.

5 tips for asking for donations over the phone

1. Have a clear mission

This is big in fundraising no matter what, but especially when asking for donations over the phone. You don’t want to be that person asking for money with no clear explanation as to why. 

Don’t start your fundraising journey by having a vague idea of studying in Argentina over the summer; however, do start your fundraising journey by choosing a city, a program, and budgeting costs. It’s important for contributors to feel that they’re giving to something important, so don’t lose their funding by going in unprepared!

The more evidence you can give for how beneficial their funding would be, the more convincing you are. Plus, it’ll make for a smoother, more enjoyable phone chat for both of you.  

2. Know your audience

Fundraising phone calls do not (we repeat: do NOT) have to be awkward. They can sometimes even be fun! Are you reconnecting with a family member or friend? Maybe you’re reaching out to a previous teacher or employer. They’d probably love to hear how you’re doing, what you’ve been up to, and how much their support would mean to you.

Maybe you’re calling up some of your parents’ friends, or your friends’ parents. Ask how they are! Tell them how your parents are doing, ask how their kids are. The point is, be personable. Nobody wants to answer the phone only to feel like they’re being solicited. Show your personality, and let them know that you put consideration into choosing to reach out to them directly.

[Related: How to Ask People to Donate Money—The Nice Way]

3. Think through questions ahead of time

person holding coffee cup and cell phone

No judgement if you need to caffeinate before fundraising phone calls.

This can be one of the most frightening parts of talking on the phone, no matter what the conversation is about. Whether you’re interviewing for a job, talking to your student loan provider, checking in for a doctor’s appointment — being asked questions over the phone that you’re unprepared for can be flat-out uncomfortable.

Don’t get stuck in a situation where someone’s interested in your mission and you can’t fill in all their questions. Think about what you would ask a fundraiser over the phone, and prepare those answers. What will you be doing? For how long? With whom? Why? Is it safe? These questions can sound a bit grueling, but trust us, it’ll be worth it to avoid the awkward phone silence.

4. Practice never hurt nobody 

There is absolutely nothing wrong with writing down, word for word, what you plan to say. There is absolutely nothing wrong with standing in front of your mirror and rehearsing that fundraising phone call script, for hours if you need to!

Practice with your mom or a friend, if that’ll help make your tone more fluid. Whatever it takes to get you feeling comfortable is exactly what it takes to make the most of your conversation and do the best you can by your campaign. 

5. Be confident

Here’s the thing — anyone can be a successful salesperson. As long as they’re confident in what they’re selling, others are going to be confident about getting on board. Each of these steps certainly matter; plan to know your information before you put it out there, and always, always be polite on your fundraising phone calls.

But beyond that, the heart of how to ask for donations over the phone is being excited and sure of what you’re doing, and your donors will feel that. In the beginning, it might feel unnatural. You know what they say — fake it ‘till you make it. After all, you’ve got money on the line!

[Related: 6 Steps to Fundraising for Meaningful Travel]

Line please? 3 fundraising phone call scripts

A phone script asking for donations won’t necessarily feel like the most natural thing to start writing, so we’ve got you started with a few options that you can transform into your own.

  1. Hi <name>, this is <name> from <reason you know each other>. Do you have a few minutes to talk? I’d love to share a bit about my fundraising campaign with you. I first got interested in this topic due to <insert event>, and since that time, I’ve dedicated myself in <x> ways to pursue this field. I’ve done my research, selected a program, and feel confident about what I can get out of this experience. All that being said, saving the money for this journey has come with some challenges! I’m reaching out today to you, someone who has always been generous in your support of me, to see if you’d consider contributing to my campaign.

 

  1. Hello <name>! I know it’s been a while since we’ve been in touch, and I’m eager to hear about how you’ve been, and excited to share an upcoming opportunity in my own life with you. If you have a few minutes, I’d love to tell you about the journey I’ve been on, and humbly ask you for your support in my endeavors.

 

  1. I’m calling today with a business proposition. As someone who’s always been interested in <XYZ> and supportive of <XYZ>, I’m hoping I’ll be able to win you over in support of my upcoming fundraising campaign. If now is an ok time, I’d like to share some of my ideas with you, and make a case for why this is an excellent endeavor to be a part of.

Use FundMyTravel and avoid fundraising phone calls completely!

We’re a fan of how personable and direct fundraising phone calls can be — but hey, they’re not for everybody! If you know you’re just not interested in picking up the phone and dialing, then get started on your FundMyTravel page!

Crowdfunding dedicated to getting abroad — for volunteer work, schooling, studies, or even just travel — has never been easier through this free, user-friendly, easy-to-share resource. Get to creating your campaign, start sharing your mission with the public, bring in that money, and get yourself on your life-changing journey abroad.

Get your script ready for asking for donations over the phone!

person holding cellphone

With these tips and a solid fundraising phone call script, you’ll be set.

You’ve got this! Now that you (hopefully!) have some bolstered confidence, you’re ready to start detailing out your phone script asking for donations. The first step is to compile a list of all the people you’ll reach out to. It’s a good idea to have the bones of your script in place, and then add some details and personal touches, depending on who you’re contacting.

Once you get started sharing your passions and ideas, hearing that positive feedback of a supportive human on the other end of the call is going to give you a rush you’ll want to repeat! Good luck — you’ve got our backing all the way.

Sign Up for the FundMyTravel Newsletter for More Fundraising Tips!

samantha harperThis article was written by Samantha Harper. Samantha’s quest to learn about her family heritage in Prague ignited the travel flame within her. A Wisconsin native and Pitt alumna, Samantha’s insatiable appetite for the world led her into an International Relations master’s program in Italy. Still not feeling like she’d seen enough, she finagled her way into spending a summer in Spain and teaching for a year in Thailand. She is (temporarily) settled in Washington, D.C.

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