Raising money for animals in need seems like it would be an easy task. Most people see a picture of a sick dog or other animal and it triggers an immediate emotional response. However, fundraising for animal rescues is harder than you think. In fact, there are a few hurdles in animal fundraising you should be aware of. It can be a balancing act of sending different messages. Rescue organizations deal with the harsh reality of pet overpopulation while trying to maintain a clean and attractive environment for pet adoptions. And most time, organizations are on tight budgets with no staff to manage fundraising endeavors, only volunteers.
At GiveHope, we understand the challenges of animal rescue fundraising. These 5 tips will help your animal rescue fundraiser better, help you fundraise smarter and have the biggest impact on donors.
Develop your message
The main purpose for your fundraiser is to raise money for animals in need. Yet, there are so many ways you can go about sending this message. Don’t get lost in the weeds with your animal rescue fundraiser. From pet overpopulation, to puppy mills and community strays, to abused and neglected animals, housing issues, and affording veterinary care, fundraising for animal rescues can be overwhelming.
Start with why you’re raising money, the why helps people emotionally connect to the work the organization your fundraising for is doing. The truth is, people don’t care as much about what you do as why you do it.
Develop a fundraising plan
Once you figure out how much money you need to raise for your why, you need to figure out develop a fundraising plan. Now that you’ve aligned your goals and mission, it’s time to describe exactly what donations will be used for. You want your fundraising plan to be so detailed that even those outside of the development and fundraising world will be able to understand it. Think about both short-term and long-term goals. What can you focus on now and what fundraising tactic can you implement if your organization needs more funding?
The key to successful fundraising
Keep your audience in mind as you write your story. The goal is to spark feelings of empathy and compassion – creating a desire to join in your efforts to help the animals.
Keep in mind that “a picture is worth a thousand words.” Adding a good picture and graphics can make all the difference in conveying your message effectively.
Know yourself. This part is known as developing your case statement. What this means is putting together a written statement about your organization’s mission, or your personal one, and inspire the public to support your efforts. Your statement will form the foundation for your fundraiser.
Have information and materials available to backup your statements. Include a file of news clippings about your organization, statistics and information about the problem and your solution and a list of your accomplishments.
Include your mailing list
Your organization’s mailing list is your most valuable asset to use during your GiveHope fundraiser. These are people that have shown support for your cause in the past, and are usually likely to return and donate again. If you don’t have a mailing list, create one by going through a list of past supporters and previous records. If you are a new organization with few to none past supporters, you will need to understand the importance of sharing your fundraising page on multiple platform in order to get maximum exposure.
The forgotten fundraising tool
If there was a simple way to motivate people, to keep them interested, to make them feel involved and most importantly, make them returning donors, you’d gladly use it. Wouldn’t you?
Well, such a tool does exist – it’s a thank you note! A simple “thank you” can have magical powers. A thank you note is important in creating long-term relationships, both with volunteers and supporters. Whether people are donating their time or money to your cause, acknowledging their work is a big part in keeping them interested in your organization.