For years, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) have had a great impact on society, especially those residing in developing countries. Often times, the governments of developing countries’ hands are tied due to the lack of funds. Thus, NGOs from all over the world have developed the habit of stepping in to provide support for the public and help them live a better life. To do that and remain in operation, NGOs, just like corporations or for-profit organizations will need funds. The methods NGOs use to acquire funds, however, can differ from for-profit organizations.
Apart from applying for grants and seeking to gain exposure to catch donations, NGO can use the following methods:
1 – Email marketing
Given that email today is widely used as a form of communication, and that a great number of philanthropists who give funds for NGOs accept applications through email, it’s no secret that email has been an effective mode of communication. Although the chances of people responding to your email may be low, email marketing will help you to reach a big crowd. Email marketing has been proven to source out the best leads (Mimaroglu, 2018). Though not everyone will respond, this is also a way to make people remember you, so your NGOs name will ring a bell whenever needed.
For upcoming events and activities, perhaps sending email invitations can be effective. People nowadays check their emails more often than noticing the posters they see in places they go to. Through ending emails, you can also reach out to people more effectively as you have the capabilities to make your messages appear more, unlike if you were to use a poster. Hence, reading about your event can even encourage them to do research on your NGO and its causes.
2 – Adapting to the latest trends
Trends inevitably come and go. The most popular toys, fashion statements, gadgets, movies, may no longer be popular in just a span of a week. However, the most effective way to get in touch with the masses is through the channels they enjoy, even for just a period of time.
The use of social media has been very effective in terms of informing people that your NGO is one with the cause they support, the items they enjoy, etc. In some way, people will feel that you are no different from them. You too enjoy the same things they do, and with this sense of belonging, many individuals will be more inclined to get to know you more.
An example of an online trend NGOs around the world have optimized is the #GivingTuesday hashtag. This hashtag began as right after Thanksgiving in the United States, where there are big shopping sales celebrated as Black Friday and Cyber Monday right after. The idea to dedicate Tuesdays to donating to NGOs has been successful and the hashtag has reached a huge crowd. Not getting involved with this trend would’ve left your NGO behind others who have gained exposure and additional supporters.
3 – Showing appreciation to your donors
The purpose individuals and organizations have for donating is not for recognition, but for the betterment of their chosen beneficiaries. Hence, those who donate funds for NGOs in developing countries do not expect anything but results in the communities who’re supposed to be aided. But somehow, making them feel special for the good they have is necessary. Your donors should know that you don’t forget about them or take credit for all the work you do in a particular community. Sending an email message and constantly updating your donors on the progress you have been making through their donations will make your donors want to keep supporting your various causes.
In showing appreciation to your donors, you should also be very careful about what you do. Try not to spend just to show them your appreciation because this might just give them the idea that a portion of their donations goes to gift-giving instead of directly to the beneficiaries.
4 – Online platforms
Given that technology is rising day by day, might as well make the most out of it. Having a website is imperative in all organizations and having a “donate now” button will help increase the number of donors NGOs have. However, to encourage donors to donate funds, also make sure that your website is informative and encouraging to your readers. Gone are the days when the most efficient way to reach people is through phone calls or printed posters. In fact, internet fundraising has already grown by 13 percent last 2015 (Ironpaper, 2015). Also according to Iropaper, the average amount people give online is USD 19. With at least 13 percent more, your organization is bound to gain more funds with small investments in online platforms.
There are many ways to generate funds and donations from donors but once success is garnered and many have been donating, this shouldn’t stop NGOs from applying for grants and crafting proposals which will help gain partners and inevitably help more communities.