• Emmanuella Imo

5 Simple Steps In Setting Up An Online Fundraiser

An online fundraiser is a great way to curry financial support to hit your project goals as a nonprofit or social enterprise. Many nonprofits have gone ahead to create a sustainable impact in society simply by bypassing the rigour of an onsite fundraiser by leveraging the online platforms available. You too can do this, and we are here to teach you how to do it effectively. Are you ready? Let's jump right into it.

As we begin on this journey, there are a couple of elements of an onsite fundraiser that is worthy of note. This is just to help you understand the good you are about to be exposed to in this content.

1. You don't need to rent a venue.

2. You don't have to meet physically with your volunteers to assign roles

3. You don't have to pay for a photographer

4. You don't have to rent chairs

5. You don't have to worry about the logistics and welfare of participants since you aren't putting together an onsite fundraiser.

There are a lot of things you wouldn't need to worry about. The digital tools available in today's world have made it quite easy to start and run a successful fundraiser.

Although planning an online fundraiser does not require most of what is involved in planning an onsite event, there are some similarities that they both share. These include getting clear on your goals, setting up your team, coming up with your budget, and creating a plan and strategy.

Let's dive into simple methods you can use to set up your online fundraiser.

1. What is the goal of your fundraiser event?

How much do you want to raise from your virtual event? Who are you trying to reach? What do you need the fundraising to accomplish? How many persons do you need to reach to hit your goal? How much do you expect per donor?

The answers to these questions would help clarify the content of your sales copy and the calibre of people you would be reaching out to with your online fundraising event. It would also determine how much effort that needs to go into the publicity and promotion.

If your attendees are presented with enough information about your need for donations, they are more likely to support your project.

2. What kind of Fundraiser do you want?

Being clear on what your goals are, helps to clarify what kind of Fundraiser you need to put together to hit your goals. You have to decide the kind of Fundraiser you want to organize.

There are many possibilities for your online fundraising event, these include:

  • Are you considering a live-streamed speech and program?

  • Would you consider a video conference presentation with questions and answers about the project you need the donations for?

  • Perhaps you'd consider a behind the scene program where potential donors get to see the work you do.

Maybe you want to host a couple of your volunteers to share their experience working with the organization. This would help your potential donors to understand and experience the culture of your nonprofit. This would help them know, like and begin to trust your organization enough to give their resources to sponsor your project.

You could put up a meet up with your beneficiary and live-stream it for potential donors to see the impact you are creating in society. Do not forget that the kind of Fundraiser you choose should align with the kind of organization or projects that your organization executes. Another method would be to give out a digital product to those deciding to become a donor for your project. They could get a digital brochure or book.

3. What is the structure of your fundraiser event?

The structure here talks about timelines, processes and systems that must be put in place to execute the kind of event you have chosen. Because you have decided on the kind of event, it is easier to come up with these.

If you have chosen to give out a digital product to the donors, you should come up with a timeline for the event. Flyers should carry the relevant details about the event and when it is happening, the platform you are using (Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram, and others).

The registration process should redirect the registrants to join a Facebook Group. You could live-stream using ZOOM which would enable you to share your screen. You could also share directly with your Facebook Group. After sharing about your work, participants can expect to receive the digital product via the mail they registered with. You could have them make their contribution before gaining access to the digital product. It is very important to draw up a timeline that captures what should happen before the event, during the event, and after the event.

4. Who do you want on your team?

Working with a team is important in ensuring that you have an eye that is tasked with the success of each aspect of your fundraiser event. You could put out a call for volunteers. The kind of Fundraiser you have decided on would help decide the skills and quality of people you are looking to get on board. Publicity, Registration, Technical, Communications and Media, are key areas that these volunteers can handle for you to ensure a successful fundraiser event.

5. How are you going to publicize your fundraiser event?

Now you have gotten clear on your goals, decided on the kind of event you want to organize, and are sure of the structure, it is time to decide on the publicity strategy and begin getting potential donors onboard.

In publicizing your fundraiser event, there is some information that is very important to note in your publicity materials.


  • All materials should place emphasis on what kind of event it is - a virtual fundraiser.

  • Relevant links should be specified.

  • How to participate should be explained clearly without ambiguities.

  • The link to the donation page should be given prominence.

If you were able to get people to register to attend, it is important to send them emails or text messages a couple of times before the day of the event. The message should contain relevant information that helps to hit your fundraising goals.

5. Make sure to do a mock event

Doing a mock event helps to ensure that everything is working. You don't want to realize on the day of the online fundraiser that your ring light is bad. Or that your laptop needs to be fixed. Check every piece of equipment to make sure everything works.

If you are able to follow through with these steps, an online fundraiser should be an easy feat.

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