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You’ve got a great idea for a fundraising event. You’ve started planning all the event details and now it’s time to go public. But how do you attract the right attendees and donors to make it really successful? And how do you keep them engaged during and promote your cause after the event?

Leave it to marketing automation to help you.

What is marketing automation?

Marketing automation is done by using software to set up automated processes around marketing to and engaging with your donors and members. It starts by integrating the software with your website, email, and social media platforms to create strategies that engage with customers, donors, and members to drive revenue and goals.

A popular example of what this looks like is Amazon. When a customer views a product on Amazon, their visit and interactions on the website will be tracked. If they become a member or order something from the online marketplace, they’ll enter into a system and become a lead or customer (aka converting).

From there Amazon’s software will send automated and personalized emails to the lead based on items they viewed or purchased.

Amazon can also target them on social media and personalize the website when the customer or lead returns. This process educates the customer on the company, nurtures the relationship, engages them with new opportunities, and helps turn them into a promoter of the brand.

How can it help my nonprofit?

Don’t worry if your nonprofit is a long ways from automating like Amazon: there are still marketing automation tactics that you can start to consider. Imagine you create a campaign that focuses on peer-to-peer fundraising. A new potential fundraiser visits your website after hearing about your efforts in their community. Your website displays information about your new peer-to-peer fundraising campaign and they decide to sign up.

This is where marketing automation comes into play. After signing up, the marketing automation software tags them as a new prospect. You can see their sign up information in the system and what pages they view each time they return to your website. Soon after they sign up, they begin receiving a series of helpful emails you’ve created beforehand.

As you have their information, you also target and engage them on social media platforms where they can spread your message. Finally, they finish fundraising and hit their goal. Your software sends them a thank you email and asks them to follow your organization on social media.

You’ve created a campaign that engages them throughout the process and keeps them talking about your message long after it ends. Now, you not only have a loyal advocate but lots of data to help you analyze your campaign and optimize your message for the next one.

Let’s run through what this marketing automation setup looks like.

Integrate into your website

Here’s how you can integrate marketing automation into your website:

  • Calls to Action
  • Landing Pages
  • Forms
  • Thank You Pages

Setting up some basic marketing automation within your website can be simple depending on the platform you use. Most website platforms (like Weebly or SquareSpace) and content management systems (like WordPress or Drupal) will have some sort of option for creating calls to action, landing pages, thank you pages, and tracking users.

I recommend doing some research into your website builder’s marketing tool options. There are a lot of free apps and plugins, but they will require a little technical knowledge to install and set up.

Now let’s see how marketing automation can be set up to help you run a successful campaign.

First, a user visits your website and lands on the homepage. They see that the main large image on your website is promoting a fundraiser using peer-to-peer practices. They want to learn more so they click on a “Learn More” button (aka a call-to-action button) that you’ve created.

Next, they are sent to a page with a form that discusses the fundraiser. This type of web page is known as a landing page. You’ve included great photos, videos, and content so they can learn more about the fundraiser and cause.

They see a form on the side and decide to sign up to raise money. This form collects basic information including an email address and is set up with an email marketing platform like MailChimp to start automated processes to send emails to new participants.

After submitting their information, they are directed to a Thank You page. This page not only says “Thanks” for their participation, but it also links to a few helpful resources on your site to get them started on promoting your cause and raising money.

Personalize your emails

Let’s break down how you can personalize your emails with marketing automation:

  • Setting up the workflow
  • Personalizing content
  • Make it mobile-friendly

You’ve now got their email address from the signup form on your website. The form was connected to an email marketing platform, like Mailchimp, Emma, or Constant Contact. They were added to what’s known as a workflow, or a process of tasks, that you’ve set up in the email tool for anyone signing up using the form. The workflow will automate sending them emails every few days or weeks.

As the series of emails go out, they include information such as a thank you for signing up, tips to start talking about the cause, how to ask for donations, and links to share the campaign via social media.

To achieve a higher open rate on the emails and to engage your new fundraisers, you add in personalization. Personalization is when you use personal information in a mass email. You can do this easily by adding in a special code that you can find within the email marketing platform. The most common personalization is personalizing a subject line or introduction of an email to display the first name of the email owner.

Lastly, the majority of emails are read on mobile, especially personal emails. You use a mobile-friendly template from the email platform so anything you send will be easy to read. With today’s attention spans being shorter, you keep each email concise. You send the emails to yourself and a few colleagues before you send them to your campaigners to make sure they work on different devices and achieve the tone of your organization.

Engage on social media

You can use marketing automation to engage donors on social media by doing the following:

  • Create an event
  • Use a hashtag
  • Schedule posts

You’ve got all your website pages and email workflows set up. Now it’s time to go live and create a Facebook event. The same message is on your social media sites as the landing page on your website. Plus all social sites displaying this fundraiser include a link to your landing page to sign up to fundraise, especially the Facebook event.

Now you log into a social media scheduling tool, like Hootsuite, Buffer, and SproutSocial, to schedule social media posts. These tools allow you to craft messages and schedule them to be posted automatically at a later date and time.

Before you plan and create any posts for all your social media sites, you create a fun and easy hashtag. You track this hashtag within the scheduling tool so you stay up to date when fundraisers post about your campaign.

Now you schedule all your posts using the same message, videos, and pictures from your website’s campaign landing page. You start out with announcement posts and then engaging posts about fundraising, and finally, countdown posts with tips to get those final pledges on the last days.

Pre-scheduling all your content has just freed you up to engage more in the community and raise more awareness about your fundraiser. Make sure to drive all social posts to a consistent landing page so that you can give people a chance to engage further with you.

Analyze and Optimize

Marketing automation can help analyze and optimize your data by answering these questions:

  • How many people viewed your landing page vs. signed up?
  • Were your emails opened?
  • How many people engaged on social media?

Finally, your campaign fundraiser has ended. You’ve hit all your goals and your fundraisers are excited. The day after your campaign ends you scheduled an email to go out to everyone thanking them for their hard work.

Now you can finally sit down, but you’ve still got some work to do. Don’t worry, analyzing your campaigns can be done from your couch.

First, you’ll take a look at your website traffic to the landing page you created. Did the call to action on your homepage send a lot of people to your landing page? How many people saw the landing page and filled out the form? How many did not? These are good questions to ask when analyzing how well your campaign performed on your website.

Next, you view your email platform to see how many participants received and opened your emails. Did the emails with personalization increase open rates? How many people clicked on the fundraising tips articles you sent? What articles were most popular? Knowing what engaged your campaigners the best will be helpful in your next campaign.

Finally, you look at all the pre-scheduled social media posts. Which posts got the most likes? Shares? Comments? Were there types of posts that engaged better than others, like posts with photos of participants vs. posts of articles? Make a note on what people engaged with the most and keep those types of posts in your social media schedule.

Get Started

As you can see, integrating marketing automation into your nonprofit’s fundraising campaign can greatly increase engagement with your fundraisers.

Make sure you set up the right pages and forms on your website to collect information from your participants easily. Using software for email marketing and social media posting can save you time when in the thick of the campaign. Sending out pre-scheduled emails and posts can drive engagement and funds. Just make sure to analyze it after it’s all done so you can see what worked best and use it again!

For more information on marketing automation and solutions for nonprofits check out our blog.

This article was brought in collaboration with Jacqueline Fassett, Marketing Coordinator at Idealist Consulting. Thank you for this valuable contribution to our blog!

Jacqueline Fassett brings us this helpful guide about marketing automation!

Idealist Consulting helps nonprofits and small businesses make an impact with their technology solutions. As Marketing Coordinator, Jacqueline helps educate nonprofits and small businesses on Salesforce, marketing automation, and CRM applications.




Start a Booster to supplement your marketing automation.


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Updated: August 14th, 2017

With donor data, payment processing, and marketing, your nonprofit has a lot of information to keep up with in order to fundraise successfully.

Luckily, there is a way to stay organized and make fundraising easier for your nonprofit.

The solution: nonprofit software. 

Nonprofit software can help you manage every part of your fundraising so that you can stay on top of your fundraising goals.

We’ll look at different ways software can make a difference. The seven areas we will cover include:

  1. Crowdfunding
  2. CRM and donor databases
  3. Online donation software
  4. Payment processing
  5. Prospect research
  6. Email marketing
  7. Matching gifts

Keep reading to learn more!


1. Crowdfunding.

Crowdfunding uses social media and your donors’ support to rally funds for your nonprofit. It’s a great way to spread the word about your cause and gain new supporters.

However, to create a campaign, you’ll need to find a platform. Let’s take a look at three different ones you can use.



A. Booster

About the platform:

Booster is a unique, risk-free crowdfunding platform that allows nonprofits to raise funds by selling T-shirts. With Booster, you can design and sell up to five different products or color variations for your campaign.

Additionally, their fundraising pages have built-in social sharing buttons so that donors can easily share your campaign with their network. 

Why we love it:

Booster is great for fundraising events like walkathons because when donors receive their t-shirt, they are effectively spreading the word about your cause. Every time they wear it, they are sharing your cause with everyone that sees!

The price:

Booster makes it easy for any nonprofit to set up a campaign. There are no setup costs or any fees to design your T-shirts. You will pay 2.8% of the total funds you raise as part of the payment process fee.

If you’re interested in learning more about Booster, you can check us out here.




B. Fundly

About the platform:

Fundly is a versatile crowdfunding platform for individuals and nonprofits.

Social sharing is a key feature on Fundly’s fundraising pages. Every crowdfunding page has buttons where supporters can share your campaign to their networks. That way, supporters can spread the word about your campaign.

In addition to their sharing options, Fundly offers mobile-responsive pages and a mobile app so that supporters can access your campaign on the go. Mobile features make it easier for donors to give, which can help you raise even more funds.

Why we love it:

Fundly isn’t just a crowdfunding platform; they offer even more services like CRM software and a volunteer management platform.

The price:

Fundly has a 4.9% platform fee. Additionally, your nonprofit will have to pay a 2.9% processing fee plus $0.30 per transaction.

Find out more information on Fundly here.





C. Generosity

About the platform:

Generosity is a crowdfunding platform created by Indiegogo, a large crowdfunding website that accepts any kind of campaign.

If you’re looking for a site that focuses on raising money for philanthropic causes then Generosity is a good choice. All you have to do is tell your story, upload an image, and you are ready to start raising funds.

Why we love it:

Generosity is a fundraising platform for socially minded causes, so your nonprofit will fit right in! Plus, it’s backed up with the support of a much larger crowdfunding platform.

The price:

To use Generosity, your nonprofit won’t have to pay any platform fees. However, the payment processor does charge 3% plus $0.30 per transaction.

You can learn more about Generosity here.



2. CRMs and donor databases

CRMs and donor databases help keep all your fundraising information in one place. When you have everything centralized, you can save time. You won’t have to search for information on different software to get the full picture. Everything will be in one place that you can easily refer to.

Additionally, these valuable tools can give you a well-rounded understanding of your current fundraising so that you can plan accordingly.

In this section, we’ll cover three different tools you can use.


A. Salsa

About the tool:

Salsa offers a wide variety of tools to help you manage and track your fundraising. With Salsa, you can accept online donations, improve donor retention, and potentially increase your average gift size.

With Salsa’s donor management feature, you can create profiles for all your supporters.

Additionally, you can run reports on various campaigns to help you make critical decisions and improve future campaigns.

Why we love it:

Salsa’s all-in-one fundraising software can handle anything from donation pages to analysis. That way, you can collect the information donors provide on the donation pages you create. You won’t have to transfer any of your information to a different software.

The price:

Salsa’s online fundraising tool costs $179 a month. If your nonprofit wants the complete fundraising CRM, it’ll cost $214 every month.

Learn more about what Salsa has to offer.




B. Little Green Light

About the tool:

Little Green Light is a web-based fundraising tool that helps nonprofits manage donor information and fundraising strategies.

Your nonprofit can manage fundraising events by tracking RSVPs, attendance, and guest names. Plus, Little Green Light integrates with other software so that you can link up with your email marketing software and payment processor.

Why we love it:

Little Green Light is an online-based tool that doesn’t require your nonprofit to download any software. You can also give access to as many users as you want.

The price:

The cost to use Little Green Light will depend on the number of supporters you want to track. For example, if you track 10,000 donors, your nonprofit will pay $59 a month or $637 annually. Additionally, you’ll have to pay processing fees if you want to use their donation forms. You can get more detailed information on pricing here.

If you want to learn more about Little Green Light, check out their website.




C. Neon

About the tool:

With Neon, your nonprofit can create pages such as surveys, membership forms, or fundraising campaigns. All the information that you collect from these pages goes into your Neon CRM database for future use.

Why we love it:

Neon is a full-service CRM that can help your nonprofit design your website and create a fundraising strategy.

The price:

Neon has plans that range from $50 to $200 a month.

What more information about Neon? You can learn more here. 



3. Online donation software

Online donation software helps your nonprofit accept donations in a way that’s convenient for your donors. With this software, you can be more conscious of your donors’ preferences and create forms that keep supporters on the page until they confirm their contribution.

We’ll cover three different software providers that offer online donation software.


A. Qgiv

About the software:

Qgiv offers easy-to-use, customizable donation pages for nonprofits, faith-based, and political organizations.

When you create a donation page, you have full control over the layout and design. That way, you can create a page that is consistent with your nonprofit’s brand.

In addition to accepting online gifts, Qgiv allows donors to register for events, memberships and so much more on the donation forms you create.

Why we love it:

Qgiv’s software is easy to use. You won’t have to learn HTML or CSS code to create a fully customized form.

The price:

To create unlimited donation form, you won’t have to pay a monthly fee. You’ll just pay a processing fee of 3.95% plus $0.30 per transaction. If you’re looking for customized donation pages or text-to-give, the price will start at $49 a month. For more information on Qgiv’s pricing, look here.

Find more information about Qgiv here.




B. 4aGoodCause

About the software:

4aGoodCause offers your nonprofit many mobile donation solutions to make the process simple even on the go. Your nonprofit has no limitations on the number of donation pages you can create.

With 4aGoodCause, the information donors use to fill out the form can be collected and stored in your donor database (if you have one).

You can also track your pages’ success. For instance, you can see how many people landed on your page and ended up completed the form.

Why we love it:

Donors can share their gift with their network on social media. Having a feature like this will help donors spread the word about your campaign.

The price:

The price for 4aGoodCause plan starts out at $49 plus $0.49 per transaction. Your nonprofit will have to pay additional fees if you want more features like text-to-give.

Click here if you want to learn more about 4aGoodCause.



4. Payment Processing

Although, it’s a process that’s not often thought about, payment processing is critical if you want to raise funds online. In fact, one of the concerns donors have about making online donations is security.

Having a secure payment processor is important because it makes sure that your donors’ information stays safe.


A. iATS Payments

About the payment processor:

iATS Payments is a PCI-compliant payment processor that helps you process credit, debit, and ACH payments.

In addition to security measures like tokenization and PCI compliance, iATS works one-on-one with your nonprofit to establish the level of fraud protection that you need.

Why we love it:

iATS is a secure payment processor that works exclusively with nonprofits.


iATS offers competitive pricing, but it varies depending on your nonprofit’s needs.

If you want to learn more about iATS Payments, click here.




B. PayPal

About the payment processor:

PayPal is one of the most widely used payment processors for individuals, businesses, and even nonprofits. Aside from accepting online donations through their website, PayPal also features a mobile app where you can accept contributions.

Why we love it:

PayPal offers solutions specifically geared towards nonprofits including integrations with popular nonprofit CRMs and crowdfunding platforms.


The great thing about PayPal is that they offer lower processing fees for nonprofits. Your nonprofit can expect to pay 2.2% plus $0.30 per transaction.

Learn more about PayPal here.



5. Prospect Research

Prospect research is what helps you gain a deeper understanding of your donors. The insights you learn from prospect research can help you create better fundraising campaigns and help you improve your outreach.


A. DonorSearch

About the tool:

DonorSearch can help learn more about your potential donors and your current donors so that you can gain knowledge on their personal backgrounds, giving history, and much more.

They deliver all the results through their easy-to-use platform.

Why we love it:

DonorSearch provides more than just general prospect research; they also provide wealth screenings so that you can find potential major gift supporters.

The price:

If you’re interested in DonorSearch, their pricing will depend on the services you need. Contact them for more information.

You can learn more about DonorSearch here.





About the tool: uses social media listening to help you find out more about your donors. You can listen to what donors are saying about your nonprofit and gain more insights into their interests and preferences.

Why we love it: integrates with many CRMs so that any new information you learn about donors can be linked and transferred to your current donors’ profiles.

The price:

The beauty of is that you can start their services for free. Of course, you’ll have limited features, so if you want more insights, they have plans ranging anywhere from $255 to $450 a month.

Find more about how can help your nonprofit here.



6. Email marketing software

Email marketing software can help automate your outreach so that you can effectively engage with donors. With a simpler way to interact with donors, you can create more communications and improve your stewardship strategies. 

Who knows? Improving your email communications might just convert your first-time donors into regular contributors!



A. MailChimp

About the software:

MailChimp helps you send out automated emails to your donors. With their tool, your nonprofit can create and design email messages. You can create different lists so that each donor receives a different and tailored message.

Why we love it:

With a list of features that includes tracking and analytics, you can keep a record of what email campaigns were successful and make changes to improve the ones that weren’t.

The price:

Even small nonprofits can start using MailChimp’s services. You can start for free.

If you’re a larger organization or want additional features, you’ll pay up to $199 a month for services.

If you want to learn more about MailChimp, click here.




B. Emma

About the software:

With Emma’s email marketing software, you can create targeted emails based on your supporters’ behaviors.

Their easy-to-use email design editor lets you drag and drop the elements you want to include in your emails.

Why we love it:

Emma offers flexible features for any nonprofit. You can design your emails without having any coding knowledge, or you can create customized layouts if someone on your staff knows HTML and CSS.

The price:

For small nonprofits, the price will start at $89 a month. If you have a larger organization, they have other plans that range from $369 to $770 a month.

Find more information on Emma here.



7. Matching gift services

With matching gift services, you have the potential to double your donations! Many supporters don’t realize that their employers offer programs where they will match donations made to nonprofits.

It’s up to you to educate donors about matching gifts and make it easy for them to learn about their employer’s program.

Matching gift services can help. We’ll cover two different services.



A. Double the Donation

About the service:

Double the donation helps make it easier for donors to search for their company’s matching gift program. They include features that you can add to your donation pages to inform donors about matching gifts.

They offer a tool that you can embed on your matching gift page and other web pages where donors can search for their company’s program.

Why we love it:

Double the Donation’s tools help donors get familiar with matching gifts. By providing them with a way to search for their company’s program during the donation process and wherever you mention matchings lets them understand how to submit a request after they give.


Double the Donation’s basic plan starts at $299 a month. If you want their premium plan that comes with more customization and integrations, it costs $499 a month.

If you want to learn more about Double the Donation, look here.




B. 360MatchPro

About the service:

360MatchPro automatically informs donors about matching gifts so you don’t have to spend a lot of time reminding them about their company’s program.

If donors fill out the donation form using their company email or search for their company matching gift program on the donation form, they will automatically get a reminder email with details on their company’s program and how to submit a matching gift request.

Why we love it:

Donors can receive specific reminders about their program so that they are more familiar with the process.

The price:

The cost will depend on your nonprofit’s needs. You can find out more here.

Your nonprofit can find out more about 360MatchPro here.


With these seven types of tools, you can improve your fundraising and potentially raise even more funds. Hopefully, you’ve found some software that can help you in your future fundraising.

Start a Booster to supplement your marketing automation.


Updated: June 28th, 2017

Determine if hosting an auction is right for your nonprofit.



Auction fundraisers can be highly rewarding events. Simplified to the basics: the fundraising organization seeks donated goods and services then offers the items up for auction to bidders. Auction fundraisers come in three types: live, silent, and online. Quite a bit of moving parts go into an auction fundraiser, but the good news is that lots of groups have been doing this for a long time which means there are also many resources.

Let’s answer the following questions:

  1. Should we run an auction fundraiser?
  2. What are the pros and cons to silent, live, or online auctions?
  3. What steps do we take to get an auction fundraiser started?
  4. How do we run the actual auction?

Deciding to run an auction requires some serious thought. It takes time and effort, but the rewards — both emotionally and financially — can be enormous. The buildup to the event gives ample opportunity to engage in conversation with supporters than plan to attend your fundraising event. Many groups find new and unique supporters just by shifting to an auction fundraiser.

Should you host an auction fundraiser.

1. Should we run an auction fundraiser?

Auctions increase awareness:

An auction is a great way to engage and interact with your current donor and potential future donor population. The purpose of the auction itself is to offer goods, services, and opportunities that are bid on by donors. The auction is an ideal vehicle to tell your hero story.

Auctions increase donations:

Items donated at auctions cost zero in terms of financial outlay. Companies large and small have marketing budgets, community support, and philanthropy budgets to help many types of organizations. Corporate goodwill is earned by businesses donating and participating in charitable giving.

Increase donor and supporter pool:

Auction events can be VERY inclusive, engaging stakeholders emotionally by offering unique or one-of-a-kind items that are of emotional or sentimental value. Many individuals only support financially if they receive something (of value) in return. Add an auction to a current event to increase awareness and fundraising potential.

Leverage locally:

Leverage the local awareness of brands for your cause. Promote the names of local donors to garner interest and momentum. Almost all professional sports teams donate to fundraising auctions. Many restaurants (national & local) donate, goods and services that are recognizable to draw in potential supporters, which can build your donor base.

Learn the different types of auctions you can host.

2. What type of auction shall we run, silent, live or online auctions?

Charity auctions provide a fun and interactive way to fundraise.

Philanthropy is easy when goods, services, and experiences are attractive and easy to bid on.

Three types of auctions prevail: silent, live, and online. When used on their own or in combination with another is the key to success. The bidding process itself lends energy and entertainment for the event whether online, silent, or live.

SILENT auctions are conducted at a location and bidding is silent:

Each attendee is assigned a bidder number, and uses that to record a bid on a bid sheet and therefore retains anonymity. Each auction item has a bid sheet placed in front of the goods and/or a display page. Donors bid silently on bid sheets until a set time. When time is called the bid sheets are collected and the highest bidder is the winner.

LIVE auctions are conducted by an emcee or auctioneer at an event:

Live auction tends to be pragmatic and useful for larger ticket items. Multiple bidders will need to have interest in the auction item to encourage the back and forth bidding activity. Live auctions do well when kept to no more than one hour.

ONLINE auctions can reach a much broader audience:

Online auctions add a layer of flexibility for both the auction itself and the the participants. Similar to traditional silent auctions there is a start time and end time, and the bidding process takes place completely online.

COMBINED auctions can be a good mix too:

Using multiple auction types can also lead to success. An online auction can be an appetizer to an upcoming event. An event based auction can include both a silent and live component.

Learn how to get started with your auction fundraiser.

3. What are the steps to get started?

Luckily you are not the first to ask this question. Resources are available to accelerate your auction IQ to genius quickly.

Auction organization is key:

A comprehensive auction auction program should be chosen to fit your needs. Look for one that includes features to organize the process from first donation to first receipt. Look for one that doesn’t have large performance and credit card fees.

Finding donations:

Create a nice procurement letter. A letter to “help the cause” such as enrich the students, fight the disease, feed the hungry, save the animals. Using action terminology makes the donor feel like part of the solution by simply donating goods or services. Promptly pick up donations and remember to send a thank-you note after the conclusion of the auction. There are lots of places to find online auction donation requests.

Go internal:

It’s amazing what shows up when you turn the procurement request internal. Friends, colleagues, and friends of friends are eager to help causes when the donation correlates with their interests. Have procurement letters on hand and ask people wherever you go. The BEST time to ask for donations is while you are making a purchase at an establishment. Have an auction website up and running DURING the procurement process. This leads to credibility, which will make your event an online resource to turn to for more information.

Pinterest boards:

Over 350 pins that link to vendors that donate to auctions. Everything from professional sports teams, entertainment and theme parks to restaurants and big box retailers.

Donation match:

DonationMatch is a matchmaking platform that streamlines how desirable items get in front of target audiences efficiently so both sides win.

Hype and brand the auction:

As the event date approaches, it’s time to promote the auction. A great way to promote the event is with one-of-a-kind, for-a-limited-time custom t-shirts. When those in the group see a super cool event branded t-shirt the 1st question is “Hey, where did you get that?” The t-shirt sale is a really creative way to engage your supporters. When the sale opens, share your fundraising page on your website and social streams. The best part is, Booster has awesome template designs that make it easy to customize. Create a single design or an entire collection.

Learn how to run an auction and post an auction assessment.

4. Running the Auction and Post Auction Assessment

Running the auction:

Running the auction is when all the planning activity becomes public and the auction ‘opens’. Silent auctions require bidders receiving bid numbers and making their bids silently on printed bid sheets. At the ‘close’ the bid sheets are gathered and final bidders are notified.

With a live auction, the activity is not quite so silent. The emcee announces and describes the auction item, asks for bids, and increases the increments till there is one final bidder. A spotter will be required to record the final bid information.

Online auctions let bidders remove the barrier to entry. No need for entrance tickets to the event so the donation dollars can go directly to the auction. The concept is the same except all bidding is done online. Outbid notifications encourage bidders to re-bid which is why the online auctions tend to run multiple days rather than a few hours.

Social media plays an integral part in all of our lives. It’s a simple transition to understand how this applies to fundraising as well. Do not be shy about posting to multiple social streams at least daily (and 2x on weekends). Post at different times of the day including early morning and late night. Be sure to post fresh information with a compelling photo. Instagram is the perfect avenue to tell your story with a picture.

Post auction:

After the auction concludes and the dust settles, it’s time to thank everyone involved in the auction. This means donors, bidders, volunteers, board members, and chairpersons. No matter if a person spent 5 minutes or 500 hours helping, a thank you is always in order. In the thank-you note share your success, remind them to stay connected.

Matching gifts:

Post auction is the appropriate time to remind bidders of matching gifts. Just in case you didn’t know, matching gifts are a type of corporate giving program that essentially doubles an employee’s contribution to a qualifying nonprofit organization. If the donation and your nonprofit are eligible for a matching gift, your organization will receive a check from your donor’s employer. Most matching gift programs will double an employee’s charitable contribution, but some offer matches at a 3:1 ratio, tripling the original donation! The biggest reason many donors don’t submit matching gift requests is that they simply don’t know that such programs exist. Double the Donation is the expert on this subject!

So should we, or shouldn’t we?

Auction fundraising lends to sharing and caring. Look at your audience and ask:

  • Would there be active bidders?
  • Can we energize with different auction offerings?
  • Will we be able to share the auction news efficiently with supporters?
  • Do we want to increase the depth of current supporters?
  • Do we want to increase the breadth of potential bidders and convert to supporters?

Auctions capture a different, unique, and uncommon audiences. This type of organic compassion widens the audience of the mission and vision for the charity or group.

Auctria makes silent, live, and online auctions powerful. Features galore organize the entire auction process from the first day of procurement to the last bidder receipt and everything in between.

No matter what combination or hybrid of auctions are used Auctria makes fundraising easy! Don’t be intimidated, use the expert advice, and remember- any additional funds generated are more than you had the day before!

Now that you've read these fundraising event resources, get started with our t-shirt fundraiser!


Updated: June 28th, 2017

If you’re looking for a cool way to promote your fundraiser on your website or blog, we’ve got just the thing – the campaign widget!

This widget is embeddable on virtually any website, so you can promote it in multiple places. And as you sell products and raise money, your widget will automatically update itself!

In order to embed your widget, go to your fundraiser page and click the Embed button.

Copy the code in the pop-up.

And either paste it into your website or blog HTML, or send the code to your web person for them to embed it.

Visitors who click on Support Now will be taken right to your fundraiser’s page where they can give their support.


Updated: June 28th, 2017

How to select the right product for your fundraising campaign:

Every organizer has different needs and goals for their booster. For some, the priority is to raise the most money possible for your cause, and the products you’re selling are somewhat secondary, and finding a good looking option with a great profit margin is the perfect fit. For others, the fundraising aspect of the campaign is important, but not at the expense of a great, soft, more premium product. We’re t-shirt experts at Booster, so we’d never recommend anything we don’t already have in our closets, but the hundreds of products available on our site do range from premium, to more generic, to everything in between.   

  •   Know your audience

No one knows your community better than you do, so ask yourself a few questions as you’re deciding what product is best for your group.

    • Do your supporters really need (or even want) a premium product, or will a standard cotton shirt work best? For many small groups and families, the product often takes a backseat to price, and a more standard t-shirt is the best way to keep the selling price low and the fundraising total high.
    • Will you need to offer a variety of sizes, colors, or styles on your booster? While the more standard, cotton t-shirts usually come in a wide variety of color and size options, and even have different sizes and styles available for women and children, trendier products aren’t always available in the same options.
      • **One thing every organizer should know** Did you know you can offer up to six different products on the same booster page, as long as they have the same design and can print together? We have actually found that boosters offering more than one product have a  ___% higher success rate than boosters only offering one product? It’s because your supporters are all different, and sometimes they want different things! If you’re raising money for a breast cancer charity, and want to show off your survivor pride loud and proud with a neon pink shirt, more power to you! But give the men in your life a more neutral option. If you’re raising money for a non-profit in Florida, but have family and friends in Minnesota, give those guys a hoodie option! Just make sure you’re pricing each item accordingly — more expensive items like sweatshirts and premium brands should have a higher selling price, while more standard t-shirts can be priced a bit lower.


  • How much are your supporters willing to spend and how much do you want to raise? The more premium the product, the more it costs, that’s just common sense right? What this means for your booster is that the more premium your product, the higher your selling price will have to be in order to have a reasonably low print minimum, and to guarantee the printing of your shirts. With a more standard item, you’ll have more flexibility with the price point of your shirts, and won’t have to charge as much to see that fundraising total start to climb.
  • Are you looking for something specific? Some groups are looking for something besides your run of the mill t-shirt, and we do have a lot of other fun options available. If you want to offer something besides apparel for your booster — maybe a hat or water bottle, you’ll want to utilize our expert Advisor team and make sure everything will be on schedule, since there are sometimes restrictions on these items.


  • Express yourself through color? If you’re planning to wear your booster shirts at an event like a walk or run, consider offering a few different options for your supporters, like a blended cotton or performance t-shirt. If you’re a student group, consider designing at least one of your shirt options in your school colors. A lot of charities and medical causes even have their own ribbon color, so if there’s a specific cause you’re focusing on, consider offering a few different shirt colors, a few neutrals, and one in the official color, so you can represent your cause! We can even change the color of the design from shirt to shirt, so your message will always stand out!


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