Not too long ago, we’d imagine charities as those children or volunteers with tin cans in hand or handing out flyers to invite crowds for a concert/ball/activity-for-a-cause nearby town. Fundraising before took a lot of effort, physical labor, printouts (which people usually ignored), and lots and lots of patience. With the way economic challenges have taken a toll on fundraisers, they need to find more creative ways to appeal to people’s assistance.
Today, it’s becoming easier to help a person, charity, or organisation and make an impact from anywhere across the world. With the power of social media, we are able to connect with people 24/7 and resolve and defend matters that are significant to the society’s progress. Since digital marketing took over the traditional advertising, fundraising is basically everywhere now — on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter– anywhere across the digital landscape, one can imagine.
A social media agency can make magic happen in a couple of weeks or months, that’s why more and more organisations are opting the digital way when raising funds and promoting advocacies. Here are some ways how social media is helping make the change for charities through online fundraising.
Helping Millions by Touching Billions
Social media has the power to amplify digital presence, that’s why it has helped transform the concept of modern fundraising.
Any person, organisation, or charity who has established fundraising way before the digital marketing era will definitely tell you that it is not easy to create and maintain a successful fundraising campaign, knowing that they cannot guarantee to obtain their target objectives: raising the specific amount of money, driving large groups of people to go to an event, or donating a large number of goods.
Aside from the uncertainty of hitting the target, offline advertising is quite expensive too. Imagine doing an on-ground event, publishing print ads, distributing flyers, putting up billboards, establishing partnerships (if any), doing direct mail, content syndication, or even going house-to-house. It’s like reaching out with major risks at hand.
But now, times have changed. By just creating a Facebook page for a charity and putting up great content to go along with your cause, your message can reach even billions of people worldwide. That’s a whole new level of life-changing convenience!
Changing the Future of Advocacy
Not too long ago, imagine these scenarios happening without the knowledge of many people: a mother unable to raise funds for her child who needs to undergo surgery, live killings and poaching of endangered animals, children and human trafficking, LGBT community rallying up on the streets, exploitation of human rights, and abuse of natural resources. Without the power of social media, these are things that people wouldn’t probably “ bat an eye”, in modern terms.
Before, standing up for different moral rights and civil issues and protecting something greater required immense resistance and effort — especially in a society divided by diverse beliefs and aren’t 100% acceptable on all kinds of causes. But today, major parts of the world have become more considerate and have become more open thanks to the power of social media.
A perfect example of one of the best online fundraising campaigns is WWF’s #LastSelfie campaign launched in 2014 which aimed to raise awareness among the Millennials and increase donations for endangered animals.
According to its website, “#LastSelfie is the creative utilisation of emerging social media platforms. The key to our campaign is using native “timed message” functionality to highlight that time is running out for endangered species while engaging millennials with the selfies phenomenon. Before disappearing, the image asked for help by sharing, adopting an animal, or donating through SMS.” In 3 days, they reached their monthly target and 1 week, 120 million users have seen their campaign. That’s the power of social media, folks.
Changing People Through Stories and Causes
Above all else, if there’s one result that social media did while changing the way fundraising works — it’s how people see the world today. From the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to provide donations for people with ALS to the No Makeup Selfie in order to raise money for cancer research, social media has not only helped change the lives of the fundraising beneficiaries but also the lives of many people who are completely unaware that such things exist.
Every story told behind fundraising campaigns lives to create a lasting impression and impact among us. More than just generating likes, comments, and shares, fundraising on social media has successfully changed the way people look at other people’s lives.