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The Pros and Cons of Online Fundraising

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Written by Paul Steinbrueck

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Online giving and social media have revolutionized fundraising for charities.

With online payment processors like PayPal, anyone with a credit card anywhere in the world is a potential contributor.  With social media tools like Facebook and Twitter, it’s possible for a charity to gain tens of thousands of online followers.  And those tens of thousands of followers have the capacity to spread the word about a campaign to millions of their followers.

We’ve written about several success stories over the years:

If you lead a church or charitable organization, it seems foolish not to be using social media, email and an online giving platform to maintain relationships with donors and connect with new donors.

If your church or nonprofit doesn’t support online giving yet, learn more about how you can setup online giving for free. All you need is a website with an SSL certificate for security.)

Donor Fatigue

The success of online fundraising, the low barrier to entry (any charity can set up PayPal, Facebook, and Twitter accounts for free in a minutes), and the growing number of people using social media, has led to an explosion in online giving campaigns and donation requests.

Hardly a day goes by when I don’t see at least one donation request on Facebook or Twitter.

If you genuinely care about people,  reading the donation requests, considering them, making a decision as to whether to give or not, and then accepting that decision can be stressful and lead to “donor fatigue.”

At some point, you begin coping with donor fatigue by closing your heart to the requests.  You read them, but don’t seriously consider them.  Or maybe you stop reading them.  Or maybe you stop following certain people/organizations who ask too often.

If you understand donation request fatigue as an individual, don’t perpetuate it as church, ministry, or non-profit.  This is another situation where…

Less is more!

Be strategic about when and how often you ask for donations.

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And whenever you ask for money, always remind people of your mission and how their gift will help to make that happen.

For more than 20 years OurChurch.Com has been helping churches and Christian organizations just like yours with building a Christian website, Christian website design and Christian SEO, we’d love to help you better live out your mission online.

Comment and discuss… Have you personally experienced “donor fatigue?”  If so, how do you feel about asking for financial support and being asked for financial support? How do you ask for financial support in a way it creates cheerful givers?

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    About the author

    Paul Steinbrueck

    Paul Steinbrueck is co-founder and CEO of OurChurch.Com, husband, father of 3, blogger. You can follow him on Twitter at @PaulSteinbrueck.