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How Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Fits Into Your Strategic Plan

by Cary Schwartz

If you’ve been in the nonprofit sector for a while, you’ve likely heard about the benefits of hosting peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns. Asking your supporters to raise money on your behalf not only provides a revenue-generating opportunity for your organization, but it also offers a new engagement opportunity for your most dedicated supporters.

With peer-to-peer fundraising, your organization reaches out to dedicated supporters or ambassadors for your cause and invites them to create dedicated donation pages on behalf of your mission. These individuals then, in turn, reach out to their networks of friends and followers to ask for donations.

Because peer-to-peer fundraising offers so many benefits for nonprofit organizations, it’s become a staple within the modern state of fundraising. However, to get the most out of this type of fundraising campaign, your organization needs to understand how peer-to-peer fundraising plays into your organization’s overall strategic plan.

In this guide, we’ll discuss the part that your next peer-to-peer fundraising campaign can play in your strategic plan. Specifically, we’ll talk about how peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns can assist you in:


Funding New Projects


Acquiring New Donors


Engaging Your Current Supporters


Promoting Upcoming Events

Understanding what you want to accomplish with your peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns and the part you want them to play in your strategic plan will help you set and reach your fundraising goals more effectively.

1. Funding New Projects

Canada moneyUnderstanding how much money you need to raise in order to accomplish your goals is the first step to running a successful peer-to-peer fundraising campaign. This is especially true if your primary purpose for hosting the fundraiser is to raise as much money as possible for a specific project.

When you understand what your goal is and how much money you need to raise to bring your vision to life, you can then determine how many people you should ask to become peer-to-peer fundraisers and advise them on setting their individual fundraising goals.

For example, let’s say you work at a dog shelter. You’ve reviewed your organization’s strategic plan and determined that you will use a peer-to-peer campaign to fund a new program to socialize new animals. Now you need to figure out how much money it will take to fund the program (let’s say $10,000) and set goals for your campaign based on that number. You might decide to recruit 10 well-connected ambassadors for your cause and ask them each to raise $1,000 to meet your goal.

2. Acquiring New Donors

sustained donation

People want to support their friends and family members and the causes that mean the most to them. That’s why they’ll donate to a friend’s peer-to-peer fundraising page even if they’re not familiar with your organization.

The beauty of peer-to-peer fundraising is that this type of campaign spreads the word about your cause to new individuals. These individuals may then become invested in your cause beyond that first initial show of support for their friend.

That’s why peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns can be an effective way to acquire new supporters. After your peer-to-peer fundraising campaign comes to an end, reach back out to the new donors who gave to your cause to educate them about your mission and invite them to get involved in other ways.

In your emails, provide some specific next steps for them. These can include:

  • Attending an event. If your peer-to-peer fundraising campaign is tied to a specific event, ask your new supporters to attend it! On the donation confirmation page, give them the option to register to attend your event either in person or virtually.
  • Sharing that they donated on their social media accounts. Look for peer-to-peer fundraising pages with social sharing buttons. This provides even more marketing opportunities and further engages new supporters.
  • Subscribing to your newsletter. After people give to your cause, they’ll want to know how the funds are being used to support your mission. Tell them that they can keep up with your campaign and with your organization’s other initiatives by subscribing to your newsletter. Then send them email updates about how you’re using their donations to move your mission forward.
In your first welcome email to these supporters, remind them about your mission and thank them for the impact they’ve already made by donating. Then, invite them to get even more involved.

3. Engaging Your Current Supporters

Peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns offer your nonprofit the opportunity to engage your current supporters and deepen their relationship with your cause—which is crucial to raising your donor retention rate.

You can provide a better experience for these fundraisers by:

  • Inviting them to share their connection to your cause. As supporters create their own fundraising pages to share with their network of friends and family, invite them to share their connection to your cause. This reminds them of their emotional investment in your cause and draws the attention of people who care about the fundraiser.
  • Providing tips for success throughout the campaign. Don’t simply recruit your dedicated supporters then leave them high and dry once your campaign begins. Keep in touch with them throughout the campaign and provide tips on how they can reach their personal fundraising goals.
  • Showing your appreciation after the campaign ends. After the campaign ends, follow up and show your appreciation for your peer-to-peer fundraisers.
When you engage your current supporters, they’ll be more likely to stick around for the long haul, increasing both the amount of money they’ll contribute to your cause over the course of their lifetime and your nonprofit’s donor retention rate.

4. Promoting Upcoming Events

Upcoming EventsOften, nonprofits tie their peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns to events, driving supporters to both donate to the campaign and attend the event. Leveraging this opportunity is especially impactful when your nonprofit is hosting a virtual or hybrid event.

Bloomerang’s hybrid fundraising event guide explains how you can segment your donors and target the ones who you think will be interested in attending your event. We recommend using segmentation and your peer-to-peer campaign to promote your upcoming events by:

  • Choosing a dedicated segment of supporters with a great network of followers to create peer-to-peer fundraising pages. Be sure to include information about the event on the campaign page. Then, when donors give, they’ll also learn about your event and how they can attend it.
  • Creating a segment of peer-to-peer campaign donors and then inviting them to your event. Include a link to attend the event directly on the donation confirmation page. Follow up with those who sign up with additional information about the event and follow up with those who don’t sign up with an additional invitation.
  • Reaching out to a segment of supporters who have participated in peer-to-peer campaigns in the past and inviting them to your event. Those who have volunteered to raise money on your behalf or given to peer-to-peer campaigns in the past have shown dedication to your cause and would be likely to attend an event if given the opportunity. Use the data you currently have about your supporters to craft personalized invitations for these groups.

Your event is also a great venue for thanking your supporters so build in time to acknowledge them during the event. You can even name your top fundraisers and share how their donations impacted your mission.

Peer-to-peer fundraising is a valuable tool for nonprofits—and not just when it comes to hitting a fundraising goal. When your organization recognizes these other benefits and focuses on them as a way to better achieve your organization’s goals, you’ll be better positioned to host a more effective fundraising campaign.

Think about your organization’s goals and how peer-to-peer fundraising can help achieve them. Then, plan your fundraising campaigns to target those goals so that you can surpass them.

Happy fundraising!

Learn more about how Charity Dynamics can help Peer-to-Peer Fundraising fit into your strategic plan