Marketing peer-to-peer fundraisers is so important! But your marketing projects can easily be overshadowed by all the other tasks that go into planning and running a peer-to-peer event. If you want a quick refresh on how peer-to-peer works, this article will help you! Once you’ve got a solid grasp on the fundraising style and have an idea of how you’ll run your event, it’s time to start building a marketing plan.
In this article, we’ll go over 3 strategies you can use to start spreading the word about your upcoming peer-to-peer event. If you’re a Qgiv user, keep an eye out for tips on how to apply these tactics to your Qgiv account!
Make your peer-to-peer event shareable
Make your event shareable! And when I say “shareable,” I don’t just mean “easy for people to actually share by pressing a button.”
Shareable content is content that captures peoples’ attention and moves them emotionally. Think about the videos, images, and text posts you see floating around Facebook or other social channels. What common denominators do they possess? What makes people share them?
When you’re building your peer-to-peer event, make it shareable by building emotion and inspiration into the fabric of the event itself. Try:
- Helping people visualize the difference they can make by participating. Either center your activities on raising money for a particular project (like this organization did when they held a peer-to-peer event to raise money for an accessible playground) or by relating the dollars you raise to tangible outcomes in the community.
- Using powerful images that connect viewers to your cause. We know that images are some of the most compelling tools you have in your fundraising arsenal. When you build your event page, include a photo gallery to highlight your event and the impact it makes. Include pictures of people having fun, happy photos of the people who benefit from your fundraiser, and any other images you can include that will get people excited about participating in your event. People are more likely to share a great mission or story when it’s accompanied by an equally great visual!
- Encouraging people to share their own stories. You don’t have to write every story your nonprofit uses! Some of the most compelling fundraising stories are ones your supporters and clients can tell. Do you have a participant who’s benefited from your work? Ask them to share their story! Did you help connect a neglected pooch to a forever family? Ask them to get involved! Those stories are great materials for blog posts, videos, social posts… get creative with them!
Shareable content is eye-catching, emotional, and inspires people to make a difference. If you can build great visuals, powerful emotions, and simple ways for people to get involved, you’ve got shareable content!
Build a community of ambassadors
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: one of the best ways to build momentum early in a peer-to-peer campaign is to have a small group of dedicated participants engaged at the start of the event. There are a few reasons this is the case but, for this article, we’ll focus on one benefit: you’re looking for marketing ideas, and ambassadors will market your event for you.
Now, this is important: even though your ambassadors will market your event for you, this still requires strategy and planning.
The first step is to identify people who are passionate about your cause and would be willing to participate in your event. Look to regular donors, volunteers, board members, or even people who regularly interact with you on social media. What you’re looking for here is someone who is excited about your work and is willing to raise money and awareness for your organization. Ask them if they’re willing to participate and tell them why you think they’d be a good fit. Then, ask if they’d be willing to get involved early to help build some momentum for your campaign. Get a group established.
Then, it’s time to equip your ambassadors with the right knowledge and tools to spread the word about your event. Some resources you’ll want to provide them include:
- Some simple training on your peer-to-peer fundraising platform. If they’ve never participated in an event like this before, they’ll probably want help learning the ropes. You can show them how to update their pages, change their profile pictures, share social posts… or you can give them a platform that walks them through the process of learning to use their fundraising tools (cough, Qgiv). They’ll be more likely to actively raise money and awareness for you if they actually know how to use the tools!
- Storytelling resources. Help them identify stories they can tell when sharing your event. Why are they passionate about the work you do? What inspired them to get involved with your organization? Those stories will be the backbone of their appeals… and they’re great resources for you, too.
- Templates for emails and social posts. Your peer-to-peer participants aren’t professional fundraisers, and they probably don’t know all the best practices and fundraising tactics that you do. Giving them templates they can customize to suit their personal tone and audiences is helpful! Asking friends and families for support can be nerve-wracking. Giving them a place to start can help eliminate a lot of the anxiety your participants may feel as they start making appeals.
- A point person. Let your participants know exactly who they can talk to if they have questions or get stuck. That person will serve as their cheerleader, advocate, and representative to your staff. Participants who need help will be more likely to reach out for assistance if they know exactly who to contact!
Having a group of supporters that helps market your event is so important! They can reach whole networks of people who may never have heard of you. Give your participants the tools they need to spread the word and watch them change the world.
Create a social media plan
Peer-to-peer fundraising, at its core, is a social endeavor. Use social media to its fullest power!
I know, I know, it’s easier said than done. That’s why having a solid social media plan before your event launches is key to keeping up your social media promotions even when you’re knee-deep in other tasks.
Before your event really gets going, take a little while to sit down and plan out a social media calendar. What do you want to share, and when do you want to share it? Some types of posts you’ll want to plan on making include:
- Teaser posts. Before you launch your event and start processing registrations, spend some time getting people excited about your event. Show them pictures of people at past events having a blast. Explain why people should get involved. Get people hyped!
- Recruitment posts. Once your event is live and ready to go, share it with your audiences! At this point in the game, many people will be aware of the upcoming event and the basic reasons they may want to participate. You’ll probably want to make this type of post periodically, especially in the early days of registration.
- Progress posts. Celebrate important milestones with your participants and donors! When you reach certain percentages of your fundraising goal, when you hit interesting recruitment numbers, or when you hit significant dollar amounts, make a post to celebrate!
- Participant spotlights. Show your participants some love and inspire people to stay involved by highlighting people who have done a remarkable job raising money and awareness for your cause. You’ll want to have their permission before you post about them, of course.
- Countdown posts. These are especially effective if you’re very close to your fundraising goal or nearing the day of the event. Creating a sense of urgency is a tried-and-true fundraising strategy, and it applies to peer-to-peer fundraising!
Once you’ve got a social media calendar built, schedule out what posts you’re able to write in advance. Not all posts can be automated, of course, but many can be! If you know you want to post 3 days before the event to push for last-minute donations, why not go ahead and schedule it out? It’ll be one less task to complete in the last-minute crush before the event! For posts that you can’t schedule in advance, you’ll still have a solid plan. Having that plan will be important when you’re busy; you won’t even have to think about what to post to your social channels each day!
Marketing a peer-to-peer event is a lot of work! But, by focusing on making your event shareable, equipping dedicated ambassadors so they can spread the word, and creating a social media plan before event planning gets crazy are three big steps that help make marketing as simple as possible.
Want to learn more about peer-to-peer fundraising and how Qgiv can help you succeed? We want to talk! Ask us for a one-on-one demo of our peer-to-peer platform. We’ll learn about your goals, talk to you about your event, and show you exactly how we can help you make your event a success.