Mini-drives: Creating a Super Boost in Your Fundraising

Fundraising
August 22, 2018

A quick campaign drive can give a boost of energy to your fundraising during a time where things may have slowed down. A mini-drive is just like adding The Flash to your team, a super speedy teammate to rush in and help you reach your goal.

 

What is a mini-drive?

Mini-drives are short and quick pushes for money. Their main purpose is to create a deadline (real or artificial) to establish urgency for donors. They also help donors understand how they fit into your overall campaign and see a direct impact for their gift.

Successful drives have two things: 1) a specific goal – for example, a specific dollar amount, number of contributions, or number of donors; and 2) a hard deadline. Often these drives will also include specific items the campaign or organization is raising money for: an event, materials, etc…

Mini-drives are also public, grassroots efforts with email and social media being great ways to help you meet your goal. You should use all the tools available to you: social media, phone calls, meetings, email, etc… to help you; just be sure to always mention the deadline, goal, and how much progress you’ve made towards it.

Consistency is key in these email campaigns. You want to keep your name at the top of the inbox. The second email usually has the highest open rate and a few more consistent emails after that means you are not forgotten. We also don’t want to burn out your contacts so we don’t want to send too many and we want to keep the emails relevant to your readers.

 

Here are five email outlines you should follow for an Email Campaign. At the bottom of the post, you can find email templates already written for you. 

 

1. Launch of Drive

This first part of the drive is like sending out the bat-signal to call on your fellow superheroes to come to your aid.

What are you raising money for? Pick something specific to help donors visualize what you’re working towards; whether it be posters and mailers for media or musical instruments for your nonprofit, let your supporters know why you need their support.

What is your goal? Let them know what your goal is; you need a clear and specific goal to help track progress and help donor visualization.

What is your timeline? This not only helps you to have a focal point to work towards but it helps to give your donors that sense of urgency. You can then send out notices and reminders of your drive up to that date.

 

2. Email Forwards

Forwards can feel more personal and can allow you to reach more people. There are a few ways to go about using forwards.

Fake Forward

A fake forward means you take your “Launch of Drive Email” and make it look like a forward but still send it to your email list. The best way to do this is to obtain permission from someone whose name has recognition amongst your list and use their name and email to send your forward.

Real Forward

Gather together your board, your advisors, friends and family, or whoever your main team is. Have those people all forward your email to their group of people. This reaches people you may not have been able to and can bring in new names to add to your fans and followers.

 

3. Progress Update

How much money have you raised and how much more do you still need to raise? Let people know where you are at in the process;

A progress update gives people a reminder that you are still there. You still need their help for your mini-drive as well as giving them a reminder about your campaign. For those who have already donated, it can help them see where their contribution got you or encourage them to give a little more.

 

4. Almost There

Let people know how close you are to your goal and give one final push. Remind them of the deadline and how there is only a short amount of time left to hit that goal. Let them know that you need their help and without them, you cannot do it. 

Have you already hit your goal? Celebrate! Thank those who have already helped and set a new goal.

 

5. Thank You/Success

Thank people for the donations and/or the success of the drive! You cannot do what you do without the help of all those around you.  

These people want  to hear about how they helped contribute to your success, they want to know that their contribution made an impact, so keep them informed and continuously update them on your progress, even after the mini-drive is over.

 

Copy, paste, and modify these email templates to get your mini-drive going!

Labor-day Mini-drive Email Templates

Matt Lyon
Matt’s experience includes overseeing up to fourteen staff members, administering budgets exceeding $1.1 million annually, directing million dollar paid media programs, raising over $5 million for various causes and organizations, and developing and implementing communications strategies that led to dozens of stories in local and national outlets, including the New York Times and Washington Post.
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