One of the questions we get asked the most by our partners is how to motivate volunteers. In reality, every successful fundraiser requires people to support it. And if you are doing peer-to-peer fundraising or the crowdsourcing of shoes, you want to make sure you have motivated volunteers. Sometimes what happens is that you have people who genuinely want to help, and so they sign up. However, when the time comes to get started on your fundraiser, it’s hard to get them going.
Still, other times, volunteers are roaring to go, but the organization does not know how to motivate volunteers and get them excited. Don’t worry if this is something that happens to your group. We’re going to share with you some of our best thinking about getting your team of fundraisers all fired up for success.
Motivate Volunteers with Social Recognition
Sure, people support a good cause because they want to help. But understanding how to recruit and get people excited is one of the top nonprofit challenges. To motivate volunteers and also get the attention of donors, you want to create an emotional connection and be in the spaces where they spend time. Of course, one of those places is social media!
One of the easiest things you can do is to ignite the passion of your volunteers and supporters for social activism. And, an easy way to do this is not merely to post and share your story, but engage with them to motivate volunteers. So, if you get volunteers who want to help you fundraise, for instance, tag them and mention them in your social networking posts as part of your story. Thank them, ask them questions, and ask them to share the love for your organization.
Supporters Need Personalization
Do you know one of the things that so many nonprofit fundraisers forget to do? They forget to creatively and sincerely appreciate their supporters. If anyone decides to raise funds or become a champion of your organization, that means they feel connected. But, learning how to motivate volunteers means you have to think of great supporters as a separate group.
There are many things that you can do to make them feel as if they’re part of something exclusive and special. For instance, invite them to volunteer champion-only events where they have time to meet others like themselves. You can also have your board members personally reach out to them and thank them. Why stop there to motivate volunteers? Why not feature them in your marketing efforts and campaigns, such as blog posts and social posts?
Create a Community to Motivate Volunteers
If there’s one thing that the crisis of 2020 showed us is that people want to share and be with other people. So, another excellent way for you to ensure that you motivate volunteers is by creating a unique community for them, and while you’re at it, give your champions a team name! Since many people message, why not create an exclusive and private group on a messaging app so that they can share?
For your community, you can also do other things, so you don’t miss any opportunity to share with them and encourage them to share amongst themselves. Thus, a few more ideas for how to motivate volunteers, especially a community, is to send them updates via an email newsletter. And make it a point to create opportunities for them to spend time together with after-work or family weekend events.
The reality is that every fundraising event needs great supporters and volunteers. They can be the lifeblood of your organization because they not only help you raise funds, but they also spread the word about your work. Just the three strategies mentioned above, done consistently, will help you ensure you motivate volunteers, and that they stay the course with you for the long-term.
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