Girls Rock! Indianapolis’ annual summer camp, like all events, looked differently this year. For the first time, the organization delivered its day camp entirely virtually. Rather than gearing up for an in-person concert, volunteers taught the kids how to produce songs digitally. While our total number of campers was smaller, post-camp survey results indicated the program was very impactful for those who participated.
Once I saw the data, I knew it could make a strong case for our supporters. Not only did we stay committed to hosting our largest annual program throughout the pandemic, we were able to positively impact kids’ self-confidence, self-expression abilities, and social skills. We had the data to prove it.
I synthesized the data into a series of key statistics, outcomes that could be communicated to our target audience members quickly and concisely. One of our marketing committee members flipped these statistics into eye-catching, on-brand graphics for use across social media platforms:
Following the finalization of these graphics, I worked with our board president, treasurer and fundraising chair to set up a Facebook fundraiser. Facebook allowed us to easily track the incoming donations, as well as avoid sending folks away from our page to an external PayPal link.
We set our first goal at $325, enough money to provide a scholarship for one kid who otherwise could not afford camp tuition. Then, I used a combination of logical and emotional appeals to engage potential donors. The statistics in the graphics proved that kids had been impacted by camp, but it also tugged at the heartstrings of past volunteers and parents who have sent their kids to our camp. Those individuals have experienced that impact firsthand – I knew that those closest to our mission would be the most likely supporters.
As my first fundraiser with this organization, I was not sure what to expect from our supporters. I was reassured when we hit our initial goal – in under a week. And then, after doubling our goal amount to $650, we did it again. Within 12 days, we raised enough money to help two kids from low income backgrounds to be able to attend camp next year.
From there, I increased the goal again to $975. For this final round, we leaned more heavily on emotional appeals, increasing donations by having individuals share the fundraiser.
We also invested $10 in a boosted post that linked to the fundraiser, to increase engagement and reach a new audience. This post was built around a news article concerning body image, featuring musician and pop culture phenomenon Billie Eilish. Our Facebook profile manager drafted a thoughtful comment in response to the article, tying GRI’s mission back to positive self image and including a link to our fundraiser.
As of December 25, we achieved our tripled fundraising goal! I am so proud to have met this goal, knowing the awesome cause it benefits. I am grateful for GRI’s supporters, especially the volunteers who helped signal boost our cause. What a wonderful Christmas present!