For so many of us, asking friends and family to sponsor us in a charity walk run or ride marked our first foray into fundraising. Without knowing what it’s called, we were participating in peer-to-peer fundraising, the art and science of tapping into supporters’ personal connections, leveraging the fact that people are more likely to give to people they know.
Peer-to-peer fundraising, also known as social fundraising, is a method of fundraising that leverages supporters to fundraise on a charity’s behalf.
How do I start peer-to-peer fundraising?
Set up your platform – create an online fundraising site to serve as a hub for your fundraising activity. This central platform is where you can connect your story to ours. This is also the place where everyone keeps track of overall progress and fundraise collaboratively. We have amazing resources to help you get started:
Reaching your charity fundraising target can be difficult, but it doesn’t have to be a chore.
Top tips for fundraising (from around the web and our Marketing and Fundraising team)
- Tell your personal story on fundraising page and describe the reason you’re undertaking the challenge – for example running the marathon. Explain why you’re running for your charity and describe the impact the money will have – don’t forget to keep your supporters updated on your progress and your training with posts, photos and videos.
- Sponsorship from individuals – get someone generous to sign your form first as this will set a precedent for the amounts that other people sign up to.
- Plan your fundraising – break your target down into manageable chunks, and think about who you can engage with different fundraising activities. Adopt a similar determined and planned approach to your fundraising as you do for your training. Plan how you are going to raise your sponsorship money from start to finish can save you a lot of time and hassle later.
- Start your fundraising as early as possible (the sooner you start, the more you will collect).
- Try to talk to people face to face to ask for sponsorship – invite your mates around for some tea and cake, get chatting and then ask.
- Enlist the help of others with your fundraising – check where you have a contact who can help you (e.g. media connections) spread your message exponentially.
- Host an event (for example holding a movie night, dinner party or quiz night): it might be enough to ask friends and family for sponsorship, but now that only gets you so far in your fundraising target. For anyone looking to boost their sponsorship, hosting an event or offering a service in the run up to race day can be a fun and easy way to bring you up to your target.
- Share information about the cause and say thank you – get as much information about the charity as you can, to share with your supporters.
- Explain the impact a donation can make – quantify what their donation could bring to your chosen charity.
- It’s the simple things – so much fundraising happens online now and it’s crucial you maximise the potential this offers. Start with simple things like changing your work email to include a link to your fundraising page. Don’t forget about the importance of using social media to tell a story with your fundraising – write a thought-out description of why you’re raising money for a particular charity and upload pictures of your training. The event itself will encourage people to carry on donating once the marathon is over.
- Approach the local press for publicity – the local press may be interested in giving you some publicity. Make it easy for them by providing your own write up and picture.
- Contact local businesses for donations – many of the larger companies in your area will provide sponsorship for individuals or provide a donation. You could offer to wear their logo on your t-shirt in return for their backing.
Some useful links to help you on your journey:
- The ultimate online guide for how to start preparing and sticking to your marathon – from all things serious: how to train and preventing injuries to your daily dose of inspiration.
- Can running make you smarter?
- The Elite Runner (“speed goggles”) – a series of short films about runners.