When you have a platform like a blog, you have the potential to reach a lot of people quickly with a minimal amount of effort. As a consequence, other people may notice this from time to time and ask you to cross-promote their content.
It can be difficult to discern when it’s appropriate to cross-promote other people’s content on your blog. That’s especially the case if they ask you to promote their fundraiser.
You’ve probably seen the posts on Facebook that ask you to donate to someone’s cause. They all look the same. How do you choose which one(s) to donate to?
If you’re like most people, you choose not to have to decide and avoid donating to any of them. You just ignore them because you don’t know who’s promoting them. No matter how legitimate one sounds, you can’t help thinking they might be a scam.
That’s how you fear your readers will view any fundraiser you promote. If you want to promote a legitimate fundraiser on your blog and attract donations without driving away readers, here are four tips that will help.
- Use crowdfunding sparingly and strategically
When you’re a blogger, any time you ask your readers to donate money to a cause, they’re apt to go over the operation with a fine-tooth comb as well as everyone involved. Thus, because whatever you promote on your blog becomes part of your blog’s culture, unless you’re extraordinarily passionate about the cause, you probably shouldn’t promote it.
For example, you might own an online candle store, but if you cross-promote scarves, even though the scarves are not your product, you will begin to develop a reputation as a business that sells scarves as well as candles. For this reason, you should have a strategy in place before you promote any fundraising campaign.
- Dig deeply into the campaign for details
When you promote a fundraiser, don’t just casually toss out a link and say, “hey everyone, visit this site and donate today,” because that’s not going to be effective. Whenever people approach it this way, it just doesn’t work.
If you care about getting your readers to donate money to the cause, you need to provide details about it, why they should part with their hard-earned money, and how doing so might benefit both them as well as the cause. If you can’t do that, you won’t get donations.
- Avoid promoting medical expense campaigns
Medical expenses have been skyrocketing in the US for years. Given no other options, many people have turned to crowdfunding to offset the costs. According to Personalloan.co, there are even crowdfunding platforms primarily dedicated to funding medical campaigns like GiveForward.
But fundraisers for medical expenses carry their own set of challenges with regard to deterring fraud. David Bakelman, the CEO of HelpHOPELive, a nonprofit organization that helps patients raise money for their medical expenses, understands the concerns people have about donating.
Bakelman told the Huffington Post: “Patients come to us for fundraising because they are concerned that when they use crowdfunding websites, their donors are not able to verify right away that their contributions will go to the right person and will exclusively be used to help that person with condition-related expenses. We complete the verification step so that donors don’t have to do the research on their own.”
Medical-expense fundraising scams have been around for a long time, so if you’re going to promote a medical expense fundraiser on your blog, make sure you know exactly where the money is going because if the campaign isn’t legitimate, and your readers get scammed, it will come back to bite you.
- Create a heartfelt connection
Let’s say you want to promote a fundraising campaign to build a new playground at your local park. At first, you might be tempted to persuade everyone that they should donate to the campaign by telling them why the local kids need a new playground.
This makes sense, and there’s nothing wrong with it. However, if you want to be more effective, there’s a better strategy.
Instead of writing an article that says, “look at this fundraiser, here’s why you want to give your money to it,” find a way to talk about the subject from an angle that enables people to connect to it from the heart.
Using the playground example, you could write a piece that recalls a beautiful memory of watching your children play when they were younger. Paint the picture so your readers intimately share your experience.
At the end, you could announce that a new playground is being built and needs donations, and invite them to make a donation.
Your readers trust you … or they want to
Your readers might regard the fundraisers you promote with a raised eyebrow, but they’ll also consider the source (you) as a potentially determining factor in their decision to donate. So you need to be extremely judicious about choosing which fundraising campaigns you promote.
When you urge support for fundraisers your readers can connect with, you’ll not only be more likely to generate donations, but you’ll create a closer connection between yourself and your readers.