4 Tips to Add Ambassador Marketing to Your Next Fundraiser

July 25, 2023 0 Comments

You need a strong marketing strategy to make your next fundraiser a success. After all, your valuable donors can’t register for your event or participate in your upcoming campaign if they don’t know it’s happening! If you’re gearing up to host a fundraiser, you might be scrambling to find the right marketing tactics to engage your audience. But, what if the key to success was already in your donor base?

Rather than having to lead a marketing strategy on your own, expand your reach by tapping loyal ambassadors to support your organization.

Ambassadors are the social butterflies of the fundraising world. These are individuals who have social media followings, personal networks, and a huge potential to turn your next fundraising campaign into a success by putting it in front of as many people as possible. Plus, ambassadors can even fundraise on your behalf and help you meet and exceed your goals!

To strengthen your marketing plan with the help of ambassadors, use these key tips:

Meeting your fundraising and donor engagement goals is easy when you’ve got the support of a stellar squad of ambassadors. Let’s begin.

Recruit Well-Connected Supporters

Picking the right ambassadors can greatly impact the success of your marketing and your fundraising outcomes. Your ambassadors should be well-connected, outgoing, and/or have a well-regarded reputation in the community. More than anything, they should know your mission and be eager to champion your cause. Look for ambassadors among your:

  • Major donors
  • Staff and loyal volunteers
  • Board members
  • Event committee members
  • Supporters with a large social media following
  • Sponsors and local business connections

Once you’ve identified prospective ambassadors, reach out to them with a personalized request to join your campaign. Be sure to offer to set up a meeting to walk through what being an ambassador for your cause would entail. This doesn’t have to be a daunting task. Be thoughtful and genuine in your approach and consider the ambassador program an honor!

Provide Training, Guidelines, And Resources

With the right ambassadors on board, it’s time to get them ready to market your fundraising campaign or event. Let your ambassadors know exactly what they’ll be doing to spread the word about your fundraiser by leveraging these best practices:

  • Hold an in-person or virtual training session to orient them to marketing best practices: Highlight the marketing efforts your team has in place, introduce your branding guidelines, and show your ambassadors how they’ll fit within your in-print or digital marketing plan.
  • Review additional social media materials: Go over all social media guidelines, including hashtags they should use, accounts they should tag, links to include, and any other relevant details. Provide them with a content calendar of when to share social media posts so their marketing efforts align with your nonprofit’s overarching marketing plan. As you and your ambassadors build out content, Double the Donation’s guide to digital marketing for nonprofits recommends tracking social media metrics, such as the number of impressions, reposts, and likes, to assess how your social strategy is performing overall.
  • Invite them to a conference: You may even consider inviting ambassadors to an upcoming marketing or fundraising conference to learn more about tried and true promotional strategies. Not only are conferences a great opportunity for your ambassadors to align on marketing best practices, but they also give your organization’s staff a chance to brush up on existing marketing strategies while also learning what’s new and trending.

Arming ambassadors with the right tips and tools at the beginning of the fundraising campaign empowers them to be amazing advocates for your cause, grow brand awareness for your mission, and increase final proceeds on event night. Make sure you have a point person on hand that ambassadors can turn to whenever they have questions. This way, ambassadors can confidently take on their roles and spotlight your cause.

Encourage Ambassadors to Peer-To-Peer Fundraise

Your ambassadors aren’t just an invaluable resource for marketing your campaign! They can also help fundraise on your behalf.

Peer-to-peer fundraising hands over the fundraising reins to your ambassadors and empowers them to create personal fundraising pages to raise as much money as possible. You can lead a standalone ambassador peer-to-peer campaign or pair your events, like gala fundraisers or auctions, with peer-to-peer fundraising to drive even more proceeds.

In order for this to be a success, you must:

  • Have the right fundraising software in place.
  • Properly train them on how to use the software and make a fundraising ask.
  • Encourage and motivate them along the way.
  • Show your gratitude early and often by writing thank-you notes and shouting out your ambassadors on event night.

With a well-thought-out ambassador fundraising campaign, you can create new engagement and revenue streams before your event even starts!

Create Ambassador Contests

One of the main reasons ambassador fundraising and marketing is so successful is the element of competition. In a typical ambassador fundraising campaign, ambassadors fundraise on behalf of a nonprofit for 4-6 weeks and the top fundraiser is crowned the winner at the main event!

But there are plenty of other ways to implement an ambassador contest. Therefore, it’s important to define your contest elements in advance. The OneCause guide to peer-to-peer fundraising recommends following these steps to create your contest:

  • Decide what the goal of your ambassador fundraising campaign is (e.g., ticket sales, sponsorships, donations, social awareness)
  • Determine how you’ll choose your winner
  • Outline how you’ll recognize, motivate, and thank ambassadors
  • Choose how you’ll incorporate the ambassador fundraiser into your overall event

For example, you might run a campaign before your year-end fundraising gala, have ambassadors compete for the most tickets sold, then announce the winner at your event. Or offer a prize to the ambassador who gets the most likes and comments on their promotional social media posts or the ambassador who raises the most money.

Wrapping Up

Running a fundraiser is a fairly involved process, but luckily, your nonprofit’s team doesn’t have to do it alone! With the help of your trusted ambassadors, you can successfully market your campaign or event, boost awareness for your cause, and raise even more money. Be sure to provide your ambassadors with the proper training and support throughout the campaign so they remain motivated and excited to elevate your cause!