Small business sometimes find themselves in need of donations. Maybe you run a local radio station, maybe you have a local magazine, or maybe you’re just a local band trying to make your way among so many other creatives that are also trying to do what they love for a living (or at least part-time). You could need money for any number of things, from buying merchandise to sell at your shows to paying for the next issue or paying for a new hire.
There are many ways you can accept donations online, but there are also some good reasons to consider doing something offline in order to garner donations. This could be having a benefit, hosting a silent auction, or running a donation drive. Here are a few things that might help you along the way.
Make It Appealing
Whether you’re running a crowdfunding campaign online or having people call into your radio station to make donations, you need to make it appealing to people. You need to make them want to give your business or organization money. Just begging or telling them to give you money isn’t going to be enough to convince many people.
You need to start by telling them who you are, why you need this money, and why it is they should help you get it. Be honest and sincere and you’ll attract more donations. Explain that creative funding has been cut by the government, or that it is local donations that have always kept you running, or that this is a new venture and you’re just getting your startup cash now because you were too excited to wait to launch your magnificent idea.
Offer Something People Want
People always like to give to a good cause, but you know as well as anyone else that it can be nice to get something for your money aside from a warm and fuzzy feeling. That’s why it can be helpful to offer people something as a reward for their donation. Even online crowdfunding campaigns allow you to offer a reward for donations, which could be anything from a free band t-shirt and CD to a free one-year subscription to your magazine.
If you’re having an in person benefit or auction of some kind, you still want to make sure you have things people want. Book the bands or entertainment that are popular right now in your area. Have merch that people are going to want (people don’t want pencils with your business name on them, they want pens). Have auction items that will draw bids, like local business gift certificates.
You can successfully get money for your small business through donations, you just need to make a smart plan to go about getting them. People like to give, but they also want to know exactly who they’re giving to and what they’re giving for.