Most sporting organisations historically tap the same shoulders each year of their past donors, board members and internal stakeholders however this well is limited and can dry up quickly.
Over the past few years the Foundation has documented donations to sport increasing from other stakeholder groups involved with your sport:
- Players and Participants contributed (37%) of donations last year including: coaches, officials, volunteers and organisers.
- Alumni groups are becoming a great avenue for sport to continue to develop with a lot of our registered schools and clubs successfully harnessing their old boys and girls for much needed funds towards their projects annually.
- Families and friends will always want to support their loved ones in pursuing their interests and can be counted on to support within their means whether that be through a donation or equally as helpful by sharing the project to their networks with a personalised message of support.
- Fans and followers of your sport or cause already have a vested interest and connection whether that is through the entertainment they get through sport or a nostalgic feeling of wanting the sport to succeed. Utilise your followers, last year we accounted (17%) of donations to sport from this group of donors. Every like on social media, every hit on your website, every member on your database may want to contribute after engaging with your compelling story and worthy cause but may have never been asked.
- Community members such as local businesses, corporates and philanthropists are often in a position to regularly donate to worthy causes and tend to prefer projects that will contribute to the society they belong to. Think about which business or individual would align well with your cause and don’t be afraid to put a pre-prepared fundraising proposal to them in person. If they cannot commit to a straight cash donation then they may wish to contribute via a matched giving arrangement or promote your projects via their channels to extend your reach.
Start to put together a list of all your potential donors from every aspect of your organisation and tailor your story to each group. Suddenly the handful of individuals you had thought of targeting can become an army of support for your cause.
I am reminded every day that fundraising is an art not a science and different approaches will work for different projects. As a weekend warrior fisherman, there is a fishing analogy that rings true to fundraising: You can use a generic bait over a large area to attract a variety of fish or use a specific bait targeted at a particular type of fish to increase your chances of catching the one species, there is always an element of luck but as long as there is a line in the water you have a fighting chance.
Chris Bond OAM, Sports Partnership Manager