Blog Series: 10 Ways to Motivate your Donors to Run a Peer-to-Peer Campaign

Motivate Donors FB & LI (4)

Donor activation is critical for a successful peer-to-peer fundraising campaign. In this post, we’ll outline three audiences to target for your next peer-to-peer campaign. We’ll also provide suggestions to encourage your donors to participate because peer-to-peer fundraising is much more than launching a pretty campaign page.

 Who are the prime candidates to participate in a peer-to-peer fundraising event?

First, your organization should target previous peer-to-peer fundraisers, event participants, and donors. If you captured these donor details within your CRM, you can create marketing lists and ask these donors to participate again. Based upon their previous involvement, encourage these donors to increase their individual fundraising goals or solicit gifts from more donors.

Another donor segment to target are individual givers. Dig into your donor data, identify those individuals who have previously given – maybe these donors are repeat givers or share similar demographics with previous peer-to-peer participants. Focus your messaging on furthering their engagement with your organization through peer-to-peer fundraising.

How do you encourage new donors to participate?

According to NonProfit PRO’s 2021 Peer-to-Peer Fundraising study, 30% of respondents do not engage in peer-to-peer fundraising because they “don’t believe it will receive enough interest among our audience to make it worthwhile.”

It’s up to your organization to provide your donors with compelling reasons to participate. If you are unsure of their interest levels, survey your current donor base to determine their willingness to engage.

Ultimately, don’t be afraid to experiment with new fundraising strategies. You may surprise yourself with a successful event that you host year after year.

Here are ten ways to motivate your donors to participate in a peer-to-peer event: 

1. Engage in community.

After years spent in various stages of isolation, most individuals are eager for human connection and interaction. Peer-to-peer fundraising offers an incredible opportunity for individuals to unite over a common cause and work collectively toward one goal. Within your messaging, remind your donors of the benefits of participating within community for improved mental health and well-being.

2. Get moving!

Many popular peer-to-peer events are a-thons including runs, walks, or bike rides. These events encourage physical activity and promote a good cause – a win-win for any individual interested in exercise.

3. Make new friends and connections.

Peer-to-peer events bring together individuals all with a similar interest. This interest provides common ground upon which friendships and partnerships can be built. Promote your peer-to-peer events as opportunities to connect with like-minded peers with the potential for networking both professionally and personally.

4. Leave a legacy.

Philanthropic individuals are eager to leave the world better than they found it. Participation in peer-to-peer events is a step toward that goal.

5. Participate in something larger than yourself.

Peer-to-peer events allow donors to participate in a ripple effect of giving. With the average online peer-to-peer donation amount totaling less than $100, these individuals contribute even more collectively than they do individually. It’s empowering for your donors to witness the growth of their individual fundraising campaigns by making one ask via email or one post on social media.

6. Tap into your competitive spirit.

Peer-to-peer events offer the perfect opportunity to engage in friendly competition. Encourage your participants to create teams through their workplaces, schools, or churches and challenge other local businesses or community groups to participate. Each group should set their own team fundraising goal and promote their participation on social media. This will generate a positive buzz within the community!

7. Peek behind the curtain of fundraising.

As a nonprofit fundraiser, you’re in the thick of creating, planning, and executing fundraising campaigns. You’ve built your resilience to withstand the highs and lows of making asks. Many of your donors do not have the experience fundraising; their participation in a peer-to-peer event provides a unique look into your role as fundraiser.

8. Honor loved ones through memorial campaigns.

Peer-to-peer campaigns are popular with cause-cure organizations to celebrate lives affected by disease or illness. Even if your organization does not focus on disease or disorder prevention, promote your event as an opportunity to honor a donor’s loved one who was passionate about giving back to the community – no matter the cause.

9. Spark your creativity.

Peer-to-peer events are terrific opportunities for your donors to tap into their creativity – whether that’s whipping up a colorful cake for a donation-based bake sale or donning a fun outfit for a race or walk. Depending upon the activity within your peer-to-peer event, you can encourage your participants to showcase their passion for your cause.

10. Have fun.

The most important factor of a peer-to-peer event is fun! No matter if in-person, virtual, or hybrid, your participants will engage in collective activity, spend time with friends or family, and contribute to a worthy cause. All this contributes to a worthwhile event that will be remembered year after year!

It may seem daunting at first to launch a peer-to-peer fundraising event. However, by segmenting your current donors and offering a reason to participate, you will spark their interest to tap into their networks for support for your cause.

Eager for more best practices on peer-to-peer fundraising?

Watch our webinar - Peer-to-Peer Fundraising: The Ultimate Guide for Nonprofits!


Posted by Kelly Perry

Kelly Perry is a Senior Digital Marketing Manager, Nonprofit Solutions at StratusLIVE. She has over eight years marketing and communications experience within nonprofit technology and the publishing industries.