Thanks to charities and non-profit organisations millions of people, animals, and even locations receive help, support and a chance for a better future. But this wouldn’t be possible without financial support offered by private individuals who donate to causes close to their hearts. That is the reason why non-profit organisations are on a continuous lookout for new ways to generate awareness and visibility for their projects, while also looking to convert new financial supporters.
Online fundraisers, social media campaigns, fundraising events and auctions are popular within the non-profit sector, however, there is one strategy that seems to be working extremely well for NGOs - telefundraising. The telemarketing concept was first invented in the 1950s when a small dialer centre was established in the United States. Its growing popularity resulted in many businesses employing telemarketing strategies, which resulted in the term “telemarketing” being used for the first time in 1970.
Fast forward more than five decades, telemarketing is still a thing, even though it’s adapted and transformed significantly. Interestingly, it’s been adopted by many different industries, including non-profit organisations, which led to a formation of a new word - telefundraising.
What is telefundraising?
Telefundraising is a method of raising funds by making a telephone call to prospective donors and asking them for financial support for charities, NGOs, educational institutions, and political parties. Prospective donors can be private individuals or businesses.
During a telefundraising campaign, a trained telemarketing agent rings a list of prospective donors to seek support for the organisation. As part of that campaign, the caller provides information about the organisation, its mission and projects, as well as how the potential donation will help the soliciting charity. Telefundraising can be done in-house or outsourced to third-party agencies specialising in fundraising calls. Additionally, the outbound telemarketing software programs used for telefundraising campaigns can be integrated with payment plugins, which allow the agents to collect payments directly on the call.
Advantages of telefundraising campaigns for charities
You may imagine that telemarketing campaigns conducted by non-profit organisations bring many benefits. Here we take a look at the most relevant advantages of telemarketing for charities:
1. Use telefundraising activities to reach a wider audience for your non-profit organisation
One of the main benefits of fundraising is that it allows you to reach a large number of prospective donors with your message. This is particularly beneficial for non-profit organisations with a limited marketing budget. Apart from reaching out to new prospects, a great idea would be to touch base with all the previous and one-time donors who supported your mission sometime in the past. Some of them might be willing to jump on the bandwagon and financially help your projects again.
Another great advantage brought by telefundraising campaigns is the fact that you can easily target specific segments of your target audience. For example, you can reach out to a certain age group or businesses in a specific industry or geographical area, which allows your messaging to reach the right people.
Do you use a professional telesales system? If you don’t then believe us when we say you should definitely look into it! Apart from streamlining processes and giving you better control over your leads, you also get to automatically dial numbers and therefore contact more prospects, which has a direct impact on your campaign results.
2. Telefundraising is more cost-effective than other fundraising methods
Raising funds always generates costs, no matter the method. However, telefundraising can be conducted remotely, which means that there are no overhead costs. There is no need for renting physical space, purchasing equipment, or hiring staff to manage the campaign, which is always the case when running events, field sales and auctions.
Most charities outsource their telefundraising campaigns but if you’re on a tight budget you can involve your own team. All you have to do is ensure that they know all the laws and regulations for telefundraising campaigns and that they can deliver quality information to the prospects. Tick all these boxes and you’re in for more efficient use of time and resources.
3. Increase donor engagement and interaction with telefundraising campaigns
Digital marketing and social media campaigns are highly effective but they lack one crucial aspect: the human connection, a very much relevant factor in the digitalised world. Telemarketers experienced in the charitable sector are fantastic conversation starters who know how to engage the person on the other side of the receiver. While it’s easy to ignore sales letters or yet another email in your inbox, telefundraising allows charities to start a direct dialogue with existing and prospective donors. The telephone happens to be the perfect medium to guide the prospect through the donation process and establish stronger relationships with donors.
Are you still not sure about starting a direct dialogue with your donors? It’s necessary to remember that charities execute their missions thanks to all the individuals that financially support good causes. Therefore, picking up the phone and thanking the supporter is a great way to augment their loyalty and generate further trust towards your organisation.
It might be worth adding that many charities and organisations connect donors secured through other fundraising channels with their telemarketing teams so that they can increase donor loyalty and retention.
4. Telefundraising provides easier tracking and reporting of results
Using professional call centre software allows you to track and report the results of your fundraising campaigns. You can easily track the number of calls made, the duration of each call, its success rate and other important metrics like conversion rates and telemarketing ROI. All this information can be then used to analyse the effectiveness of the telefundraising campaign and make adjustments to future projects.
5. Telefundraising: Convert more donors by offering convenience
Telefundraising campaigns have one specific advantage; they provide donors with the convenience of donating from the comfort of their own homes. Another important advantage is the fact that interested individuals can complete donations while all the phone, as Waytobill’s payment plugin is integrated with a variety of different telesales systems. This means that the telesales agent can send a payment link directly to the donor’s phone so that they can confirm their payment or mandate for Digital Autogiro. This is particularly important to donors looking for convenience, as telefundraising campaigns allow them to support charities close to their hearts without having to attend fundraising events or visit donation centres. This flexibility can encourage more people to donate and can therefore help to increase the overall success of the telefundraising campaign.
6. Telefundraising brings greater potential for recurring donations
By reaching out to customers via telemarketing, charities and non-profit organisations stand a better chance of securing more recurring donations and therefore long-term support. Donors who participate in telemarketing campaigns may be more likely to set up recurring donations due to the human connection and direct dialogue that leads to the prospects better understanding of the projects and establishing a personal connection with the fundraiser and charity. The ongoing financial support can be achieved by signing donors for recurring payments. This is possible with Waytobill’s payment plugin integrated into telesales systems.
Overall, telefundraising can be a valuable tool for non-profit organisations and other groups that rely on donations to support their work. However, it is important for callers to be respectful of donors' time and privacy, and to clearly communicate the organisation's mission and goals in order to maximize the chances of receiving donations. The majority of non-profit organisations conduct telefundraising campaigns. In some cases, telemarketing is a continuous strategy, while for others it’s an activity adapted depending on the needs and time of the year. It’s a cost-effective way to raise vital funds that help NGOs continue their ongoing work.
If you want to find out more about collecting payments while on the fundraising call, make sure to contact us! You can also head to our blog post full of ideas for digital fundraising.