Raising a Blizzard of Money Using Twitter

Hijacking a Blizzard for Twitter Fundraising Success

Hijacking a Blizzard for Twitter Fundraising Success

Wanna raise a blizzard of money online? Well then, tie your online fundraising in with a snowstorm!

That’s exactly what a single online ambassador did for Indiana nonprofit Wheeler Mission Ministries. The result? $41,000 raised through Twitter. That’s right – using ONLY Twitter, a single online ambassador raised more than $40,000 during one single snowstorm. For more on that story, check out the full post from SocialMedia Today by clicking here.

Hijacking Current Events = Fundraising Success

The snowstorm Twitter surge mentioned above happened when a smart supporter of Wheeler Mission decided he’d ask his connections to pledge a dollar amount for each inch of snow that fell during the storm. The end total was $3,700 per inch, which led to the $41,000 total for the 11+ inch storm.

The strategy above is known as “hijacking” a current event. Super Bowls, weather events, the Oscars, holidays …all can be leveraged to boost online fundraising in a big way. For another example, look at the first Tweetsgiving.

The up-and-coming-at-the-time Epic Change organization wanted to fund a school in Tanzania. To do so, they needed $10,000.

TweetsgivingDuring Thanksgiving 2009, the fledgling Epic Change group started sending out tweets with the hashtag #Tweetsgiving. Using that hashtag, Epic Change tweeters starting posting about what they were thankful for during the season of thanks. The hashtag caught on and soon thousands of people were tweeting their thanks using the hashtag #tweetsgiving.

Periodically, the Epic Change team would include a link to the online fundraising page in a tweet using the #Tweetsgiving tag. After just 48 hours, the buzz around the campaign led to the easy fulfillment of their goal, with more than $11,000 being raised. Epic change reached their funding goal by “hijacking” the Thanksgiving holiday by adding a clever twist in hashtag form.

What current events can your organization hijack for similar success?

Justin Ware is the Director of Interactive Communication at Bentz Whaley Flessner where he helps clients build online engagement and fundraising strategies.

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