The Nonprofit Marketing Blog

Why Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Works

How does tapping into the power of relationships transform a simple ask into a more effective, inspiring call to action? This archived Nonprofit 911 webinar is all about leveraging the social nature of giving to grow your donor base and raise more money for your cause.

So, why does peer fundraising work so well? Why can’t organizations get the same results just sending out direct appeals to their audiences?

While giving is a highly emotional and at times deeply personal act, at its core, most giving is social. Our personal experiences and social ties often drive our decision to donate to a cause. Giving is how we relate and give back to our community and how we seek to improve the world for our fellow man.

Giving is also social in that we are strongly influenced by our family, friends, and networks—as well as those we perceive to be our peers. When an appeal for funds comes from someone in our networks that we trust, we’re more likely to act.

Here’s why peer fundraising campaigns can inspire a wave of new supporters for your cause:

Peer-to-peer fundraising is based on a two-way relationship.
Traditional fundraising appeals are often one-sided, broadcast messages. These promotions can move people to act, but they don’t easily capture the emotion or relationship that can drive giving on a massive scale. Social fundraising puts the message in the mouth of the person who is most likely to prompt a donation: someone the audience knows. The experience of supporting a good cause becomes one that people can have together, which makes it even more powerful.

People give to people.
A personal fundraiser is often more persuasive it comes to evoking emotion and inspiring action. Messengers from outside an organization are often more credible than the organization itself. That’s why an outside messenger, such as a donor that fundraises for an organization, has the potential to cut through the communications clutter.

The message is based in story.
There is no more powerful way to move people to action than through a compelling story. Storytelling often comes more naturally to supporters, who may have a personal stake in the cause. Stories told by people we know feel more meaningful than stories distributed by an organization. The more authentic a message is, the more likely people are to act. The effect of these personal stories is a powerful recruiting tool when you are looking to spread your message and recruit new supporters.

Social norms are powerful motivators.
You may think that you left peer pressure behind in middle school, but what our friends, family, and colleagues do still holds strong influence over the actions we take. Humans tend to want to conform to the social norm—what we feel is the standard, accepted behavior. Peer fundraising campaigns are a great way to establish a social norm of giving. When others see that friends, family, and their extended networks are coming together to support a good cause, it’s hard to resist joining in. Think of it as peer pressure for good.

So, tapping into social giving can make a big difference for your fundraising results, whether you implement some of these tactics in your next appeal, or decide to launch a more structured event.

Want more ideas? Download our guide, The Secrets of Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Success for more tips on how to get started on what to look for in technology that makes peer-driven fundraising easy and fun. Then, learn more about Network for Good’s powerful (and easy-to-use) peer-to-peer fundraising software. Schedule your personalized demo today.

Raise More This Year with Easy-to-Use Fundraising Software that Gets Results

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About This Blog

Linda Lombardi
Content Manager

We’re here to help you win hearts and minds—and donations.

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