How to Raise Funds (by Getting Your Giver to Enjoy Giving)
People give more when they are having fun, or are able to access the joy of giving you funds to do your thing. Charities tap into this by telling stories (because naturally, people are more interested in investing in a story they can be a part of), or by creating events and programs that are fun to participate in so that even people who aren’t directly connected to the “cause” want to participate.
All that is covered in the above video of Peter Sagal (host of the NPR game show “Wait, Wait…Don’t Tell Me!”) as part of The Chronicle of Philanthropy’s ideas and advice on raising money.
FJP: I’ve always been on the fence about raising money for serious causes by hosting (silly and/or alcohol based) events. It works, sure, and I’ve been to and donated at plenty of such events. But there’s always been some sort of unidentifiable moral hiccup in the idea that’s made me uncomfortable. Sagal’s point about connecting donors to (hopefully) a success story they can witness, however, makes a lot of sense. It’s partially why things like Kickstarter work.
Which leads to this TED Talk by Katherine Fulton on crowd-driven philanthropy, the extracted thought being that collaboration is an investment in both fun and experience. Which, in many ways, is where journalism is at, and where its going.
Philanthropy teaches us that people give (time, money or attention) when they are having fun (like, for example, on BuzzFeed) or when they get to vicariously experience success and get some sort of credit for it (see: the FJP’s crowdfunding archives).
It’s not a new thought. But it’s a pretty good truth to keep in one’s pocket when thinking about the future of journalism. —Jihii