I’ve rearranged my blog lineup to bring you this last minute post – because it is important. The last few months have been full of earthquakes, fires, hurricanes, floods, and now – mass shootings. Since crafters are a caring, generous bunch who often jump into action to raise funds for various charities I wanted to give you some tips on how to fundraise successfully for disasters and tragedies in your craft business.
- Choose the causes that matter to you. Your small business is a reflection of you. When you choose to fundraise causes that matter to you; you will often be more successful. As part of your fundraising, share why you are raising funds. For example, do you live locally? Does your family live in the affected area? This is one situation where connecting with your buyers can be impactful. Also, be careful to not let current events or natural disasters interfere too much with your normal business dealings.
- Set a fundraising goal. When you start your fundraising campaign, let shoppers know how much you are trying to raise. Be realistic in your goals.
- Keep shoppers updated on your progress. You should regularly update your customers of your fundraising progress. This is easily done through social media or website updates.
- Set an end date and donation date. Using an end date for fund collecting as a call to action is helpful to get shoppers to buy sooner rather than later. (Don’t know what a call to action is? See this post.) You should also set and advertise the date you will donate the funds.
- Be transparent about the portion of sales to be donated. It is important to set out specifics of how much money or what percentage of money raised will go to a charity. For example: 100% of profits will go to XYZ charity. In this case, you subtract your supply and labor costs from the money you bring in and all profits are donated. In contrast, $10 of every sale goes to ABC charity. In this case, only a portion of the sale is going to the charity.
- Be cautious on social media. There’s a very fine line on social media when raising funds, especially if people have lost their lives. Be sure that you don’t use hashtags that are set up in memory of specific people or those reserved for news updates. If your followers think that you are using popular hashtags to profit, your business could be in jeopardy.
- Hold your business accountable. Unfortunately, as a single person home based business, it is easy to raise funds and not donate them. I recommend complete transparency by providing proof that the donation has been made by your business. If you are donating online, a screenshot of the donation confirmation is acceptable. If you are donating in person, a photo of the donation receipt or you handing the check over are both fine to use.
Need help finding a reputable charity? Head to Charity Navigator.
My thoughts and prayers to those still dealing with the disasters and tragedies of the last few months.
If you feel like this is important information, feel free to share it on social media.