How to modernize your next nonprofit capital campaign

on November 26, 2018

In the past, financial hardships were an isolating and often insurmountable challenge, but with technology tools like GoFundMe, people can now tap into their community of friends and family to share their struggle and make real change in their personal life. The same goes in our professional world, especially as a nonprofit. You no longer have to struggle to raise money to fund investments that will help you do good — more effectively and efficiently.

Living in a socially connected world means you have a reachable network of passionate supporters who believe wholeheartedly in your cause. This also means they are more likely to help you get what you need to further your mission and reach your goals.

The modern capital campaign

Have you ever thought about crowdfunding a capital campaign to make much-needed investments in your nonprofit?

Nonprofits have the opportunity to use technology to ignite real change within their organization. Now, you can be transparent about your needs, highlight your organization's goals, and craft a story that illustrates how achieving these milestones can impact the issues you’re working so hard to solve. Here are a few ways to reach out to your supporters and modernize your capital campaign.

"I think it's important to talk about how it still directly affects programming and it directly affects the people we serve. So even though it seems like maybe you're funding overhead, you're actually funding a lot of stuff that helps us serve everybody a lot better and helps us grow."

- Lauren, The Empowerment Plan

1. Be transparent earlyblg_capitalCampaign_2018_1Email_In-blog-GraphicsInstead of just reaching out to supporters and letting them know you’re in need of a certain piece of technology or infrastructure improvement, keep them actively engaged so that they start to understand the real nature of your needs. Nurturing them over time helps to connect them with the challenges you’re facing, and also conveys what solutions would help you overcome those challenges.

Letting your supporters know where you’re headed and what’s keeping you from getting there can go a long way in the story of communicating why investing in your nonprofit can make such a huge difference.

2. Create an online fundraising campaignblg_capitalCampaign_2018_2OnlineCampaign_In-blog-GraphicsIt’s now easier than ever for nonprofits to launch online campaigns to crowdsource funds. By choosing to go online with your capital campaign, you’re meeting your supporters where they spend much of their time, and you’re making it easy to get involved right away.

Online campaigns give your supporters a frictionless way to help you hit a meaningful goal, and in a way that keeps them effortlessly in the loop — so be sure to provide updates to your online community when milestones are hit, or give shoutouts to individual contributors of your campaign.

3. Reach out to your superhero supportersblg_capitalCampaign_2018_3SuperHero_In-blog-GraphicsEvery nonprofit has that group of supporters that are passionate, high energy, and ready to help at a moment's notice. They’re your nonprofit superheroes and they can be an integral component to a successful capital campaign.

Individually reach out to them and get them on board with where you’re headed. Like we mentioned above, give them the real truth about what you’re missing in your organization and how, if your needs are met, you’ll see a real impact on your cause.

Ask them to share with their network of friends and family the goal of your capital campaign, and provide them with some language so that they can effectively paint the picture of how this investment could go such a long way in furthering your mission.

4. Use list segmentation

You might have an inkling into the type of supporter who is more likely to give to your capital campaign. Think about your passionate volunteers, big donors, and also smaller donors that give to all your campaigns. Make sure to treat them as VIPs and remind them of how appreciated they are for the actions they’ve taken with your cause in the past.


Capital campaigns, and the resulting impact, can take your mission to the next level. Not only can they fix operational gaps within your organization, but they can provide integral improvements that have a direct impact on those you serve.

Rilee Chastain

Rilee Chastain is the Content Marketing Specialist at CrowdRise. She is passionate about content optimization and all things social, and cares way too much about her Instagram aesthetic. She also has a life goal to eat mac and cheese at least 3 times a week.