Involving the Media in a Fundraising Campaign
One of the easiest ways to spread the word on a fundraising campaign is to obtain publicity via the media. Involving the media in a fundraising campaign can be a huge boost to attracting public interest and increasing donations.
Why Involve the Media in a Fundraising Campaign?Fundraisers looking for an inexpensive way to reach a huge audience should seriously consider the many ways to involve the media in a fundraising campaign. Local newspapers, radio and even local television can all be used to attract a huge audience. A local newspaper story or a radio interview will help to increase publicity and point people in the direction of a fundraising website. Catching the interest of the media can be tricky but there are certain methods open to fundraisers that will draw media attention.
Attract Public Interest Using the MediaLocal newspapers and radio shows are always looking for stories that capture public interest. Local fundraising campaigns can be of interest but it is true to say that the media love a sensational headline. It’s often not enough to simply state the facts of a fundraising campaign to capture media interest. Fundraisers should focus on the fundraising issues that may affect the local community. For example, if a fundraiser is raising money for local schools then highlight the reasons why the fundraiser is a necessity. Statements such as ‘financial cuts to local schools by councils’ as the reason for the fundraiser will attract attention from the public and the media.
Highlight the ‘News’ Factor of the FundraiserFundraisers should consider how newsworthy their campaign is in relation to attracting attention from the media. Look at the fundraising campaign and consider what can be used to capture media interest. Is there a celebrity involved in the campaign? Will the fundraising campaign bring about some sort of long-term change to the community? News stories and human interest stories will always be of interest to the media. These stories may be used to fill small slots in a newspaper or on a radio show and this is all it takes to gain a lot of exposure for a campaign.
Write a Fundraising Campaign Press ReleaseFundraisers can contact media companies using a press release. This should contain all of the vital information on the campaign and highlight points of interest that will attract the attention from the public. The press release should also mention the amount of people already taking part in the campaign. The more people involved in the campaign the more interested the media will be. Make the press release easy to understand, concise and always professional, meaning no spelling or grammatical errors.
Highlight Big Name Sponsors to Attract Media InterestWell known businesses that sponsor a fundraising campaign will help to bring in extra publicity and attract media attention. The bigger the business involved, the wider the exposure; think local branches of national supermarkets. Most big businesses will have an in-house media department that will be able to help with press releases. Fundraisers can also contact the sponsor’s press office or media department and request a slot in the in-house newsletter. It may also be a good idea to ask if someone from the business would consider speaking to the media or give a few quotes to be included in the press release.
Always Advertise Any Media InvolvementObtaining media interest brings additional credibility to a fundraiser. If a fundraising campaign does attract media interest always be sure to include radio interviews, television spots and newspaper clips on the fundraising website. Social networking sites are also a great way to keep publicity going and increase audience size. Use easily implemented tools such as the Facebook ‘like’ button on a website that can help to spread the latest fundraising news. The media and social networking sites are the best and most inexpensive way to publicise a fundraising campaign.
Other Ways to Publicise a Fundraising CampaignThere are plenty of ways to involve the media in a fundraising campaign including:
- Get students involved using college and university student magazines
- Write a story or press release to be included in free local community newspapers
- Place fundraising website links in the comments section of relevant newspaper stories
- Involve bloggers who write about fundraising and charities and email them a press release to be included on their blog
- Remember to use websites such as Gumtree and Craigslist to post stories in the listings section