The virus shut down has caused many non-profits to postpone or cancel their live fundraising events. As a non-profit, you may be searching for ways to bring in these much-needed funds while adhering to social distancing.

Below are ways to utilize your current assets (direct mail list, website) as well as new marketing technologies and ideas that may help.


1.    Anonymous website visitor identification and conversion

These visitors have shown interest in your cause by visiting your website - so try to engage with them.

a.    You have probably spent money on your website and may have even spent money to drive potential donors there, but many of them leave and you do not know who they are.

b.    Technology is able to identify the name and home address of many of your anonymous website visitors that never engage with you.

c.     You can then send a donor request via direct mail or a digital direct mail to their device.

2.    Digital Listening

Page one of search is where most online traffic is generated, however, usingPay-Per-Click or Search Engine Optimization to appear there can be prohibitively expensive. Non-profits can still target potential donors searching with high converting keywords and connect with them.

For example, say your non-profit is“Save All Trees". Technology can monitor up to 25 keywords, like – SaveRedwood trees, Save Maple trees, Save Elm trees etc. When the prospective donor clicks to one of the search results pages, an email can be sent to the person searching with information about your cause - Save All Trees.

a.    These searchers have indicated their interest and may be likely donors.

b.    Emailed donor requests can be sent to these keyword searchers within an hour of their search.

c.     Open rates of 20% and click through rates of6%-10% are  not uncommon.

d.    The cost is lower than Google PPC, GoogleDisplay, and Facebook.


3.    Digital Direct Mail

a.    This technology is able to determine the digital address (tablet, phone, laptop, desktop) of the people on your direct mail list.

b.    Adding digital direct mail to a standard direct mail campaign can increase donations 20%-80%. 

4.    Geoframing

a.    A virtual frame can be drawn around any physical location or gathering up to six months in the past.

b.    If there have been physical social gatherings of likely donors to your cause, you can identify the names and addresses of many of these attendees.

c.     Send them direct mail or digital direct mail donor requests.

d.    Geoframing is superior to Geofencing.


5.    Look-a-Like donor outreach

a.    Your current donor database can be analyzed, and an ideal donor profile can be created.

b.    Contact lists can be purchased that match your ideal donor profile.

c.     Digital or direct mail campaigns can be launched to solicit donations.


6.    Social Listening

Non-profits are able to reach out people who follow and like social pages of causes similar to theirs. For instance, say your cause is “Save All Trees”, you can use Social Listening to contact the people who follow the social pages of Save Maple Trees, Save Elm Trees or other similar social pages.

a.    Donor requests can be emailed to supporters of like causes within an hour.

b.    These followers have shown an interest in helping causes like yours, so they are more likely to open an email of a similar cause.

c.     Open rates of 20% and click through rates of6%-10% are common.


7.    Similar Cause Outreach

a.    Technology is able monitor the website visitors of causes similar to yours.

b.    Digital outreach can let these visitors know about your cause as well.


I hope these thoughts have given you some new ideas to consider in your ongoing quest to provide much needed services.

We want to help local non-profits during these difficult times. If you are interested in implementing some of these digital strategies, we are offering these services at a discounted price. Learn more here.



Blog by Bill Harrington.

Bill Harrington is owner of Deductive Marketing andRecruiting in Los Gatos. He has over 20 years’ experience in marketing, promotions, and technology and is always looking for creative new ways to use technology in marketing. He has been a Board Member of the Silicon Valley Organization, as well as a current Ambassador and Past President. He lives in San Jose with Helen, his wife of 34 years, enjoys playing and teaching music, sailing, and biking and he cannot wait for this Covid SIP to be over so he can hug his daughters Katie and Emily again. He can be reached at or


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