Your alumni are the single biggest resource for your school’s fundraising programs. At the vast majority of schools, former students (and their families and colleagues) provide the lion’s share of fundraising revenue. For that reason, maintaining strong relationships with your school’s alumni is the primary goal of your development system.
While some schools understand this instinctively, it’s been my experience that most K–12 schools have difficulty building the type of relationships with young alumni that get those former students actively invested in philanthropy. As a result, most schools focus on older alumni and hope to reconnect with recent graduates after they finish their schooling, have families, and mature in their careers.
In our recent guide Starting Off on the Right Foot: How to Engage Alumni Early to Maximize Giving Success, we outlined why waiting to launch fundraising efforts with young alumni could prove problematic. The guide also provided a simple, step-by-step system for turning recent graduates into lifelong givers to your school.
In this guide, we want to go further and show how you can use advanced strategies to get millennials invested in your fundraising programs. The three strategies outlined in this guide will help you raise money from millennial alumni through the channels they prefer—including how to use those channels to turn recent graduates into long-term donors for your school.
The three strategies we are going to look at are experiential fundraising, email (yes, email!), and crowdfunding. Each of these strategies appeal to young alumni for very specific reasons, which we will explore in this guide.
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