401Gives Business Fundraiser's Toolkit
The support of local businesses and the amplification of their support via their employees and their customers is critical to the success of 401Gives! Not only does your participation help ensure a successful day of fundraising for our nonprofits, but your dedication to their important work will be recognized throughout Rhode Island. For the 401Gives, we're offering your business an opportunity to engage your employees and customers to donate to causes they're passionate about, and in turn, bring invaluable visibility to your business.
How can I be successful in spreading philanthropy to my employees and customers? Check out the Business Toolkit below for ideas on running a successful fundraiser. We've supplied marketing resources, communication templates, and ideas around incentives and celebrations to really engage your employees and customers in giving, and how they can further spread your message to their networks.
Interested in learning more about 401Gives and the value to your business? Contact 401Gives@unitedwayri.org.
How do I run a successful fundraiser for my business?
The number one recommendation for running a successful fundraiser for 401Gives is that you are truly celebrating and encouraging the act of philanthropy - big and small! Here are some tips, tricks, and ideas on how to encourage you employees and your customers to rally around philanthropy, and the single largest fundraiser in the Rhode Island community!
What incentives can I offer or celebrations can I plan to my employees or customers?
As you hit your giving day milestones or to just celebrate the giving spirit of 401Gives, plan some fun and excitement in at your business or office on April 1. We have some ideas below, but the sky's the limit in how you can engage your employees and customers, and encourage philanthropy on 401Gives!
- Food: Cater a snack break, host a pot luck, or a dessert party to celebrate giving
- Attire: Have a casual dress day so employees can dress to represent the agency or cause they care about
- Advertise: Pass out “I Gave” stickers to employees who gave to celebrate the causes they care about
- Competition: Have a competition between departments to see who can raise the most and offer a prize
- Discounts: If you have a store front, offer a percentage off of an item if they can show they gave (401Gives sends out a receipt to each donor for easy access on their phone!).
- Raffle: Offer a raffle, and every time a donor gives if as entry into the raffle.
- Happy Hour: Host a happy hour and invite local nonprofits and your customers to meet and mingle!
Use some of these sample communications below to start spreading the word about your business's involvement in 401Gives. When sharing on social media, make sure you're always using the official hashtag, #401Gives to be included in the conversation!
Facebook and Twitter
Facebook is the most popular form of social media to share about participation in giving day - so make sure you're using it leading up to and on April 1! You can use Facebook to share with employees and your customers how you're participating in 401Gives and amplifying the giving efforts.
- Announce your participation: We are excited to announce our participating in #401Gives on April 1! Find out why we're participating on our page here: [YOUR BUSINESS LINK] and mark your calendars for April 1 to give to your favorite nonprofit!
- If you're offering a match: Today, our business is focused on improving on community by matching all our employees' gifts made to nonprofits through #401Gives! There are over [X] number of nonprofits participating to improve the lives of our community members. Find your cause and give today, April 1, at 401Gives.org.
- If you're offering an incentive to employees or customers: [Business name] is supporting #401Gives on April 1 and offering a gift basket to any customer that gives today. Stop on in today after you give through 401Gives.org and show us your receipt to be eligible!
- Celebrate the success you achieved for the day: Wow. We are in awe of the amazing employees and customers we have. Collectively, we were able to raise $X with X donors for the nonprofits participating in #401Gives. We couldn't do this without all of you, and your amazing support of our community and the nonprofits you all chose to give to on 401Gives. Thank you.
Share pictures of your business, employees, and customers participating in 401Gives on Instagram. If your having a dress down day in the office, offering a raffle, or hosting (or encouraging attendance at) an event, share all of these events on Instagram! Make sure you're using the hashtag so people can keep up: #401Gives!
Social media is a great tool for spreading the word to people that follow you on social media, however, there is no substitute for a direct, targeted email to your employees, customers, or even personal network. Consider sending emails that correspond to your social media activity, as well as direct targeted asks. Here is a sample email to get you thinking on how you want to spread the word!
Subject: Help us support the nonprofits who make this community great! Join [BUSINESS NAME] for #401Gives
On April 1 businesses and individuals across our Rhode Island community will come together to support our local nonprofits during 401Gives. We are so excited to be part of this exciting giving event as a business fundraiser to show everyone in the community how philanthropic our employees and customers are.
Haven’t heard about 401Gives? It is Rhode Island's 24-hour giving day supporting the nonprofit agencies who help make our community such a great place to live! [Stats about previous year results]. You can head to 401Gives.org now to learn more about this amazing giving event.
[IF OFFERING MATCH]: Your donations to local nonprofits at 401Gives.org will be amplified because we are offering bonus dollars as an incentive to give. [Describe program here i.e. dollar for dollar, up to a certain amount, lump sum to reach goal etc.]
There are so many ways to participate - spread the word about this amazing event, become a fundraiser for your favorite nonprofit, donate on April 1. Make supporting your favorite cause unique to you!
To make sure your gift [is matched / is counted in our business's totals], follow these steps:
- Find your favorite nonprofit! Visit 401Gives.org to search hundreds of participating nonprofits in our community.
- Commit to a nonprofit. You can start donating as soon as the site opens on April 1. Remember to select [Business Name] at checkout!
- Spread the word! Let your network know about 401Gives and who you are supporting. Use the hashtag #401Gives to be part of the conversation.
For questions about 401Gives and how you can get involved please visit 401Gives.org or contact [Business Name].