Estimated reading time: 3 minutes, 35 seconds

challengeThere are so many types of campaigns out there designed to help you raise lots of money in a short amount of time. For example, giving day and voting campaigns. But did you know that Charity Challenges are one of the most effective ways to raise a lot of money for your cause? Let’s dig into why they’re so great.

What is a Charity Challenge?
A Charity Challenges is a friendly fundraising competitions where charities compete to win both cash prizes in the form of grand prizes and weekly prizes. It works by using seed money usually furnished by a foundation or corporation to encourage organizations to reach out to their supporters and raise as much money as they can. Challenges were designed to help organizations gain awareness, recognition, and most importantly, donations. And they work really well.

Nonprofits love the Challenge model compared to other competition style campaigns for a lot of reasons.

In a ‘get the most votes to win the big donation’ type campaign….

  • Typically, the nonprofit with the most votes wins and gets the majority, if not all, of the prize money.

  • If your charity doesn’t win, you end up with nothing since votes don’t have any value after the campaign

  • Charities end up spending just as much time and bandwidth in these types of campaigns compared to a Charity Challenge

  • In a ‘get the most likes to win the big donation’ type campaign it’s the same story….

  • The nonprofit with the most like wins and gets the majority of the prize money.

  • And those charities that don’t get the most likes end up with a few more likes, but those likes are unlikely to turn into real donations in the future.

  • Again, the amount of time that is spent to compete in a ‘likes’ competition is about equal to running another campaign or competing in a Charity Challenge

  • That’s why one of the best parts of participating in a Charity Challenge is that you keep the money you raise, whether you win or you lose.

    Let’s break it all down.
    A Charity Challenge usually runs over the course of 4-8 weeks. During that time, charities are encouraged to reach out to their supporters and raise as much money as they can. When the Challenge ends, the charities that raise the most will each get a grand prize cash donation from the Challenge sponsor.

    In addition, the good challenges have weekly Bonus Challenges which are almost like mini competitions designed to give every nonprofit more opportunities to win cash money. For example, a Bonus Challenge might be ‘Every charity that gets at least 10 donations this week will be entered for a chance to win a $2,000 donation.’ And, with Bonus Challenges and overall grand prizes, even if you don’t win one of them or place in the overall Challenge, you still keep the money that you raise.

    All the benefits
    By engaging with your supporters and leveraging the exposure of the Challenge sponsor, participating in a Charity Challenge is a huge opportunity to gain exposure, new donors, and most importantly, funds for your cause. That’s why you’ll want to look for a platform that makes it easy for nonprofits of all sizes to use the power of social fundraising to take your efforts even further during a Challenge.

    If the Challenge platform helps out in every possible way, that’s another win-win. For example, is your platform providing each nonprofit with a Challenge toolkit, a customizable fundraising page, sample messaging and calendars, webinars, customer support, and many other tools in order to help make participating in a Challenge super successful for your cause?

    Challenges are already gearing up for our 2017 Holiday season.. By participating in a Holiday Charity Challenge, you’ll be able to leverage this competition to raise even more money over #GivingTuesday and the holiday season. So find one that’s right for you today.


    Gary Wohlfeill is the director of Brand & Marketing at CrowdRise. He works with partners to develop highly engaging fundraising campaigns and leads the marketing team in developing the CrowdRise brand. Gary has been named as having the “third best haircut of people under 6 feet tall at CrowdRise" and hopes one day to slip to fourth.

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