How To Fundraise During Uncertain Times

So many are asking me if it’s ok to fundraise right now.  I think it depends on what your area is going through at the moment.  For instance, last week at The River in Columbus we started out with record breaking numbers but on Wednesday and Thursday the Governor did a press conference and began shutting down the different things including no more than 100 people were allowed to get together for an event.  So we had Universities shutting down, all of the schools about to close, churches shutting down services, companies sending employees home etc…. There was panic in the air.  The fundraising became tough.  No doubt we could have continued to raise money but really felt we needed to shut down the fundraiser and just provide hope an encouragement on the last day.

I have personally advised a few more stations to push back their event if possible.

So, yes you can fundraise during this time but I think it really depends on what your community is facing.  This is a time for your station to shine.  We all brand ourselves as a place that provides hope and encouragement.  We want to be the safe place for those in our communities and this is the perfect opportunity if you are able to just focus on that instead of fundraising.

I have found through the years that when you push back your fundraiser and put the listener first, you will experience a lot of good will.  Listeners don’t forget when you put off fundraising in order to serve their family.  I have always found the money will find you and usually more than you expected because of the good will that you built up with your listeners.

Again, I am not making a blanket statement that no fundraising should happen.  Only you know what is right for your station.  I am highly suggesting if you find your community in panic, displaced and out of their normal schedule, then delay your fundraiser for a few more weeks.

So I think the real question is not can we still raise money, but is it the right time to be asking for money instead of just being a source of hope.  For many states this would not be the time to be asking for money in my opinion.  So take the time to look into what is going on in your market and make it a matter of prayer before you jump into your fundraiser this month.

Bill Scott
Vidare Creative

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