#ILGive Case Study: The Good Samaritan Inn

Friday, March 2, 2018

On #ILGive for #GivingTuesday The Good Samaritian Inn in Decatur had a fundraising goal of $7,500. By 8:30am on Giving Tuesday, they'd already raised half of that. We interviewed Kelly Gagnon to discuss how crowdfunding bolstered The Good Samaritan Inn's #ILGive campaign.

The Good Samaritan Inn had a great #ILGive campaign! To what do you attribute your success?

The Good Samaritan Inn:  We had clear messaging, high-quality photos, and direct asks during our campaign. We also engaged our board members to be actively involved in the campaign by providing opportunities for direct, personal solicitations via e-newsletters, edited Facebook videos, and phone call assignments.

What did you do on social media?

The Good Samaritan Inn: Everything! We kept people updated on progress during the day, and reached DOUBLE our original goal!

How did you get the word out about your campaign? (Emailing your existing mailing list? Social media? Social media ads? Something else we haven’t thought about?)

The Good Samaritan Inn: ALL OF THE ABOVE! We also had board members sign board contracts committing to certain level of involvement and specific tasks.

When did first announce your campaign?

The Good Samaritan Inn: Two weeks before. 

Did you have p2p fundraisers?

The Good Samaritan Inn: No, but we had board members do direct solicitations to friends and family.

What other creative things did you try that worked?

The Good Samaritain Inn:  We had Facebook videos of board members talking about how and why they support The Inn. We had photos of the actual children that were benefiting from our Giving Tuesday campaign. 

Did you arrange social media ambassadors?

The Good Samaritan Inn: YES! We saw Giving Tuesday as a good way to get board and staff both involved. We had staff members sign contracts saying they would share at least 4 posts and opt in to being on a live video. The posts all had specific asks to give X which would support X amount of children. Our board also signed contracts committing to sharing at least 4 posts relating to Giving Tuesday to their personal Facebook pages and be on a Facebook video. 

Did you provide them with social media messages that they could copy and paste, or direct them to the messages on the #ILGive website? 

The Good Samaritan Inn: We did not do copy and pasting, we did boosting. However, we also sent out personalized emails through Constant contact on behalf of our board members to their target list (if the board member committed to it). The letters had their signatures and images. This, coupled with social media sharing, was the key to our success.

Were the ambassadors worth the amount of time/effort it takes to wrangle and organize them?

The Good Samaritan Inn: We probably spent less than 40 hours total coordinating the campaign. And, we raised a significant amount of money. The key to the success of our campaign was the planning, organization in messaging, personal touches. We also got real images of the children that were going to be supported!

Learn how to engage your board during Illinois' Spring Giving Day - #ILGiveCommunity Day on May 3! Check out our 15min video on Engaging Your Board and find a toolkit on building board support for your online fundraising campaign on our resources page. Haven't registered for #ILGive Community yet? Nonprofit registration ends April 12. Sign up now!