Step 6: Evaluate Your Success
Based on the desired outcomes you defined earlier, evaluate the success of your campaign. All results are distinct, quantifiable actions. Track how much money the campaign raised, how many people visited your Web site to look at your campaign pages, and how many new people subscribed to your e-newsletter. With this information in hand, you can then begin to analyze data such as:
- Average gift size - comparing online versus offline amounts could be very useful in determining future campaign budgets.
- Conversion rates - the number of site visits that resulted in donations.
- Return on investment - how much money you had to spend online to raise $X online.
- Cost savings. Was it more cost effective to print collateral or to offer it as a download? Did online FAQs reduce the number of customer service calls? Was e-mailing your appeal less expensive than mailing it? Was it more cost effective to process online credit card transactions than to process checks?
Remember that not all of your campaign success is necessarily tied to donations. It is important to track and value demonstrated interest in your Web site. Site visitors can later become loyal donors, and media and press coverage, such as story pick-ups, click-throughs, contact names, and inquiries, can contribute to your brand awareness. Over time, an ongoing dialogue will take hold. Donors and subscribers will come back based on this dialogue, and repeat giving will result.
And finally, to help you with your next online fundraising campaign, keep track of the core issues that came up during the planning and development process.
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