11 Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas to Boost Your Campaign

11 Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas to Boost Your Campaign

Peer to peer fundraising ideasPeer-to-peer fundraising can be successful on its own or as part of a larger event. The cost of holding a peer-to-peer fundraiser is minimal, and that is why more nonprofits are choosing to add these campaigns to their strategic plans. Many nonprofits have increased their outreach, raised more funds, and strengthened relationships with supporters through these campaigns.

This article will give you 11 creative peer-to-peer fundraising ideas to try yourself, broken into popular categories.

  1. A-thon events
  2. Pub crawls
  3. Game night
  4. Scavenger hunt
  5. Awareness campaigns
  6. Honor someone
  7. Viral video challenges
  8. Birthday fundraisers
  9. Holiday giving
  10. Holiday parties
  11. The give it up challenge

Effective Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas for Events

peer-to-peer fundraising events

Thanks to the invention of social media and peer-to-peer campaigns, nonprofits can raise more money during their annual events than ever before. The following peer-to-peer campaign ideas turn a local event into one that can be shared worldwide and used to spread an organization’s mission to a brand new audience.


1. A-thon events

A-thon events have been a go-to for many nonprofits. Many nonprofits assumed they’d have to cut these events during the pandemic, but others saw it as an opportunity to invite their supporters to raise funds online.

Nonprofits that added peer-to-peer campaigns as part of a run or walk gave participants an easier way to collect pledges and donations online. By streaming the event online, they found another way to excite their donor base.

Nonprofits that canceled their regular events were still able to raise funds. Participants ran or walked on their own for a predetermined amount of time and collected pledges and donations to encourage them on the way.

Both versions of this type of event can be used for runs, walks, biking, and swimming competitions. Peer-to-peer campaigns can also be included in an annual golf or bowling outing to gain more players, acquire new donors, and raise more funds.

Check the below peer-to-peer campaign for a great example. It’s based on a 222-mile walkathon for veterans and first responder communities.

peer to peer fundraising examples


2. Pub crawls

Pub crawls are another popular fundraising idea. Attendees of pub crawls pay for tickets to the event, but the tickets are often in exchange for free drinks.

Your nonprofit can create a community of crawlers online who share images and funds raised for your organization with peer-to-peer fundraising. They will share pictures taken at each bar online and raise money from their friends and family.

If the event is held offline, nonprofits may connect with bars in their area and ask crawlers to visit these locations for a free drink on their own time. This way, the bars get the business, and your nonprofit can sell tickets.

Pro tip: Include competition and prizes as part of the event to entice more participation. Everyone must join the group on event day or take a picture of themselves in each bar and share it on your organization’s Facebook page.


3. Game night

Game nights are a fun event for school groups. Adding peer-to-peer campaigns to this type of event may be easier than you think. Students can be asked to create peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns online and share them with their friends and family. On the game night, you can reward the ones with the most donations.

Since most young people are more comfortable online, holding a virtual game night and raising funds with peer-to-peer campaigns can be a way to gain more participation from students and educate them about fundraising and finances.

Game nights can once again be added to an in-person event or held entirely online. With a bit of preparation, you can find ways to stream an event or share a game using Facebook Live or Zoom.


Best Virtual Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas

peer to peer fundraising campaigns

Below are a few virtual peer-to-peer campaign ideas you can hold entirely online.


4. Scavenger hunt

GeoCaching has taken scavenger hunts to the next level. Instead of limiting a game to only your friends, people can now find and leave a trinket for strangers around the world. This new take on scavenger hunts has turned them from kids-only games to fun for all-ages events.

Nonprofits can take this idea and run with it! Hold a scavenger hunt for your supporters and their friends virtually and in your community. Incorporate some in-person finds with online searches.

Ask your volunteers and supporters to fundraise with their own peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns online before the scavenger hunt night. They should also invite their donors to the virtual event. This way, you’ll not only gain new donors but also have an opportunity to engage them.

Include a compelling prize at the end and a few smaller prizes during the game to keep people engaged.

Pro tip: Use this opportunity to educate long-time and new supporters on how the organization started and the type of people you help.


5. Awareness campaigns

Education and spreading a nonprofit’s mission are the primary goals of an awareness campaign. Nonprofits are finding fundraising success during these campaigns by adding a peer-to-peer fundraiser.

Most people take recommendations from their friends and family more seriously than any other form of marketing. Strong supporters of your nonprofit are your best chance of spreading the word about your mission and programs. As they promote your organization to their communities, send them updates, images, and success stories to help them excite more people about the work you do.

Pro tip: Choosing the right volunteers for this type of campaign is crucial. You need people out there sharing the correct information, so be sure to educate them on the nonprofit before the campaign begins.

For example, the below campaign spreads awareness about Sista Afya’s mission of promoting mental wellness for black women in the community.

peer to peer fundraising examples


6. Honor someone

Would you like to honor someone who has recently passed or had a personal achievement? Maybe as a nonprofit, you want to honor someone from your beneficiaries, at the same time help others have a better life through a campaign.

One way to do that is to let your volunteers or board or your existing donors raise funds with peer-to-peer fundraising. You’ll be giving them the opportunity to support and endorse a cause that they care about while also honoring someone’s success story or their life.

Pro-tip: Create a web page for this type of campaign and let people know the option is available. Honoring someone in this way is not well-known, so it is essential to educate your supporters.


7. Viral video challenges

peer to peer fundraising campaigns

The most popular viral video challenge was the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge which raised millions in 2014 and beyond. The concept is simple. Just create a challenge for your supporters, film it, and share it online. ALS was so successful with this challenge because they were able to incorporate their mission into the challenge.

If you use a little creativity to spread your mission, you may be surprised at the outcome. Adding a viral video challenge to your fundraising campaign can help you stand out in a crowded field.

Ask your volunteers or your supporters to start partaking in the challenge and create their own peer-to-peer fundraising pages online. They can upload their videos on their individual campaign pages. Their friends and family can donate and create videos, share them online, and spread the word about this challenge.

Just imagine the number of new supporters you’ll be gaining this way!


8. Birthday fundraisers

If you haven’t seen a birthday fundraiser on your social media feed, you may be living under a rock. This type of peer-to-peer fundraiser is everywhere online. Facebook even offers tools to help people raise more.

Your nonprofit can take advantage of the popularity of this fundraiser by collecting the birthday dates of your supporters and sharing the idea with them as their birthdays get closer.

Pro tip: Send a personal email to wish them a Happy Birthday and let them know how easy it is to raise money online. If they hold a fundraiser for your nonprofit, be sure to add their campaign to your social media pages and publicly wish them a Happy Birthday!


Easy Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Ideas for Year-End Campaigns

peer to peer fundraising campaigns

The holiday season is full of fundraising ideas, and it is also the perfect time for peer-to-peer fundraising. Everyone has someone you always have trouble finding the right gift for. Donating to their favorite nonprofit can be a big hit. Peer-to-peer fundraising lets people raise money for their passions instead of getting another pair of socks.


9. Holiday giving

There are giving days throughout the year, but none are as well-known as those during the holidays. For example, Giving Tuesday. Giving Tuesday is held the Tuesday after Thanksgiving in the US and has quickly become the most important fundraising day of the year for many nonprofits.

By encouraging supporters to promote the nonprofit online and raise funds, your nonprofit can see a significant increase in revenue raised at the end of the year. Check the below Giving Tuesday peer-to-peer campaign for example. The design is neat with a robust donation form, a video, and a description. One like this is sure to grab attention.

peer to peer fundraising examples


10. Holiday parties

Everyone has a Christmas celebration, so why not turn this event into a fundraiser? During our current pandemic, in-person fundraisers are rare, but many families have started to get together to celebrate.

This is an opportunity for you to encourage supporters to fundraise for you. Invite them to create peer-to-peer campaigns and compete to raise the most funds for the organization at their individual holiday parties. Let them share stories and pictures from your organization with their online community.

After the holidays, hold a party to celebrate the campaigns’ success and join together to share in the joy of a new year.


11. The give it up challenge

Peer-to-peer fundraising doesn’t have to end after Christmas. In fact, some nonprofits have found a way to raise funds through their supporters’ New Year’s Resolutions and started the year off on a bang!

Most people give up on their resolutions in a matter of days or weeks. Your nonprofit can change this trend by creating a Give It Up challenge and getting supporters to collect pledges in exchange for meeting specific goals. These campaigns can raise significant amounts at the beginning of the year and strengthen relationships with your supporters because you are helping them too. There are good feelings all around with this type of peer-to-peer fundraiser.


Bonus Resource – A Donorbox Video to Help Charge Up Your Peer-to-Peer Campaigns with The Top Ideas

Are you a great visual learner looking for a quick resource that will help make your peer-to-peer fundraising campaigns work? Then this Donorbox video here is perfect for you –


Final Thoughts

Peer-to-peer fundraising ideas

Peer-to-peer fundraisers have given more power to your supporters than ever before. People who raise funds for an organization are deeply committed and proud of what they’ve accomplished. These fundraisers are building and strengthening relationships between supporters and nonprofits, and helping them acquire new donors.

Donorbox is here to help with all your peer-to-peer fundraising needs. Create a new peer-to-peer campaign or turn your existing campaign on Donorbox into a peer-to-peer one and invite supporters to get started right away.

Visit the Donorbox website to learn more about us and our other advanced fundraising features.

Get insights, tips, and tricks in our blog to make your campaigns a success.

Kristine Ensor is a freelance writer with over a decade of experience working with local and international nonprofits. As a nonprofit professional she has specialized in fundraising, marketing, event planning, volunteer management, and board development.

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