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5 Tips to Fundraise Through Charity Streaming

By May 16, 2019

Two members of the DonorDrive staff using Live Fundraising™ at a virtual gaming event to benefit children's hospitals.

By: Ben Clayton, Product Integration Developer at DonorDrive

According to research by the Fundraising Effectiveness Report, overall charitable giving grew by 1.6% over the past year. However, online giving, as tracked by nonprofits fundraising with DonorDrive, grew 9x that—by 15%—over the past year. Giving online is also by far the most popular way to donate, across Millennials, Gen X, and Boomers, with 78% preferring it over other ways to donate.

One creative way to engage supporters online is through fast-growing charity livestreaming, or streaming for short. Why? Mobile-obsessed young adults love video and social content. Online streaming platforms like Twitch are fast gaining attention, with millions of hours of video watched per month. Lucy Bernholz at the Stanford Center on Philanthropy and Civil Society has predicted that in 2019, “Giving via video game platforms and streaming sites such as Twitch will get mainstream attention.“ Nonprofits can leverage this growing channel: Streamers on Twitch have raised over $85 million for nonprofits in total, with $30 million raised in 2018 alone.

What’s been missing in general live streaming platforms like Twitch, though, are features that make it simple for fundraisers to integrate fundraising with their streams. That’s where it can help to have tools that give you the ability to closely interact with your supporters and raise more for your cause, like Live Fundraising by DonorDrive.

Why should your charity encourage fundraising through streaming?

According to a Twitch survey, 78% of their users want to see more charity streaming. Audiences want to know about causes and help support nonprofits in their missions. We’ve already seen substantial growth in charity streaming. By late February 2019, nonprofits fundraising with DonorDrive saw more than 15,000 fundraisers connect Live Fundraising. This is having a big impact in overall fundraising, since streamers are raising 243% more than those who don’t connect. Nonprofits on DonorDrive saw a 21% year-over-year increase in the total raised by supporters who turned on Live Fundraising. Many organizations, even those with traditional events, are adopting streaming to drive more fundraising during these events.

Live stream fundraising

Want to get started? Here are 5 tips to start fundraising through streaming.

    1. Determine which streaming platform your supporters are likely to use
    The leading platforms in the streaming space are Twitch, YouTube, and Mixer. To gain the most impact, give your supporters fundraising tools that they can use directly in their stream, and the flexibility to connect the stream of their choice to their fundraising page for your event.

    2. Make it simple for streamers to set up fundraising
    Prompt your fundraisers to connect their stream to their fundraising page. Also, create a step-by-step guide to help streamers to get started for those new to streaming. The easier you make it to connect streaming and fundraising, the quicker your supporters will start using it.

    3. Equip your supporters to tell your story
    The better you provide your fundraisers with messaging, media, and branding, the better they’ll succeed. They’ll need talking points, impact statements, and examples of what a dollar can accomplish. One way to do this is by embedding your stream into their fundraising page that’s branded for your organization, get real-time alerts to keep viewers engaged, and customize their streams with built-in, branded assets.

    4. Connect your tools so that you can leverage your data
    Check to see if your streaming platform has a bulk export API. This will make it easy to easily sync data into platforms like Nonprofit Cloud, including custom fields and form questions. Connecting DonorDrive with Salesforce will give you a bigger picture of your streamers’ impact on revenue.

    5. Create a great experience
    For streaming-based fundraising, it helps to pick a tool that enables you to serve donors, staff, and fundraisers equally well. Some of the most useful functions in live streaming are ones that make it easy to recognize donors for their donations in the stream, ways for donors to give directly in-stream, data integration with Salesforce, and assurance that the money makes it to the charity.

It’s a whole new world out there for nonprofit fundraisers. Live streaming charity fundraisers is reinventing online fundraising.

For more fundraising resources, check out this recent fundraising research on how to be a more productive fundraiser.


DonorDrive is an official AppExchange Partner. Find their app, DonorDrive, on the AppExchange.

About the Author
Ben Clayton is an Integration Developer at DonorDrive and the driving force behind the <a href="" rel="noopener noreferrer" target="_blank">Live Fundraising™</a> feature.Ben Clayton is Product Integration Developer at DonorDrive. He’s responsible for building the DonorDrive App for Salesforce. Ben came up with the idea of DonorDrive’s Live Fundraising™ and was instrumental in seeing the feature come to life.