|From area school districts and technical schools to colleges and universities, alumni are an essential piece of fundraising for many educational institutions across Canada. Some fundraising efforts are more ambitious than others: from small campaigns to fund new sports equipment at an elementary school to the University of Toronto’s “Boundless” fundraising initiative, which aims to raise $2 billion, with alumni among its prime target audience.Even for seasoned fundraisers, there are still hidden opportunities. One unique audience includes recent graduates. Often overlooked, this group knows how to stay connected. It’s likely you recognize their potential and have already begun to tap your “young” alumni market, but here are a few more ideas to add to your toolkit:Stay in touch|
Grow your alumni connection by staying connected from the very beginning with your recent grads. If you haven’t already, you will want to think about creating a page on your website or through social media channels showcasing their achievements as they progress in their professions! According to Netwits Think Tank blogger Frank Barry, “Schools have a unique opportunity to build their Facebook® following and stay connected with alumni due to the captive audience and deep relationships that are built with students, families and faculty.” A few methods Barry recommends to get students and alumni to interact with you is to entice them with a competition, discount or video only accessible via social media.
Maybe you know a group of alumni who attended your university and have now formed a band that plays at local events and dreams of scoring a record deal someday. Tell them they’re awesome by inviting them to play at a school social or during the half-time show at a game. Give out something fun like pennant to cheer on your school—and the great-sounding alumni it turned out. Print the band’s YouTube® or Facebook® page and Twitter® handle (and yours) so you can grow your support together!
High schools, school districts, colleges—there are opportunities for each to exhibit the successes of their talented “young” alumni. Don’t wait for them to make it to the Olympics or Big Screen. Show your alumni that you care about their successes now and they will be more likely to care about yours down the road!
University of Toronto. Boundless: The Campaign for the University of Toronto Surpasses $1 Billion Raised. 30 Mar. 2012. Web. 5 Sept. 2012.
Barry, Frank. “22 Ways to Stay Connected with Your School’s Alumni on Facebook.” 22 Ways to Stay Connected with Your Schools Alumni on Facebook | NetwitsThinkTank.com. NetwitsThinkTank.com, 11 July 2012. Web. 28 Aug. 2012.
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