The Youth on Course 100 Hole Hike offers both the unforgettable experience of conquering the hardest physical and mental challenge in golf, along with the rewarding feeling of raising money to support the next generation of young golfers.
While fundraising may seem daunting, there are plenty of ways to achieve your goal! With some advanced planning and a few small steps taken consistently, you can hit your target and make a huge impact.
We’ve put together a list of helpful tips for fundraising success:
1. Decide on who you’ll ask for donations.
The very best place to start with your fundraising efforts is by writing down a list of your friends, family, colleagues, golf buddies, etc. who you’d plan to ask for a donation towards your Hike. Keep in mind that someone doesn’t have to play golf or even know much about the sport to feel compelled to give. Save the list and use it as a reference to keep track of who you may want to follow-up with after your initial ask.
2. Tell your own story.
If you’re participating in the 100 Hole Hike it’s likely because somewhere along the way someone has contributed towards making your life better in some way. Whether the time you spent on the golf course as a kid made an impact on the person you are today or you want to be sure that as many young people as possible have access to enjoy the sport you’ve grown to love, sharing your “why” with your audience of prospective donors will help them feel even more compelled to give towards your Hike.
Our Chief Development Officer shares a few helpful talking points for talking about Youth on Course and with your potential donors here:
3. Pose donations as a challenge (because it is).
If your network of friends is a competitive one, why not pose donating towards your Hike as a challenge? Give them the opportunity to decide how much they’ll donate as a “pledge” based on the number of holes you complete. For example, “Do you think I can play 100 holes in one day? Are you willing to give me $1, $5, etc. per hole?” Whether they give based on how many holes you complete, or up the ante by adding donations for every birdie, eagle or ace you get during the day, it makes for a fun way to engage your network and to encourage them to follow-along with how you do the day of your Hike.
4. Create a fundraising game plan and schedule.
Our most successful Hikers create a game plan and schedule for when and how they’ll announce they’re taking part in the 100 Hole Hike, send out asks for donations, follow-ups to those who haven’t yet donated along what they’ll share on social media leading up to and on the day of their Hike. For helpful sample emails, ideas, and social media graphics you can use and share, explore the Hiker resources available in the 100 Hole Hike app.
5. Donate to your own hike.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but being the first person to donate to your own Hike is a great way to help get the momentum going. Plus, people are more willing to donate if they know you believe in the mission. 🙂
6. Email your contacts and ask for a specific donation.
One of the most effective ways to fundraise for a Hike is by emailing your contacts with a personalized ask. Tell them why you’ve taken on the challenge of playing 100 holes of golf in one day along with when and where you’ll be Hiking – you can even invite them to come out and cheer you on! You can ask for a specific donation amount or leave it up to them to choose how much they feel compelled to give.
7. Post regularly about your Hike on social media (and be sure to add your fundraising link to your social profile).
Once people hear that you’ll be playing 100 holes of golf in one day, they’ll be curious about your motivation for taking on the challenge along with your process for preparing for the physical challenge. Posting regularly on social media about your Hike is a great way to notify and remind your networks about your efforts. You can use a tool like bitly.com to shorten your fundraising URL so it can fit within the link section of your Instagram or Twitter profiles.
8. Recruit a local or corporate sponsor.
The 100 Hole Hike offers a unique opportunity for local businesses to support a great cause, and it makes for a fun story for them to share too! If you have ties to companies in your area who you think would be willing to make a gift towards your Hike, be sure to ask. They could also match what you raise!
9. Ask your company to match donations.
Does your employer offer matching gifts towards the charities its employees support? If so, it offers another great boost towards reaching your fundraising goal. If you’re unsure about whether you and your donors’ companies offer charitable matching, visit the Double the Donation website to see if they’re listed as a participating company.
10. Thank your donors, and invite them to join next year.
Fundraising doesn’t have to stop once your Hike ends. We always recommend sending a special note of gratitude to your donors and friends following the 100 Hole Hike to thank them for their support. Take it a step further by inviting them to learn more about the 100 Hole Hike and take on the challenge themselves next year.
If there’s anything we can do to help, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team!