Digital Ads for Fundraising: Basics and Beyond

Digital Ads for Fundraising: Basics and Beyond


Grow your membership program with this intensive training designed to improve your digital advertising skills and practices.

Navigate this page

Most stations engage in some level of digital marketing to support their membership programs. Digital fundraising can feel high-stakes because of the up-front investment required to generate revenue. Membership professionals need to set informed goals, evaluate performance for improvement, and track the ever-changing digital landscape in order to make the most of digital fundraising efforts.

But you don’t have to do it alone!

We’re excited to open our cohort designed to accelerate digital fundraising for membership. Whether you’re just starting to make the case for ads investment or are running a multi-platform program, this program will elevate your digital fundraising program to the next level.

Program Description

Digital Ads for Fundraising is a 5-week, virtual cohort-based intensive training program that pairs virtual classroom sessions with project-based learning.

You’ll learn to:

  • Set realistic goals for digital fundraising ad performance
  • Create and/or direct content to be in line with industry best practices
  • Identify areas where you can optimize and improve digital performance
  • Confidently navigate important stakeholder relationships (leadership, agency partners, etc.)
  • Make an internal business case for additional resources (staff, technology, etc) to support investment in these areas, as needed.

Is This Right for Me?

This cohort is for fundraising professionals who simply manage ads on social media, or who work with an agency or internal partner on digital revenue growth.

Consider signing up if any of these apply to you:

  • I’m concerned about the slowing pace of digital revenue growth and wonder if I’m using my ad dollars ineffectively.
  • I have access to some budget for digital experimentation and I want to use it wisely.
  • I have to manage digital advertising with an agency or internal partner and I need strategies to improve goal-setting and communication.
  • I don’t have enough time to keep up with changing digital advertising landscapes, rules, formats, etc.

About the Instructors

We are M+R: We are communicators, marketers, fundraisers, and campaigners who unleash the power of people to do good.

We have served nonprofits and foundations exclusively for nearly 30 years. More than half of us are dedicated solely to raising money, engaging activists, and creating change for organizations that face a constant struggle to find new supporters and engender loyalty within an increasingly crowded multimedia world. As a digital native agency, paid media, email, web and mobile marketing are what we do day-in, day-out.

M+R has more than 40 experts on staff who specialize entirely on running digital ads for nonprofits. We’ve built multi-million-dollar advertising programs from the ground up, and have taken existing programs and broken new records. Our tightly managed, integrated approach finds donors that organizations have never reached before, and reactivates lapsed supporters that were written off. We regularly pilot new tools, features, vendors, and audiences, so that our advertising programs are continually evolving.


This program meets twice weekly via Zoom:

Course Days: All sessions 1pm-2pm ET, except for June 7.

  • Wednesday, June 7, 2023 (Please note that this session will run from 2pm-3pm ET) 
  • Wednesday, June 14, 2023
  • Wednesday, June 21, 2023
  • Wednesday, June 28, 2023
  • Wednesday, July 5, 2023

Discussion Days: All sessions 1pm-2pm ET

  • Friday, June 9, 2023
  • Friday, June 16, 2023
  • Friday, June 23, 2023
  • Friday, June 30, 2023
  • Friday, July 7, 2023

Program Outline

Session 1: Fundamentals + Search Strategy

Key points:

  • Overall intro to paid media and general budgeting parameters
  • Pros and cons of search channel
  • Paid vs. grant and how they fit together
  • Benchmarks stats
  • Creative best practices and sample cadence for creative refreshes

Exercise: Search sandbox

Session 2: Social & Video Strategy

Key points:

  • Pros and cons of social & video, primarily Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube
  • CTAs/goals such as cultivation, lead generation, or direct fundraising
  • Audience targeting options
  • Benchmarks stats
  • Creative best practices and sample cadence

Exercise: Review video creative

Session 3: Display Strategy

Key points:

  • Pros and cons of display
  • Audience targeting options
  • Benchmarks stats
  • Creative best practices and sample cadence

Exercise: Review display targeting

Session 4: Implementation and Scale, Part 1

Key points:

  • Components you should have in place to support the program while scaling up such
    as a donation form that works well on desktop and mobile, email welcome series,
    Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager accounts
    • Share resources to reference including in-platform guides and trainings
  • Working with agency partners
    • Capabilities to look for and other considerations
      ○ Managing account access
      ○ KPI review and questions to ask when reviewing agency prepared reports

Exercise: Review sample reports

Session 5: Implementation and Scale, Part 2

Key points:

  • Reporting and optimization, continued
    • Common levers to pull to improve performance
  • Budgeting
    • The importance of having flexibility to scale when needed
    • Attribution
  • What are the different attribution models for revenue (view through, click through, etc.) and how to use both for a complete picture of performance

Exercise: Build a media plan

Cost and Registration

Greater Public Members:

  • $649


  • $1,149

The June 2023 cohort Digital Ads for Fundraising: Basics and Beyond is now sold out.

Atlanta - July 11-13

PMDMC 2023

Last chance to register. Don't miss out on connecting with your public media colleagues in-person.

Secure your spot now