Customer Story: Well Aware Raises Over 300K in Shower Strike Campaign

Ever considered taking a break from showers to make a difference? Well Aware, a nonprofit led by a group of innovative women, is doing just that and making significant strides in combating water scarcity in East Africa. What sets their projects apart is a perfect success rate, achieved through technical expertise, genuine community engagement, and continuous support. 

Well Aware’s success teaches us valuable lessons in creative and effective fundraising. By combining innovative ideas with community engagement and leveraging technology, we can develop unique initiatives that resonate with our audience and drive meaningful impact. Whether it’s through a quirky challenge like the Shower Strike or by integrating sustainable practices, we think there’s much that can be learned from Well Aware to enhance any organization’s fundraising efforts. Now that this year’s Shower Strike is over, let’s “dive” in! 

The Origin of Shower Strike

In 2010, founder Sarah Evans visited Kenya and saw the devastating effects of dirty water. Moved to action, she and a friend pledged not to shower until they raised enough money to build a well. This bold move sparked the first Shower Strike, now an annual event raising awareness and funds for clean water.

How the Campaign Works

To get a closer look at the evolution of the Shower Strike campaign, we caught up with Dani, the Marketing Manager and Fundraiser at Well Aware. Dani is intimately familiar with the hurdles of running a nonprofit on a tight budget. With issues like burnout and limited staff, she often found herself juggling multiple roles. Despite these obstacles, Well Aware has effectively funded and built clean water systems in East Africa. They’ve achieved this through a comprehensive approach that streamlines the entire process from start to finish. 

This “end-to-end model” means they handle everything from the initial data collection to the build out of the water systems to the final reporting in a seamless way. This integration ensures that all information is easily accessible and well-organized, which is essential for sharing stories with donors and raising funds efficiently. 

The Challenge: Finding the Right Platform

Finding the right platform for the Shower Strike peer-to-peer fundraising campaign has been a significant challenge for the organization. Over the years, Well Aware faced numerous issues with their fundraising platforms, leading them to switch services multiple times in search of a better solution. These issues had several negative effects on both donors and participants:

  • User Experience: Previous platforms were unintuitive, causing frequent questions from participants, known as Shower Strikers. They faced difficulties setting up fundraising pages due to clunky interfaces and poor mobile optimization. This was especially problematic as they relied heavily on social media for campaign promotion, making a mobile-friendly design essential.
  • Customer Support: Slow or unresponsive customer service from other platforms meant that Well Aware often found themselves unsupported during critical moments.
  • Administrative Load: In addition to their normal responsibilities, the Well Aware team frequently had to take on the role of software experts to manage and customize campaign pages. This consumed a significant amount of time that could have been spent on their core mission.

These ongoing challenges made it clear that they needed a fundraising platform that could offer a better user experience, mobile friendliness, responsive customer support, and reduced administrative burden.

The Solution: Switching Back to CauseVox

After trying several platforms, Well Aware decided to return to CauseVox, a decision that proved to be a game-changer for their 2024 Shower Strike campaign. After having their first campaign on CauseVox in 2014, the Well Aware team was thrilled with the results that came from their decision to return to the platform 10 years later. CauseVox addressed all the pain points they had previously encountered, providing a seamless and efficient experience for staff, participants, and donors.

Campaign Functionality

As we take a closer look at campaign functionality, it’s clear how these improvements have transformed the experience for everyone involved.

Streamlined Campaign Management

CauseVox’s drag-and-drop functionality has dramatically simplified the process of building and customizing campaign pages. “On previous platforms, it took me two months to set up our campaign. On CauseVox, it literally only took two days,” Dani shared in our post-campaign conversation with a big grin. This shift allowed the team to devote more time to their core mission instead of wrestling with software. During the recruitment phase for peer-to-peer fundraisers, the ability to easily update and rearrange content ensured that the most compelling stories were always front and center.

Photo Carousel

(Shower Strike’s main campaign page with photo carousel)

The first thing you see when you go to the campaign page is a photo carousel displaying engaging images of participants holding rubber duckies and shower accessories, all while having a great time. This not only livened up the presentation but also effectively highlighted the extensive reach and joyful spirit of the campaign.

Impact Metric

(Noblesville Tankers fundraising page)

Another critical campaign component was an impact metric, which Well Aware had not been able to implement on other platforms. This feature allowed them to clearly display the total funds raised and number of people impacted, not just for the overall campaign but also for individual fundraisers.

(Shower Strike 2024’s donation tiers)

Set up in the backend, the system calculated that every $20 donated translated into one person receiving clean water. This straightforward metric provided a tangible sense of the direct effect of each donation, enhancing donor engagement by making the impact of their contributions immediately clear.

Automated Matching

With the automated matching feature developed by CauseVox in collaboration with Well Aware, doubling the impact of donations became as simple as a click. This tool recognized corporate sponsors, and optimized match days to enhance the effectiveness of contributions. 

(1:1 match from Tito’s)

For example, consider the impact of Tito’s 1:1 match. Normally, a $20 donation provides one person with clean water for life. But thanks to Tito’s generosity, that same $20 stretched to assist two people, effectively doubling the benefit. This enhancement not only accelerated strikers’ progress towards their fundraising goals but also offered donors a vivid, real-time view of the difference their money is making. 

Departing from the cumbersome manual matching processes of the past, this automated feature significantly smoothed out the donation experience, adding a layer of satisfaction and engagement for everyone involved.

(1:1 match from Spectrum Brands)

Enhanced User Experience

The seamless management of the CauseVox platform led to a significantly enhanced user experience. Setting up peer-to-peer pages became notably smoother, reducing the time staff needed to spend on troubleshooting. On the backend, the admin team could effectively monitor which strikers were in the setup phase and which were active, allowing them to provide targeted support. Participants particularly appreciated the ability to customize their campaign pages by changing photos, which deepened their personal connection to the campaign.

The intuitive, mobile-optimized design addressed past issues with non-intuitive interfaces and setup struggles, making it ideal for social media-driven campaigns, and shower strikers to share their efforts with ease.

(Shower Strike’s Impact page)

The support for multiple pages on the campaign site through CauseVox simplified information organization for donors, enabling them to navigate different aspects of the campaign without feeling overwhelmed. This cohesive system greatly improved interactions across various campaign facets, enhancing the overall experience for both strikers and donors.

Online Fundraising Toolkit

Another key improvement that significantly enhanced the donor experience was Well Aware’s ability to include a comprehensive online fundraising toolkit on the campaign site. Understanding the challenges of fundraising, Well Aware crafted a detailed toolkit to support participants through every step of the process. Unlike previous years where resources were scattered and often overlooked on Google Drive, this toolkit centralized everything needed for a successful Shower Strike campaign—from email and social media templates to engaging pictures, water facts, and tips on skipping showers—directly on the website.

(Shower Strike’s hosted fundraising toolkit)

This move to host the toolkit online transformed it into a highly effective, easily accessible hub that was greatly appreciated by both donors and participants. It ensured that everyone involved was well-prepared and confident in their fundraising efforts, marking a notable improvement from the past.

Data and Reporting

CauseVox’s robust reporting tools enabled Well Aware to track and analyze campaign data more efficiently. The ability to customize data columns, export reports, and save configurations simplified the monitoring of progress and facilitated informed decision-making. This feature was particularly vital for staff members responsible for presenting detailed reports to corporate partners and recurring donors.

Results: A Record-Breaking Campaign

At the end of the day, switching to CauseVox led to Well Aware’s most successful Shower Strike campaign ever, raising over $307,000 and impacting more than 15,000 people with clean water. Dani herself exceeded her fundraising target of $7,500 by raising $7,620, more than quadrupling her previous best of $1,500. This outstanding result highlighted the effectiveness of CauseVox in boosting the fundraising efforts and overall success of the campaign.

(Dani’s personal fundraising page)

The platform’s user-friendly nature allowed the team to concentrate on fundraising instead of troubleshooting, which greatly reduced burnout and enhanced engagement with participants and donors.

To recap the key achievements of this campaign:

  • Reduced Admin Time: Building the campaign on CauseVox took only two days as opposed to two months on previous platforms.
  • Increased Participant Satisfaction: There were minimal questions from new participants, and feedback on the ease of page setup was overwhelmingly positive.
  • Enhanced Donor Engagement: The clear display of impact metrics and the automated matching feature increased donor satisfaction and engagement.
  • Higher Fundraising Totals: The streamlined process and improved user experience contributed to record-breaking fundraising totals.

Embrace Future Challenges with Confidence

Well Aware’s 2024 Shower Strike campaign is a testament to the power of innovative fundraising and the right technology. Based on a recent study by CauseVox, 71% of donors are open to helping organizations they support fundraise, underscoring the importance of providing tools that empower donors to actively participate. By switching back to CauseVox, the Well Aware team not only overcame past challenges but also set new benchmarks for success. The seamless integration of CauseVox’s peer-to-peer fundraising capabilities and bespoke services has empowered Well Aware to focus on what they do best: providing sustainable water solutions and changing lives in East Africa.

Dani concluded our conversation with these words of gratitude: “I am so happy we found CauseVox because it has made my job so much easier. I am excited to continue working with CauseVox and to see what we can accomplish together in the future. This has been a great kick-off to our partnership.”

We couldn’t agree more!

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