Fundraising Tips

Together we can ensure that rare cancer research gets the support it deserves. Every dollar raised goes directly to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center to fund lifesaving research on rare cancers. Use these tips to help you reach—and surpass—your fundraising goal. Asking for support may be easier than you think!

Tip 01

Make sure to tell all of your donors that 100% of their donation to Cycle for Survival will go directly to rare cancer research.

Tip 02
Change Your Mindset

Rare cancers touch most of our lives. While you are asking for donations, you’ll be surprised at who might thank you for this opportunity to make an impact.

Tip 03
Rally Your Team

Create an email or Facebook group to share stories, words of encouragement, key fundraising learnings—and encourage your teammates to do the same.

Tip 04
Give to Yourself

The best way to encourage others to give is to show them that you've donated to your own efforts first. Make a kick-off gift!

Tip 05
Make it Personal

Tell YOUR story about why you ride. The Participant Center provides you with templates of suggested language, but the more personal you make your asks, the more people will relate—everyone has been touched by cancer.

Tip 06
Ask, Ask, Ask!

You don't get what you don't ask for, so make sure you are asking! Donations don't always come from where you expect them, so cast a wide net and make each ask personal! See email templates in your Participant Center.

Tip 07
Show Your Gratitude

Say thank you early and often to your donors. Update them on your progress and show them the impact they are having. Help encourage others by saying thank you publicly as well. Facebook is great for that! See email templates in your Participant Center.

Tip 08
Get Social

You'll be surprised at the support you'll receive from a Facebook post, Tweet, Instagram photo, or Cycle for Survival YouTube video. Use the Facebook, Twitter, and e-mail share buttons on your personal fundraising page, and if you’re still looking for social media tips e-mail!

Tip 09
Think BIG

Ask for specific amounts from people you know can make bigger gifts, and don't be afraid to follow up with a phone call or an in-person meeting. Need advice on how to ask for these gifts? Just e-mail our team at!

Tip 10
Follow Up

Most people are willing to give, even just a small amount, but need the reminder. Just because they didn't initially respond doesn't mean that they don't want to support you. It's okay to follow up!

Tip 11
Meet for Coffee

Meet face-to-face with some of your potential donors. Nothing is more personal or effective than sitting down and having a conversation.

Tip 12
Wear Your Gear

It's a great excuse to talk to people about the event, the cause and why you ride.

Tip 13
Team T-Shirts

As a public way to thank your donors, have team t-shirts made to wear at your ride and list all donors on the back!

Tip 14
Double Your Impact

Matching gifts are a great way to double, and sometimes even triple your impact! Make sure you and your donors check with your respective Human Resources departments to see if they'll match. Questions? View our matching gifts guide >

Tip 15
Special Events

Donate your birthday, anniversary or any other special occasion to Cycle for Survival—and ask people to give in amount of the year you are celebrating (or more!). We’ve even had a bride-to-be host her bachelorette party at Cycle for Survival.

Tip 16
Share a Video

Our videos are a great tool for spreading the word about and fundraising for Cycle for Survival. Subscribe to our YouTube page and choose a video to send to potential donors and teammates. Then follow up with another video a few weeks later!

Tip 17
Download and Share

Check out the Resources page on our website for downloadable assets like Facebook cover photos, profile pictures, sharable images, branded photos, and more. Doing so will help build awareness about the movement to beat rare cancers.

Tip 18
Table Setting

Is a holiday coming up? How about a special event? One participant integrated a donation ask as part of her Thanksgiving table setting!

Top Team
Cycle for Survival 2015
top fundraising teams
will receive

New Balance ultra half-zip pullovers for reaching the $10,000 per bike fundraising level, and New Balance performance t-shirts for the $5,000 per bike fundraising level.

Fundraising challenges throughout the season give fundraisers the opportunity
to win amazing prizes like

tickets to Late Night with Seth Meyers, the NCAA Final Four and the Tony Awards.

Do you have a fundraising tip that worked well? Tell us about it

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