It's Not Too Early to Start Planning Your Year-End Giving Campaign

The early bird gets the end of the year donation. Now is the time to start your end of the year giving campaign. Why? Because research indicates that nonprofits receive 50 percent of their annual donations between October and December. Plus, 74 percent of donors give at this time because “the holidays are the perfect time to give to those in need.” Plan something extra special for this extra special giving time of the year. Here are some tips and ideas to help.

1.  Plan and Learn From Previous Years:  Planning is the key to the success of any marketing plan, and this includes nonprofits. Start early (September or before) review the past years' campaigns and use results to strategically map out this year's holiday campaign. For example, record who your best donors were, who are your prospects for this year and analyze the overall campaign. You can learn from the past if you analyze what worked, what didn't and use it to fine-tune this year's strategy.

Tip: Research other nonprofits' end of year campaigns. Doing so may inspire ideas for your campaign. 

2.  Set Fundraising Goals:  Based on your overall annual marketing strategy, what are your goals for your year-end giving campaign. Is it to raise money, create awareness for your nonprofit, nurture new prospects or a combination of all the above? Recruit your best donors to help you meet your goals. Ask them to help you spread the good word about your nonprofit. This is awesome word of mouth and will engage your donors in a positive way because they will share stories and testimonials on why others should donate.

Tip:  Post goals so everyone on your team can view the progress each month.

3.  Create a Campaign Theme: Storytelling is an excellent way to engage donors and can help with your branding. Create a campaign theme based on your nonprofit's story. When you share all your great work, how you are making a positive impact on people's lives including testimonials, you are creating a story that will resonate in donors' minds.

Tip: Create the story that includes small ways your nonprofit helps others so all donors whether they can give $1.00 or thousands will feel like their gift is impacting lives.

4.  Spread the Word:  Create a marketing calendar and record all of your goals, events, mailings, social media posts, website updates, emails, presentations, #Giving Tuesday activities, etc. so you know exactly what is happening for any particular day. Start with the campaign's launch date. Studies show that nonprofits who launch their year-end campaigns on #GivingTuesday will raise five times more during year end.

Tip: #GivingTuesday is a collaborative, growing global online giving event that can help you gain visibility, roll out your campaign and help you reach your giving goals.

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