How #GivingTuesday Can Usher in Year-End Fundraising

It may sound counter-productive, but you can use #GivingTuesday as a kick-starter to your year-end fundraising campaign. Both methods are proven to raise funds successfully on their own, but if you are going to create separate campaigns for two different events, you might as well let one lead you to the other, optimizing the giving season kicked off by #GivingTuesday. Here are some ways you can tie them in together:

Pre-#GivingTuesday Planning ideas:

In addition to your #GivingTuesday campaign plan, there are some additional steps you can add to ensure a seamless transition to your year-end fundraising campaign. These ideas can provide unique ways for donors to show their support and eye-catching methods to share your results.

  • Create a #GivingTuesday thank you to your supports which not only shows your gratitude for their donation, but includes your end of the year financial goals;
  • Always be sure to point out the benefit of charitable tax deductions in tax planning;
  • To prove to supporters that their #GivingTuesday donation was valuable, provide results from the campaign, showing how it made a difference in your organization’s annual fundraising goals;
  • Consider stepping outside of the box for the #GivingTuesday campaign (and to differentiate it from your year-end plan) by asking for something tangible the charity can use which they can donate (cell phones, animal shelter needs, school supplies);
  • To draw in a different kind of supporter, ask for time (volunteering) instead of money; this also helps to avoid drawing attention away from year-end goal.

Post-#GivingTuesday concepts:

As soon as #GivingTuesday is over, most nonprofits are ready to switch gears and focus on year-end fundraising campaigns. However, don’t neglect this golden opportunity to celebrate your achievements and show appreciation to all those who made it possible.

  • Include #GivingThanksTuesday or #ThankfulWednesday as a part of your campaign;
  • Include a link to your year-end goal page or draw attention to a specific goal you have promoted throughout the current year, showing where you stand after #GivingTuesday;
  • Tell a compelling story, customized for your year-end campaign, including proof of what has been achieved during the calendar year and what is still needed to usher in the new year;
  • Now that you have data worth sharing, do it! Let your community (sponsors, volunteers and employees) know numbers that show successes (and even where there is still need) like dollars raised, number of new donors, etc.;
  • Write your year-end email story about a beneficiary of the cause (like from a shelter animal, community leader who understands the need, or an individual who would personally benefit).

Where to Focus Special Attention:

All your supporters are deserving of your attention. However, there are certain segments…and activities…which need to be concentrated on due to the loyalty and dollar amounts they give or bring in. Don’t sit back and ASSUME that they will give simply because they have done so in the past.

  • Contact your long-standing, big dollar, and volunteer donors personally, telling them how much you appreciate & need their support. Since they have been a veritable part of your team for years, need this reminder;
  • Reach out to your corporate sponsors. Tell them how their support has made a difference during the year, and talk to them about matching funds with their employees;
  • Keep up with your year-end newsletter, but use it to celebrate goals reached and share a few specific year-end needs, separating fundraising messages to their own communication;
  • Ask your monthly donors for year-end support, suggesting they help you to finish the year strong, or to move up to next donor “level” (be sure to promote the benefits of that level);
  • Strengthen (or create) your Social Media Ambassador group—a group of dedicated board members, volunteers and supporters—with material, or even a mini-campaign specifically for them, to promote your goals;
  • Make sure all your donation acceptance tools are working efficiently. Although direct mail still reigns supreme for year-end appeals, more supporters are choosing to pay via mobile options;
  • Boost your online presence; an online platform like Lets Sponsor provides you with a method to reach and expand your community, provide year end gratitude and recognition, and an integrated payment gateway to accept payments with little cost to you.

Ready, Set, Give!

You can see how #GivingTuesday leads into your year-end fundraising campaign. These ideas will help you balance the two campaigns, weaving them together but still focusing on your target—reaching your year-end financial goal while expanding and continuing engagement with your nonprofit donating community. Don’t neglect to celebrate your achievements, no matter how small, and share stories which compel visitors to give, either money or time or both. And remember to keep building your online community with a strong social media and website presence. Let’s Sponsor can help with tools to create a network of supporters sharing your mission.