Batten Down the Hatches! Year-End Fundraising is Upon Us…

December 15, 2017

Can you believe that 2018 is almost here?

With only 18 days to go until the end of December, nonprofits are scrambling in a pursuit to maximize their year-end fundraising results. I’ve dropped the surprising year-end stats before…

Some organizations manage to raise nearly 70% of their donations during those critical last six weeks of the year alone! And roughly 12% of ALL charitable contributions made in December occur on the 31st of the month!

So what can you do to increase your year-end support? Do these few things and you can minimize your overwhelm and while ramping up your year-end fundraising revenue.

1. Is your website ready?

Consider a “home page takeover” like this.  You know that yes, online giving is  growing because of how accessible and easy it is. Or how easy and accessible it’s supposed to be. So how easy are you making it for your donors to give online? Here’s a tip: give two (or more) of your friends $10 and ask them to donate to your nonprofit online, via your website. Ask them to be brutally honest in their feedback. What you might think of as a fast and easy user experience could actually often benefit from some tweaking. You’re also a great judge of what works and what doesn’t, so make that $10 gift on your own time and observe what it’s like to walk through the process. What does the donor experience look like?
Be sure to download this donation page checklist from our Basics & More Online Fundraising class and add it to your arsenal of tools! Go over yours with a fine-toothed comb and you’ll have a great guide that will help you further evaluate and tweak your page accordingly.

2. Is your email ask series ready to go?

Download our Year-End Email Series Template (the exact guide I use to create my clients email series) to make sure you’ve got all bases covered!

3. Have you adjusted your signature line?

Make it personal and create email signature lines for each of your board and staff members. Nancy Schwartz of Getting Attention writes:  “Email signatures (a.k.a. sig lines) are powerful, low-cost, high-return marketing tools (a virtual business card or ad) for your foundation or organization. What’s interesting is how seldom sig lines are used.”

4. Redo your year-end thank you email.

This What’s In My Inbox blog post from a few years ago sheds a lot of light on how to do it.

5. Don’t forget the phones!

Yes, some donors want to reach out by telephone, and sometimes, they even want to give you money that way. Keep the lines open for communication and make sure you have someone covering the phones on December 31 to answer questions and accept donations.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Ileana December 18, 2017 at 1:53 am

Great article on ramping up year-end fundraising revenue. Create a good Email template which covers all the information you want to convey to your mailers. Also as you said having an Email signature in the mail is really important as it works as a business ad or card.

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