The time has come: the holiday season, which in nonprofit speak translates to fundraising season. In fact, this time of year draws an estimated one-third of nonprofits’ annual funds. You’re probably hunting for strategies to give your nonprofit fundraising efforts an extra punch, so that the year-end of 2017 truly counts.
We’re here to help.
We’ve rounded up five strategies to give your year-end nonprofit fundraising campaigns a solid boost.
Set a Nonprofit Fundraising Goal and Track it
No fundraising campaign should begin without a goal. Set the goal, and explain to your supporters how helping you reach that goal will make an important difference. Will it enable you to serve more people? Put more books into the hands of at-risk youth? Provide more meals to homeless veterans?
Put it in tangible terms so that donors understand how their money will make an impact. Then, regularly communicate to supporters how close you are to reaching your goal, and urge them to help you meet it.
Partner with a Local Restaurant
Ask a local restaurant to fundraise with you for a day during your campaign. Designate a day that supporters can eat at the restaurant, and a portion of the profits will be donated to your organization. Choosing a restaurant with corporate values that align with your mission would make the most sense, but if that doesn’t work out, a nearby restaurant with high visibility and a large community of patrons will work.
Ensure that both your organization and the restaurant publicize the fundraiser, using every means possible.
Launch a Peer-to-Peer Campaign
This holiday season, encourage your supporters to ask their friends and family to donate to your organization instead of purchasing gifts for them. Create downloadable holiday-themed signs for supporters to hold while taking selfies. The signs can read, “All I want for Christmas is $10 for [insert your organization’s name]. Will you give?” Or, “To celebrate the eight days of Hanukkah, I gave $8 to [insert your organization’s name.] Will you do the same?”
Supporters can post their selfies on social media with a link to your branded online giving page, where their friends can donate quickly after seeing their peers’ posts. These small gifts can add up to big returns.
Appeal to Donors Based on History
Soliciting large donations from individuals who have historically donated only small amounts is ineffective. Sort your fundraising data from the past year to segment donors into levels of giving categories. Then, solicit donations based on donors’ giving habits in the past year.
If a donor gave three times, in the amounts of $50, $100, and $75, it would be appropriate to appeal to them for $100 or maybe try for $150. However, appealing for $1,000 or more would likely yield no reward. Always thank donors for past gifts of particular amounts before you ask them for more.
Get Endorsements from Authority Figures
Boost donations by getting an authority figure to endorse your organization. An authority figure might be someone who has led research in your cause, a well known advocate of your mission or a celebrity. People are more likely to donate simply because an authority figure endorses it.
If you can’t get a direct endorsement, then thread your fundraising emails, letters and social media posts with quotes and videos of well reputed research that validates the importance of your work.
Offer a Mobile Giving Solution
Another way to boost year-end giving is to give donors a more convenient and beautiful giving option. Since just about everyone owns a smartphone, mobile giving is the way to go. Your supporters are already comfortable with using their smartphones for everyday tasks — with mobile giving, you allow them to remain in their comfort zone while donating to your cause.
Because mobile giving can be used from anywhere, at any time, it also allows potential donors who cannot attend your year-end fundraisers in person to participate from afar. With more people giving from more locations — and with an easier-than-ever giving experience — imagine the growth your giving can achieve.
No matter what strategies you implement, keep good records of how effective they are. Next year, this information will be helpful for making that year-end even stronger.