It's never too late to help your EOY campaign!
In a pinch to get your End-of-Year (EOY) fundraising plan together? Want some fresh ideas to ensure your campaign is on track to maximum impact and success? These five key actions will ensure your EOY campaign is ready to go.
You’ve heard us recommend in our Spool to Sphere Comparison that you should start planning for your end-of-year (EOY) campaign in August, September at the latest. But we’re also realists. Sometimes your ducks just won’t get in a row to start that early. Before you know it, it’s mid to late October.
Even if you’re just now starting to organize your EOY campaign, it’s not too late. By focusing on five key actions, you can still have a winning EOY campaign.
#1: Get Yourself a Goal
Even if you’re pulling together an EOY fundraising campaign at the last minute, it’s still crucial for you to spend some time with your team deciding on a goal for your campaign.
A goal is much more than a metric. It’s THE organizing principle in fundraising. A goal will help you to define success. It guides your content creation. It motivates and enthuses your community. Simply put, it’s your north star.
#2: You Gotta GivingTuesday
GivingTuesday gets bigger and bigger every year. As this day of philanthropy grows, it cements itself deeper into the holiday timeline we all know and react to: Thanksgiving, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, GivingTuesday, Hannukah, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve. So, if you sit out GivingTuesday, you are effectively sitting out a piece of your success.
But if pulling together a fundraising appeal on GivingTuesday is just too big a bite, then chew something smaller. You might make GivingTuesday into a thank-a-thon, or it becomes an email or address acquisition campaign, or it’s the day you finally want to send out that donor survey you’ve been meaning to. You can think outside the box of fundraising for money, but whatever you do, you gotta GivingTuesday.
#3: The Little Mailing that Could
Every year someone in the nonprofit sector wants to ring the death knell for direct mail, and every year that proves a fool’s mission. Direct mail is definitely not dead, my friends!
Even if you’re not prepared to do a very large letter mailing, you should absolutely still do a small one. Make a targeted list of donors you want to ensure give again and send them letters directly from your office. Make them highly personalized and make the people you’re mailing feel like the essential partners in your mission that they are.
#4: Emailing Until the End
We recently sat in on a webinar from NextAfter on how nonprofits are using multichannel fundraising during EOY. In other words, what are the trends in how nonprofits communicate offline with online donors, and online with offline donors, for a more comprehensive experience.
One of the major things they reviewed is the timing of revenue during EOY. From their research, they saw that 4.6% of revenue comes in on GivingTuesday, while 38.9% is coming in after December 25th. That’s 734% more revenue secured after December 25th than on GivingTuesday!
The upshot of all this is that yes, GivingTuesday is important and you should work around it. However, it is not as important from a dollars-in-the-door perspective as that last week of the year.
When you’re planning your communications – your emails, your letters, your phone calls, your texts, your event experiences – you should be prioritizing the last week of the year. Yes, it’s late in the season, but don’t get fatigued and think it’s all over by the last week of the year. That’s actually the moment for your biggest push.
#5: Thank You, Thank You
That automated receipt after an online gift? That’s an acknowledgment. It’s not stewardship.
Stewardship encompasses the outreach and communications that help donors feel proud of their giving, connected to the cause, and impressed with your impact. Your EOY campaign plan simply cannot skimp on how you plan to steward your financial partners. What emails, letters, or phone calls can you execute to ensure you’re engaging your donors in more meaningful ways?
Have questions or want more details on these five key actions for last-minute EOY planning? Join us on Thursday, October 28th at 2pm EST for a live webinar! You can register here, and we hope to see you there!