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Many people wait for the final weeks of the year to make their charitable contributions, but that doesn’t mean that you should wait until December to put your wheels in motion. Whether it’s the beginning, end or middle of your fiscal year, nonprofits everywhere should be finalizing their year-end giving plans.
Year-end giving has great potential, but comes with equally great competition. With most nonprofits participating in an aggressive fundraising push, I recommend the following steps to keep your organization top of mind during the giving season:
1. Express your gratitude to your donors through e-mail and social media in the days leading up to Thanksgiving.
2. Opt for Thanksgiving--rather than holiday cards--to avoid getting lost in the piles of December mail. These cards should serve as a thank-you and not a solicitation. Additionally, remember to include a handwritten note to your major donors.
3. Participate in #GivingTuesday, an annual day of giving thanks held on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. (Learn more about #GivingTuesday here.)
4. Use diverse methods of fundraising throughout the month of December, including: direct mail, e-mail, social media and even phone-a-thons, which are helpful to capture lapsed donors. Be sure to clearly articulate how your donors’ support will impact your organization’s future, as well as how it has done so in the past.
5. Make your final push on New Year’s Eve via e-mail and social media posts.
Following Thanksgiving, the focus for most of us turn to the holiday season and the final days of the year seem to tick by at lightning speed. The holidays tend to make people feel more generous and it's to your benefit to tap into human emotion to advance your mission and your fundraising!
If you are interested in year-end giving strategies specific to your organization, please contact Amanda Ravens at AmandaLRavens@gmail.com