At this point, your head may be spinning as you try to manage the organization and its programs and services, your staff who all seem to need a million things from you and generating funds to continue the programs and services that are pulling you in all directions. Take some time right now to focus on meeting your year-end fundraising goals…..then, you will have one thing off your to-do list.
Start with the board of directors. Have they all contributed this year? If not, send them a heartfelt email reminding them of their commitment to the organization and the work you do. Share how important they are, that they are setting the standard for others to give. Remind them the expectation is that they each will give a gift that is “meaningful significant.” (If you are not sure what this means, send me an email and I will be happy to explain).
Have the board of directors send out requests. One of the benefits of having board members is that they know people that you don’t. Write an email that they can copy and paste to send to folks on their email list. You will need to spend the time writing the email so that it conveys the message you want and need it to, but essentially, they will invite their friends and family to join with them in support of your great organization.
Identify people who have given in the past. Are there people in your database that have given in the past but haven’t given yet this year? It is quite possible that they may have just gotten busy and neglected to send the check. Or, it is also possible that they have received 329 other requests and yours got lost in their email. Take the time to call them to thank them for their past support, let them know how valuable they are. The simple act of calling them will trigger their memory, so be prepared to let them know how they can give this year.
Get your year-end appeal out. While this may seem like a no-brainer, I have recently spoken with several organizations that haven’t sent out their appeal yet. You won’t receive anything if you don’t ask for it. Take the time to send out your appeal NOW!
Share some photos. If you are sending an email, include a photo of someone you have helped. A smiling child goes a long way to help spread the message of your organization. Make the photo “clickable” so that when the reader clicks on it, they go to a page where they can donate to your organization.
There is some discussion in the fundraising world about whether it is better to use a picture of a smiling face or a sad face. The answer of course is, “it depends.” Anytime you are talking about someone you have helped, include someone who is smiling. But, when you are requesting funds, the research shows that a sad face is more likely to generate funds.
Make it easy to donate. For the remainder of this month, make your website’s home page a donation page where it is easy to contribute to your work. Then, when someone donates, be sure they are directed to a nice thank you page.
It is not too late for your year-end fundraising efforts. Spend a few minutes thinking about how best to connect with people and share the work your organization does all year long. Invite them to be part of your work.
End of year fundraising questions? Send us an email, we will offer you some tips and tricks for success.