10 Things You Can Do NOW to Start Planning Your 2021 Year-End Fundraising Campaign

Here at Network for Good, we have seen countless year-end campaigns and incredible stories of organizations drastically increasing the amount they raise from one year to the next. One of the things that can really contribute to your own success is bringing forward the timeframe for planning your campaign and drafting your communications. Find out how you can jumpstart plans for your year-end campaign below.  

  1. Create a communications planPutting together a list of communications to promote donations this fall is a great first step in the planning process for your year-end campaign. Make sure you take advantage of all of the communication tools you have available, including a banner on your website, a dedicated everyday giving page connected to the donate button on your homepage, an updated Facebook cover photo, social media posts, emails, a direct mailing, text messages, video, etc.  
  2. Save key dates in your calendar. We recommend sending out a direct mail appeal in mid-November and following up with a series of regular digital communications through New Year’s Eve. Look for key dates to add to your plan, such as #GivingTuesday on November 30 and any local giving days in your area.  
  3. Secure a matching gift. Knowing that their gift could be doubled or tripled can be really compelling for donors. By securing a matching gift over the summer, you can incorporate talking points into your communications from the time you begin drafting them. 
  4. Choose a theme. Having a cohesive look and feel for your communications can help tie them together into a robust campaign. Make sure this year’s campaign stands out from your previous year-end campaigns and from other organizations in your community.  
  5. Gather new testimonials. We saw a significant increase in online philanthropy after COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic in March 2020. Donors are especially passionate about the causes they care about right now. Why not see if you can gather quotes from your donors, board members, and even your beneficiaries, that you could add to your year-end appeals?  
  6. Take photos. This is a great way to get other staff members at your organization involved in fundraising! If you have programs or events coming up (in person or virtual), consider whether it’s possible to take photos to include in your communications this fall. Even something as simple as a screenshot of a Zoom event or Facebook Live if you have permission to share could demonstrate to your donors the impact that you are making right now.  
  7. Create infographics. As you begin ramping up your posting schedule on social media in November, it’s helpful to have a variety of content to share. If you are looking for a program to create infographics to share key information with your followers, such as the impact a $25, $50, or $100 could make, ask your coach for advice. Many organizations find it helpful to use a website like www.canva.com or www.piktochart.com 
  8. Create a folder to store all of your visual content. A great place to start is www.givingtuesday.org. The official website for #GivingTuesday offers free logos and graphics that nonprofits can use to help promote the day.  
  9. Research print companies for a direct mail appeal. If you’re planning to have your direct mail pieces professionally printed this year, take some time to reach out to local companies and find out how much it would cost to produce the quantity you have in mind. That way you will know who to contact when it’s time to have your direct mailing printed and sent out this fall.  
  10. Ensure you’re making the most of your fundraising software. Have you tested out all of the communication tools, including text messages and videos? Have you segmented your contacts so that you’re ready to create different mailing lists for your appeals and tailor the messaging for each one? If not, do some research to learn more.  
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