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nonprofit-fundraising-twitter-730x300The smell of pumpkin spice is everywhere, a sure sign that fall has arrived. For most people, fall means colorful leaves, crisp apples, pumpkins and the start of the holidays. For those in the nonprofit sector, fall signifies it’s  time to think about the year-end giving campaign.

Now is the time to sit down and evaluate your fundraising efforts to date. Have you met your goals? What campaigns worked and what campaigns could use a little work? Once you know what your target is for the end of the year, you can set about crafting a campaign that will ensure you reach your fundraising goals.

Your year-end campaign is important to your organization, and your job is to make it important to your donors too. End of year is a busy time in the fundraising world, how will you make your campaign stand out from all the others?

If you are running an email campaign, remember the first thing your donor sees is your subject line, it must make them want to take immediate action. In that small space you need to convince them to click open your email and read what is inside.

Make sure your email messaging is consistent with their website messaging. You want it to be a cohesive experience for the recipient. Don’t forget to design your landing page to reinforce your message.

Social media is one of the best tools at your disposal. While it Facebook and Twitter are the “go to” social media don’t be afraid to use different channels to spread your message. For instance, Instagram allows you to tell your story via images.

The newest site, Periscope is owned by Twitter, and it lets you livestream your own broadcast. Think of it as having your own TV station. You aren’t limited by character spaces, you can tell your story in the amount of time you need, not some predetermined amount.

Remember to catch someone’s attention online is hard. Exposure is everything; it can take 7-8 times (exposures) before you catch someone’s attention. The more your message is shared (or clicked) the better the chance of exposure.

Don’t worry about over saturation, across social media, only 9% of your audience sees any given post. That means you can keep your overall theme and just reword your call-to-action to keep it fresh.

There are a few easy to run social media campaigns that can help set the groundwork for your year-end fundraiser. For example, your organization can take to social media in November and run a Thankful Campaign.

During the month of November you can share specific examples of how your organization is thankful for volunteers, donors etc. and post messages on your social media accounts.

Your organization can also start the giving season off with a  #Giving Tuesday campaign. Started in 2012, #GivingTuesday is a global day of giving designed to counteract the consumerism of BlackFriday and Cyber Monday. If you choose to participate in #GivingTuesday let your donor base know ahead of time that you’re participating to build excitement for the day of giving.

Text messaging campaigns still work. Use text messaging to drive awareness of your year-end giving campaign or your upcoming #GivingTuesday campaign.

With careful planning texting can greatly increase your donor awareness and donations. Tailor your mobile list by interest, level of involvement or giving history and send out educational messages first before soliciting donations. Use your social media platforms to let your donors know they can give by text.

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