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20178Labor day is on the horizon. That means good bye lazy summer days and hello to that final fundraising push to meet your yearly goals. While each nonprofit has its own unique mission and donors, there is one thing they all have in common. The year end fundraising campaign.

Okay, so maybe you aren’t quite ready to deck the halls, but you do have to plan your year end campaign. In a survey by Nonprofit Insiders Network 28 percent of those nonprofits surveyed indicated they raised between 26 and 50 percent of their total annual income from their year-end fundraising efforts.

The survey also found that 100 percent of those polled used direct mail for their year-end campaign. That is a lot of direct mail campaigns hitting donors and potential donor’s mailboxes in the next four months.

So how does your organization stand out?

Well, for direct mail campaigns it starts with getting your donors to open the letter. Try printing wording on the envelope that encourages donors to open the letter such as Open to find out how you can help feed 5 hungry school children.

Of course you can also use email for your year end letter, but getting donors to read those emails is almost as difficult as getting them to open a regular letter.

Work on those tantalizing subject lines and make sure you emails are mobile friendly and include a link to make giving instantly possible for your donors.

And, make sure your email messaging is consistent with your overall branding. You want it to be a cohesive experience for the recipient.

Social Media

By now your organization most likely has a social media presence on all the channels that are relevant to your target market. These platforms are a great way to spread the word about your year end campaign. With several of the platforms offering you the ability to livestream your

Organization can connect with your audience and show them exactly how their donations make an impact.

Use the social aspect of social media to encourage your donors to share your campaign with their friends. People are more likely to give to an organization that they know their friends give to, or you could consider gamifying giving.

Gamifying is adding an elements of game play to an item. In this case, it is your year end donor drive, so find ways to foster engagement, participation and maybe even a little competition to make your campaign unique.

There are some preset giving opportunities tied in with social media, such as November’s  #GivingTuesday. Started in 2012, #GivingTuesday is a global day of giving designed to counteract the consumerism of Black Friday 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.

Some smaller organizations find it hard to stand out in the #GivingTuesday crowd so they use a Thankful Campaign. During the month of November your organization can share specific examples of how your organization is thankful for volunteers, donors etc. and post messages on your social media accounts.


Never underestimate the humble text. People are still most likely to open, read and respond to a text message.

You can use text messaging to drive awareness of your year-end giving campaign or your upcoming #GivingTuesday campaign.

Whether your organization uses just one of these techniques or use a combination of several, the end result should be a successful year end campaign that helps you meet your financial goals.

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