For many of us, our end-of-year fundraising campaign is a lot like Christmas…
We know it’s coming. We know we need to be ready. But planning for it in August, just seems too early.
Let me encourage you…Prepare now!
What is a “Campaign”?
For your nonprofit or NGO, a campaign is a series of touchpoints with the purpose of helping people find their place in your ministry’s mission.
It has a stated purpose and measurable goal with a start and end date.
Your campaigns will vary based on your purpose for it. A campaign to engage more volunteers will look different than one designed to raise funds.
In this blog, we’re talking specifically about a campaign focused on engaging ministry partners in giving financially to your ministry’s Annual Fund.
Timing of a Fundraising Campaign
Nonprofits in the USA
In the USA, the end of the year is known to be the time when people are most inclined to donate even if they haven’t donated throughout the year.
Because contributions to nonprofit charities decreases their tax liability for that year. Many are also in the mindset of giving because it is Christmastime.
Fundraising campaigns may be held throughout the year, but in the US, year-end is a must!
NGOs Outside the USA
The principles and best practices we’re talking about apply to your setting as well. However, the timing during the calendar year will vary based on what affects your country’s culture of giving. In the USA, the tax code has a huge influence on giving.
In your setting, it may be a national holiday or a weather/agricultural cycle. If you’re unsure, you could start by looking at your donation history and talk as a team about what outside factors may have influenced it.
What to Include in Your Year-End Fundraising Campaign
- Outcomes rather than Activity—Most people will assume you are doing something to fulfill your mission. But do they know what difference you’ve made? What life-change has happened/is happening as result of what you do as a ministry? It’s ok to share what you are doing, but the emphasis needs to be on why you are doing it.
- Stories over Statistics—Stories draw us into the lives of the people encountering the Kingdom of God through your ministry. Stories encourage relationship rather than one-time transaction. It’s ok to share statistics that show growth as a ministry or an increased need, but tie them to the proven or hoped-for outcomes.
- Avoid the word “donate”—It isn’t a bad word, but it can tend to sound like a transaction rather than a relationship. Alternatives include invite, engage, participate, invest.
Preparing your Year-End Fundraising Campaign now means you’ll be able to include multiple touchpoints, with timing that encourages financial engagement, and fosters stronger relationship with your ministry partners.
We’ll be sharing more details of how often to connect and ways to do it in our next Accelerate! webinar. We invite you to join us! Click here to register for the August webinar.