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Year End Fundraising Tips

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It’s December, and you know this is the time to make your last big fundraising push for your nonprofit. You know that nearly one-third of all annual giving occurs in December.  You’ve sent out your year-end appeal, and you are starting to get checks in the mail as well as donations online. Do you just sit back and wait for the mail, or watch your online donations come in? Definitely not! This is the time to get proactive.

There are two very important year end fundraising tips I’d like to share with you that will greatly magnify your results –

  1. Run your LYBUNT report. Your donor database should have a one-click report called “LYBUNT,” which stands for “Last Year But Not This Year.”  Start ticking donors off this report as their donations arrive so you can stay on top of who you need to thank promptly and who you need to contact who has not yet made their year-end gift.
  2. Pick up the phone and call.  As donations arrive, promptly call to say “thank you.” It matters not whether you get voicemail or the donor answers their phone, they will be happy you did. Everyone likes to be thanked!  For those on your LYBUNT report who have not yet given but who gave this time last year, start calling them about 7 to 10 days business days before December 31.  You can perform what I like to call “the ‘thank you in advance’ call.”  It goes something like this: “Hello Mr. Jones, I’m calling to thank you in advance for the gift I know you are about to make, as you always give to us each December,” and create a short script for the call that explains the impact of last years’ gift and the impact of this years’ gift, too.

With a bit of practice, the second tip of calling will become second nature to you.  Remember, this can be a team effort. Development staff, program staff and even board members can make these calls.

Wishing you greater nonprofit abundance and success!