Don’t Fear The Pandemic Ask! 

Amy Phillips

Online + Digital

Giving Campaigns Demystified

It is the right time to make your pitch for donations. As a matter of fact, it is your responsibility as a fundraiser to do so.

2020, the longest year in recent memory, is finally OVER. And things are looking up – Covid cases and hospitalizations are declining, restaurants and gyms are reopening, folks are getting vaccinated – hope is in the air and there’s a lot to be grateful for! So take that spirit and let it guide you, your org or school through a successful giving campaign. No need to wait til the end of the year. NOW is the time. The way you communicate your need and market your campaign will look a little different under the current circumstances, though. Here’s how. 

People ARE Still Giving

We KNOW donors are still giving. How do we know? Because the virtual galas (VGs) and #fundraisingevents we conducted last year raised MILLIONS. Literally! The pandemic wreaked havoc on the events industry and the economy at large, yet many folks were (and are) still in a good position to give. They want to help. And did. And continue to. They recognized their favorite schools and nonprofits were in dire straits and they stepped up big time. YOUR mission? Find these folks and make your pitch for their support! We all know, those who don’t ask; don’t get.

Mention Covid and its Specific Impact on You

Does it surprise you that we’re advising you mention Covid in your ask? After all, isn’t everyone SICK of the following words/phrases: coronavirus, Covid-19, global pandemic, unprecedented, these trying times… We could go on and on, you get the picture. BUT – if you don’t acknowledge it, you lose the element of timeliness that will strengthen your position about why it’s (warning: overused phrase ahead) NOW MORE IMPORTANT THAN EVER for donors to support your org, school and the vulnerable people, places and/or animals you serve. DO keep in mind, this year is competitive – especially since so many schools and NPOs did not fundraise in 2020, so DO mention today’s unique needs. 

Communicate the Need

Be specific about your needs and whom you’re helping. This is often a time to reflect back on what you’ve accomplished recently and in the last year. This appeal isn’t necessarily the place to celebrate success. Instead, focus on sharing real, TANGIBLE needs and remind your donors and supporters of the positive impact their generosity creates and makes possible. And keep in mind, there are so many nonprofits, schools and foundations counting on support from their donors who didn’t experience adverse financial impacts in recent months. This year is critical, so it’s extra important to over-communicate and move forward with clear strategy.   

Over-Communicate 

Donors are busy. To give them plenty of time to respond to your request, get it out in front of them SOON! If you’re planning a virtual gala (VG) or other virtual event or #fundraiser, consider running a giving campaign concurrently. It’s a fantastic way to capitalize on the excitement and enthusiasm your VG has already drummed up. There are SO many options to continue fundraising: virtual events, online and email campaigns. How do you accomplish this without causing donor fatigue? Reach out. We have loads of ideas!

Peer-to-Peer Giving Campaigns

‘Tis the season for sweaters and boots. ‘Tis also the season for peer-to-peer fundraising! Ever heard of it? One type is a kind of crowdfunding, but with more than one page: encourage supporters to start their OWN pages and share them with family and friends. With everything social media on the rise, imagine the impact asking your base of supporters could have. Picture concentric circles of friends getting bigger and bigger, encapsulating more and more potential donors. It’s a beautiful sight, right?! We could all use a little more beauty these days.

Take our word for it: Folks who aren’t struggling financially are feeling extra grateful, and subsequently, extra generous. The only thing standing in your way of a profitable giving campaign is people not knowing about it. Or worse yet, not offering one. Let’s avoid this! Need help? Reach out! 2021 is your year. Never stop fundraising.

 

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