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Fundraising for Nonprofits: Planning for Year-End

Fundraising for Nonprofits: Planning for Year-End

Fundraising for Nonprofits: Planning for Year-EndCalendar year-end is often the busiest time of year for fundraising for nonprofits. In fact, 31% of charitable donations are made in the month of December, according to Charity Navigator.

Making charitable donations at the end of the year is appealing for donors for several reasons, and 2021 is no different. In fact, it may be more appealing this year because incentives put in place by the CARES Act are set to expire at the end of the year.

Additionally, by year’s end, donors age 72 and older who need to spend their required minimum distribution from an individual retirement account, or IRA, may be looking for organizations to which to donate. A gift from an IRA to a qualified charity satisfies the donor’s required minimum distribution and can reduce annual income, which may help lower Medicare premiums and decrease the amount of Social Security subject to tax.

In 2021, year-end direct mail campaigns could be more challenging. As a cost-cutting measure, the United States Postal Service began slowing down its delivery of first-class mail on Oct. 1. Although 61% of first-class mail will not be impacted, nonprofits should consider their approach and timing for year-end direct mail appeals.

Here are some fundraising ideas for nonprofits to help prepare for your year-end appeal:

  1. Send your direct mail appeal earlier to anticipate longer delays for letters to reach your donors’ mailboxes.
  2. Increase your multi-channel approach. In addition to your mail piece, try to reach your donors digitally through increased email appeals, social media posts or video on your website. All these touches should include the ability for the donor to easily take action and click a button to donate.
  3. Select your best prospects and schedule one-on-one meetings for the last few weeks of the year. It may seem overwhelming to schedule more meetings during a busy time, but making time for prospects, particularly those who may be able to make a major gift, could have favorable results for your campaign.
  4. Consider engaging your donors in a virtual fundraising opportunity. Host a holiday concert, cooking demonstration or Noel-themed movie trivia night to engage your audience and support your organization in the comfort of their own home.

To execute these marketing strategies, nonprofits will need to plan ahead and spend more time on a year-end campaign to achieve the best results.  Need extra help realizing your fundraising goals? Connect with a fundraising consultant at AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising today.

Written by:

Melissa provides fundraising counsel for AMPERAGE’s nonprofit clients, leading feasibility studies and providing solutions that drive successful fundraising campaign results. A Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), she uses her experience and extensive skill set to continually advance her fundraising practices and develop campaign-specific strategies, materials and training to help clients reach their campaign goals and advance their mission. Melissa has vast experience working in the nonprofit sector, having served in development and leadership roles with Sisters of Mercy and the Alzheimer’s Association. In addition, she has served as a volunteer and board member with local nonprofits, such as the Catherine McAuley Center. Faith-based organizations and causes are of particular interest to Melissa. Melissa moves the needle by always looking for new opportunities and ways to improve professionally. She is currently president of the Eastern Iowa Planned Giving Council and a past president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals-Eastern Iowa Chapter. Melissa holds a Master of Strategic Leadership degree from Mount Mercy University. This busy professional, wife and mother enjoys sports and live music in her free time. A fan of Cubs baseball and Iowa Hawkeye football, Melissa and family enjoy football tailgating, where she’s known for her breakfast burritos. She enjoys the local band scene but says a Foo Fighters concert is her all-time favorite.