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Refresh Your Staff on the Do’s and Don’ts for Year-End Appeals – What is Your Strategy?

With the end of the year quickly approaching, it is time for the final fundraising push of 2014. In the article Year-End Fundraising Tips for 2014, it’s stated that 28 percent of nonprofits earn between 26 and 50 percent of their annual revenue from year-end campaigns.

Have a successful holiday season with these tips for your year-end appeal, perfect to share with your team.


Diversify Your Communication Channels – Almost half of emails will be read on a mobile phone. Promoting year-end giving on social media and sending personalized text messages to individual donors are also effective year-end fundraising tips, the article advised. You could even direct people to a section of the website that simply has an online form for donations.

Keep It Simple – Make sure to explain your purpose, include enticing photos and links, and state your call to action as directly as possible.

Be Specific – By explaining how donations will be used in the short and long term, there is a better chance of receiving funds for upcoming needs. As a bonus, you’ll make donors feel emotionally connected to the cause. Also, make sure they realize the repercussions if donations are not received.

Make It Personal – The best strategy is to reach out to potential or repeat donors with a message specific to them, whether it is about an event they attended or any shared commonalities, instead of a large mass email that is obviously to everyone in the database.

Reward Generosity – Who wouldn’t want a special gift, a donation match, or any other pat on the back for contributing at this time?

Share on Social Media – If you have an upcoming event, specific fundraising goal, or are offering special gifts or recognition for donors, share the link with everyone you know.

Follow-Up – Resend an email or send a follow-up to any interested donors. Better yet, make plenty of phone calls for the final year-end appeal.


Don’t – Forget to be clear about where the money will go and how it will be helpful at this exact time period.

Don’t – Leave out important details on the best way to make donations whether it is a web page, phone number, or place to purchase event tickets.

Don’t – Be late in getting out these emails. Give donors time to plan and put aside funding before the major holidays. “Waiting until after Black Friday is probably a mistake because recipients will likely be inundated with deals from retailers, and it can be harder to command attention in the inbox,” according to

What is Your Strategy?

Be sure to share any tips that have worked well for your year-end appeal.

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