Earlier this week, I blogged about the fact I was inundated (in a good way!) by US charities seeking one final gift prior to the close of the calendar (and their fiscal) year. In that blog, I encouraged all organisations to test adding a calendar year-end appeal to your mix of communications this year and to use a similar approach to your own fiscal year-end appeals for 30 June.
On New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day, I, likewise, received a host of donor care/stewardship messages from charities wishing me a Happy New Year and thanking me for my support of the charity over the past year. Some messages were simpler, while others included a year-in-review video or other communications tools. As a supplier to the non-profit sector, @FundraisingForce sent a greeting out to customers, prospective customers, and others in social media.
This simple and easy donor care method, like the calendar year-end appeal, should be added to your communication mix for 2015. I would also suggest suppliers in the non-profit space should do the same. Here is an example I received from Boston Children’s Hospital, which contained a video message. Happy New Year!
Just days prior to New Year’s Eve, my in box was populated with a multitude of email from US charities reminding me to make one last charitable gift prior to midnight on 31 December. Most charities offered the chance for my gift to be doubled or even tripled by a generous donor at year-end.
For US charities, this is their calendar year-end (as it is ours) and it is also their tax year-end. Nonetheless, I questioned why I received so few emails from Australian charities during the final week of the calendar year. Even those received did not push me for a calendar year-end gift.
I fully understand a year-end push happens the week including 30 June for Australian organisations due to our tax year. But, why is it that charities here do not also use calendar year end as an additional final push? Why not test both “giving seasons”?
While in the US over the holidays, I had a conversation with a man who is particularly philanthropic. He highlighted how many emails and letters he received from charities with offers for gifts to be doubled or tripled by other generous donors. The two of us are likely on hundreds and hundreds of charity lists – some overlapping and others unique. I suspect we have a good representation of what was out there at calendar year end.
As you start to implement your plan for the New Year, think about what you might adopt from others and test this calendar year. Think about whether a calendar year-end push is worth testing for your organisation.
Stephen Mally 2015, BPay, Cause Related Marketing, Challenge gifts, Data cleansing, Data hygiene, Donation Tin, Donor care, FundraisingForce, Give Jar, Giving Tuesday, Goal setting, Ice Bucket Challenge, Matching gifts, New Year, Passwords, Personal Brand, PostPay, Professional development, QR codes, thank you notes, Year in Review
For FundraisingForce’s year-end blog, we thought it was appropriate to take a look back at our blog posts over this past year and to do a bit of a year in review. We launched the Website for FundraisingForce in early June and what a year (6 months, actually) it has been! This last year, FundraisingForce…
- …challenged you to think about the last time you sent something handwritten to someone, including thank you notes.
- …suggested preparations for the end of the financial year on 30 June 2014.
- …suggested each charity needed to be prepared to respond to customer service issues via Twitter, just as airlines, hotels, retail stores and others have to be prepared.
- …offered an overview of how some organisations handle opt-outs.
- …highlighted the fact most organisations in Australia do not offer BPay and PostPay as an option for giving for their donors.
- …questioned why charities do not appear to utilise QR Codes in appeals and in other marketing.
- …asked whether you have an elevator pitch to describe your charity and what you do for the charity.
- …discussed collaborative goal setting.
- …suggested customer service is the most import deliverable.
- …spotlighted the good donor care provided by Zoos Victoria Foundation.
- …discussed the importance of good data hygiene.
- …highlighted the importance of matching gifts and how rare they are in Australia.
- …offered four steps to donor care.
- …gave ideas for professional development.
- …asked whether donor welcome packs are a thing of the past.
- …offered the opinion that cause related marketing is also rare in Australia.
- …applauded the Ice Bucket Challenge.
- …also applauded an August telemarketing call.
- …suggested your charity test an ask in your donor acknowledgement/thank you letters.
- …gave training options for your team.
- …highlighted why gifts in honour or memory of someone are really sensitive gifts.
- …introduced the DipJar to potentially replace donation tins.
- …showed you how to find hot prospects for spring.
- …offered advice to prepare for a disaster.
- …gave additional suggestions and advice on staff training.
- …offered advice to set passwords and not store them on Post-it Notes!
- …suggested challenge gifts to motivate your donors to give.
- …introduced the concept of personal brand.
- …highlighted charities offering holiday cards.
- …promoted GivingTuesday and its success a multitude of times.
- …and, we highlighted selfless acts on behalf of charities, including those of MaryRose Mazzola of Massachusetts.
FundraisingForce sincerely hopes the various topics we have blogged have been of interest and benefit to you and others in your organisation.
Special thanks to RamtinWorld for designing a terrific Website and a platform for FundraisingForce to be able to communicate with all of you worldwide.
FundraisingForce wishes you all best wishes for 2015. Happy New Year!