Here are four lessons we learned last month:
12% of annual giving comes in the final three days of the year
And nearly one-third of its total annual giving happens in December. That’s why it’s hard to overstate the importance of an institution’s performance in the final months of the year. Now—before we hit the end-of-year rush—is the time for institutions to develop a well-rounded plan to hit their goals. For example, they can review their CRM data to determine who needs personalized outreach. While most donors will come through your multichannel marketing efforts—especially online giving—some donors who give through other vehicles such as a 401k distribution or donor-advised funds that require personal outreach.
Click here to read six steps you can take right now to boost end-of-year giving.
An institution needs a clear objective when setting up a volunteer committee
“If you are setting up a volunteer committee or board only because you need to generate revenue, that won’t be enough of an objective for it to be a meaningful, productive experience for the volunteer,” said Angela Greenwald, GG+A Vice President, in a recent webinar focused on how institutions can effectively leverage volunteers. That can have a detrimental effect and may actually work against the institution’s fundraising objectives. That’s why institutions need to determine how they might benefit from the expertise, diversity of perspective, and network that volunteers can bring.
A clear, compelling annual fund case for support is important to growing your annual fund
While we know that the annual fund is an essential operating budget revenue stream, that shouldn’t be the focus of your case. Instead, the case should highlight how annual giving donors help the museum attract and retain top-notch curators; devise and implement cutting-edge programs at the institution; defray tuition expenses for students who could not otherwise attend; and more.
Click here to read about the essential elements of a well-planned annual fund.
Every institution should challenge its assumptions to ensure it gets the most out of its annual giving program
That means testing different approaches. For example, you might run a test in which you send one group an annual giving appeal with a graphic on the envelope and another group a standard business envelope. That type of test can enable you to determine what works well for your donor base.
Click here to read more ways to ensure your annual giving appeals inspire action.