Annual Campaigns

Best practices for annual-giving programs
March 4, 2011

Even with a strong annual-giving program in place, I found the greatest payoff came from looking deeply to evaluate the program comprehensively and strategically.

Each year, by introducing one strategic, well-planned, high-impact change, we were able to see more than 10 percent growth annually.

Over time, I compiled a list of best practices to help me evaluate my program and stay focused on the essentials:

Salvation Army Sets Red Kettle Record for Sixth Straight Year
February 25, 2011

The Salvation Army raised a record $142 million during the 2010 annual Red Kettle Christmas Campaign. The increase of just over two percent from 2009’s record of $139 million raised reflects the continued determination of every American to support their neighbors during challenging economic times. The Salvation Army’s 2010 campaign employed traditional efforts with volunteers, celebrity endorsements and corporate partners such as Walmart and Sam’s Club, along with new technology and social media tools to set a campaign record for the sixth year in a row.

Charities Try New Tactics to Persuade Gloomy Donors to Give
December 15, 2010

As charities gear up for the third holiday fund-raising season in a down economy, nonprofits are searching for ways to unlock the Grinch-like spirit gripping many donors. But finding new approaches that produce strong results remains elusive for many groups.

An organizations seeking a new way to solicit is the Nature Conservancy — starting its online year-end campaign 15 days earlier this year. But the organization is avoiding asking for money right away, instead spotlighting what scientists say about environmental issues and other topics.

Farewell, Digital World. (It’s All for a Cause.)
November 30, 2010

Wednesday is World AIDS Day, and many celebrities will stop communicating via Twitter and Facebook. They will not be resuscitated, they say, until their fans donate $1 million.

It’s all part of the latest gambit by the singer-songwriter Alicia Keys to raise money for her charity, Keep a Child Alive, which finances medical care and support services for children and families affected by H.I.V. and AIDS in Africa and India.

Minnesota nonprofits rev up for give-a-thon
November 15, 2010

More than 3,000 Minnesota charities, churches, schools and nonprofits are bracing for one of their biggest fundraising days of the year Tuesday -- "Give to the Max Day."

The 24-hour online giving blitz, which raked in an astounding $14 million last year, has generated a blizzard of creative ideas to call attention to the big day.

Charities Brace for Challenging Giving Season
September 21, 2010

In a struggling economy, many other charities will also be conducting year-end campaigns that mix e-mail, social media, traditional mailings, and advertising. What’s more, many of them will be making pitches for gifts right up until New Year’s instead of wrapping up earlier as they did in the past.

Charities have little choice, says Ms. Dyer. “This is a busy time of year for donors, and it is cluttered in terms of competing messages. It is all the more important for us to make a bigger impact.”