Use Special Days to Your Advantage
As a fundraiser, you never stop learning. I’m certainly no exception. That’s why I love co-presenting with fundraisers from nonprofits because I always come away with some new ideas.
A few months ago, I co-presented with a young fundraiser from a great organization, totally on board with monthly gifts and she had created an awesome program.
I am very happy if other fundraisers are as excited about monthly giving as I am. And I truly hope that you’ll find yourself in that same spot once you see how your program grows bigger and bigger. One way to do that is to use special days to your advantage.
Here’s a great calendar I found filled with special days. Do any of these jump out at you as fitting well with your organization?
Then look at your communications/fundraising calendar and decide which days may work well for stewardship and which ones may work best for a special sustainer invitation drive. For example, Valentine’s Day, Earth Day, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, World Toilet Day and National Love Your Pet Day are all examples of days that I’ve seen used very well if tied to a special giving campaign.
But how about doing some stewardship on International Friendship Day — coming up on July 30.
Just look at an example of how the Houston Food Bank used this email as a special way to say “thank you” to monthly donors. Wow, very powerful, isn’t it?
If you don’t want to use a specific day, how about creating your own Sustainer Gratitude Day?
What donor doesn’t like to hear “thank you”?
And by all means repurpose the message. Because you should always create a special tag, group, segment or attribute in your email program. You can use one version of the donor gratitude message and send it to your general donors and send another slight variation to your monthly donors.
So, which days jump out to you? What can you do with them?
Oh, by the way, “Thank you!” You make a difference to the people or animals you serve every day. Happy International Friendship Day!
Erica Waasdorp is one of the leading experts on monthly giving. She is the president of A Direct Solution, a company serving nonprofit organizations with fundraising and direct marketing needs, with a focus on monthly giving and appeals. She authored "Monthly Giving: The Sleeping Giant" and "Monthly Giving Made Easy." She regularly blogs and presents on fundraising, appeals and monthly giving — in person and through webinars. She is happy to answer any questions you may have about this great way of improving retention rates for your donors.
Erica has over 30 years of experience in nonprofits and direct response. She helped the nonprofits she works with raise millions of dollars through monthly giving programs. She is also very actively supports organizations with annual fund planning and execution, ranging from copywriting, creative, lists, print and mail execution.
When she’s not working or writing, Erica can be found on the golf course (she’s a straight shooter) or quietly reading a book. And if there’s an event with a live band, she and her husband, Patrick, can be found on the dance floor. She also loves watching British drama on PBS. Erica and Patrick have two step sons and a cat, Mientje.