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Posted on 
January 19, 2021

Fundraising Planning Kick Starting 2021

Can you believe we are almost 1/12th of the way through 2021 already? Is your organization still catching your breath from the hectic end of year fundraising and racing to get your tax letters out the door to your constituents? In the hustle and bustle of the 4th quarter fundraising fury did your planning and strategy meetings keep getting pushed back and how you’re here at the end of January realizing “uh oh we never …”. Well here are a few quick pointers to kick things into overdrive.

First, get your team together.

Get all of the departments together, have everyone bring calendars and plans for their departments (Zoom if you have to!). Order lunch and drinks in for the team and carve out an afternoon of fun brainstorming and planning for the year ahead. When your team is together, REVIEW the results of last year. What worked? What did not? What opportunities did we miss? Often times the best planning is done by incrementally changing what happened previously.

Second, be ready to look at your fundraising & communication strategy and methods.

Yes, this means your direct mail calendar, your email solicitation, your white mail, and your organization’s social media communications. It also means the tried and true event planning as well as major donor and planned giving. Don’t forget recent emerging communications like text2give and other means of communications and fundraising. RENEW your commitment (hopefully it’s renew and not begin) to working across multi-channels of communication this year so all constituents are communicated to strategically and in a manner upon which they wish to communicate with your organization.

Third, plan!

Every department should be working off the master-planning communications document. This ensures that your entire organization has a comprehensive view of the communications and the segments of your constituents receiving the various communications. This helps avoid easy-to-miss mistakes of not communicating at all to one segment or over-communicating to another segment of your constituent database. RE-EXAMINE the plan when you think it is complete. The old adage measure twice and cut once applies here. Avoid the unforced error of over/under communicating with constituents by checking and rechecking segmentations and communications.

Finally, do it!

Once planning is done, let your team implement! Now that does not mean that you should not have a constant process of refining your calendar and planning and integrating new ideas and seizing new opportunities that may arise in the coming year. But it does mean that your team can get started. Don’t make the mistake of taking too much time and over analyzing and over thinking the calendar at the expense of not implementing fundraising. After all, if your organization is like a lot of others that have too few people doing too many jobs, the future success and growth of your wonderful charity depends on the critical aspect of fundraising. REACH OUT to your constituents and begin implementing.

For more than two decades, Paperless Transactions has served nonprofits by leveraging technology to connect nonprofits to donors and through their digital marketing agency, CauseDRIVEN Marketing, they have built digital marketing plans that produce results. If your nonprofit needs guidance going into 2021, schedule some time with our team and let’s design a strategy to empower your mission.