End-of-the-Year Giving Campaigns: Are you ready?

End-of-the-year giving campaigns will soon be in full swing. Is your non-profit organization prepared to reach your target audience and achieve success this holiday season? Instead of scrambling to throw something together at the last minute, establish your goals, select your best audience, and create a multi-channel marketing strategy.  

Establish Your Goals 

Before creating your marketing campaign, take time to establish your goals. What does success look like to you? Are you looking for a high number of responses? Is there an average donation size you are hoping to achieve? Perhaps, you define success as reaching a total number of dollars donated. These KPIs (key performance indicators) will shape how design your end-of-the-year giving campaigns, who you target, and what channels you will use to deploy your message.

After you have defined what success looks like and have determined your desired outcomes, it’s time to strategize on how you are going to achieve your goals.  

What audience are you going after? 

Are you going after current donors or are you hoping to grow your donor base and bring in new patrons? Current donors are already familiar with your organization and what you do, so you can share with them success stories, how the funds helped the organization’s mission, and any new ventures they can help support.  

When advertising to prospective patrons, you will need to include more introductory language in your marketing materials. You will also need to explain who you are, what you do, and why their donation matters. If you are trying to bring in new supporters, consider whether or not you want them to look like your current donors or if you want to reach a new demographic group.  

Targeting new demographics like a younger audience may mean you need to change how you word things, the look and feel of the advertisements you send them, or even what aspects of the organization you highlight. It is always important to keep your audience in mind when building a new campaign. You want to create marketing pieces that resonate with each key group of supporters.  

What size donations are you hoping to receive $15 or $15,000? 

The size of your desired donation amounts will impact your target audience demographics as well as the marketing channels you use. For smaller donations, you might want to go after a younger audience or people with a lower household income. You can use postcards and digital channels to get the word out. For larger donations, you might want to get in front of an older, more established audience with a higher net worth or businesses who will partner with you. Instead of doing digital only campaigns, you may want to create a really nice mailer with the goal of scheduling an in-person meeting.  

What level of awareness does your organization have?  

Will you be targeting a local group of people or do you have national awareness? If you have national awareness, you will want to identify which cities and states your donors are coming from, so you can narrow your focus to your top markets. You should think about whether or not you want to expand into new territories for this campaign or focus on where your organization is known.  

Find Your Best Audience 

No matter how large or small your organization is, you will need to determine your marketing budget for your end-of-the-year giving campaigns. With a budget in place, this means the number of people you can target is limited, so who do you select? You want to maximize your marketing efforts in order to see the highest return on investment possible. Which donors do you choose? Which prospects are the most likely to give to your organization?  

Our team created MicroModeling®, so we could identify our clients’ top patrons and prospects. MicroModeling® analyzes your current donor list and creates an in-depth donor profile. We also identify the key characteristics and data variables that have the strongest predictive power, so we can help you identify who to target. Each record is scored and ranked, so you can choose the best donor records to advertise to. If you want to go after a new audience, we can run your prospect universe through the model and select the top scoring records. This critical information helps you make the most of your marketing budget as well as trim marketing waste.  

Build Your Strategy 

With your goals established and target audience identified, it’s time to create your marketing strategy. How are you going to reach these people? Remember that the end of the year is a busy time for consumers, and they will be inundated with requests for donations as well as holiday shopping ads. You need to create a plan that will allow you to stay in front of them across multiple channels; otherwise, your request could get lost. By using an omni-channel marketing approach, you build recognition, trust, and create multiple opportunities for them to respond. 

In order to use this approach, consider what you’ve learned about your audience. What platforms are they on? What apps do they use? Will they respond well to direct mail, email, display, or social ads? Where do they spend their time? With that information in mind, target your selected audience on those channels with a unified message and design, so you can keep your cause in front of them.  

As you prepare for your end-of-the-year giving campaign, create a marketing strategy that works smarter not harder. Our team has worked with many non-profit organizations, and we are happy to help answer your questions. Let’s set up a time to connect and see how we can help you achieve your goals this holiday season.