AIDS Lifecycle - Ride to end AIDS


7 Ways to Boost Your Year-End Fundraising Efforts

Posted November 28, 2012

**Adapted from an article by Gail Perry, CFRE, Fundraising Consultant and author. 

The most important—and most critical—giving season is upon us. And for many nonprofits, one out of every two gifts comes in the last three months of the year.

Online giving is even more important at year-end. About 40 percent of charitable gifts are made in December, with the majority of those gifts made during the last two days of the year. Chalk it up to the holiday spirit of generosity, people are inclined to donate more at this time of year—the average online gift is higher at this point in the season than earlier in the year. As an AIDS/LifeCycle participant, you can’t miss this opportunity to maximize your fundraising success!

Apply these proven fundraising strategies today and watch your fundraising totals soar!  

1.  Use multiple asks this month and try different formats.

People are busy during the holiday season and they will need plenty of reminders to donate to your ride. Send weekly emails, make phone calls, add hand written notes to your holiday cookie deliveries, and take every opportunity to chat with your loved ones about what you are doing.

2.  Start this week by sending a feel-good note to your donors that expresses your gratitude

Remember the first step to any fundraising campaign is thanking your donors for their partnership and friendship.

3.  Vary your messaging during December with these themes for appeals:  

  • Share a compelling, emotional story about why you are participating in AIDS/LifeCycle.
  • Recap your accomplishments for the year. Help your donors celebrate your successes. If you’ve been out there riding in the cold or rain, you have at least one story to share!
  • Talk about the challenges you will overcome during the coming year and ask your donors who have already given for an additional year-end gift.
  • Create a deadline-driven challenge or matching gift opportunity that can build momentum and visibility.

4.  Ask for donations instead of holiday gifts.

  • Instead of asking for gifts this year, asking for a donation sends a powerful message to your donors—that you believe in this cause and in the impact you will have.  This is an opportunity for them to make a difference with you.

5.  Remind donors about last minute tax deductions.

Remind your donors that they can make a secure last-minute donation just in time for the tax deadline. But only send this after December 26th.  Try this simple three email formula:

  • December 23rd: a "holiday support" email
  • December 29th: an email emphasizing tax deductible giving opportunities
  • December 30th: a final "last chance to donate" email

6.  Be sure your AIDS/LifeCycle homepage is up to date and snappy

Remember that most of your donors will probably check your fundraising page before they donate.  Be absolutely sure that your page is personalized and that your appeal is clear, concise, and direct! 

7.  Make it easy for your donors to support you.

Make it easy for impatient online donors who are in a hurry. If you send emails through your Participant Center, a link to your donation page is already included.  If you are send emails through another email service, be sure to customize your fundraising page URL.  You can do this in your Participant Center. 

Follow these steps and watch your fundraising take off! And as always, if you have any questions about any of this, contact your Cyclist Rep.