End of Year

The Race is Still On

The Race is Still On

Growing up in Pennsylvania, I had a good friend named Sylvia. We swam on a swim team together. I was pretty much lousy at all sports – swim team included. Sylvia, however, had talent.

Sylvia was so much stronger and better than all of the rest of us in our age group that none of us could really give her a challenge. Near the end of any race, she'd look back at us and we were nowhere near her. She'd leave us way behind. So she'd slack off. There wasn’t any need to make a big effort. She would simply coast to a stop at the end of the race…and still win.

Sometimes the coach would give her a hard time about it telling her how many records she could hold if she just wouldn’t slack off at the end, but she wasn't especially interested in records. She was swimming for the fun of it. We were just in grade school and she didn’t feel any pressure.

It can be easy to feel like Sylvia right about now. #GivingTuesday is behind us. The end-of-year appeal letter we’ve been rushing around to get in the mail has gone out. It might even be kind of quite around the office. But it’s not time to coast to a close just yet.

Just imagine what's possible

Just imagine what's possible

Just Imagine What's Possible When the other 82% gets its head out of the sand!?!

#GivingTuesday has already become an amazing global movement, raising close to $46 million in 2014. If I were a betting woman,  I would wager that the 2015 #GivingTuesday effort will raise even more. Afterall, giving on #GivingTuesday grew 95% between 2013 and 2014 and a reported 240% growth between 2013 and 2015. Growth is a good bet. The question, it seems to me, is not if there will be growth, but how much.  

However, a new study by the John Templeton Foundation reveals that only 18% of the American public is aware of #GivingTuesday.

An Up-Hill Battle: What to Do When You're Behind Your Goal

Recently, a friend of mine who is an Executive Director, asked me what to do. He was concerned that his organization was not going to make their fundraising goals for the year.  "What should we do?" he asked.

First things first. The year is not over yet! I was pretty upset that it's not even October and this Executive Director had already said "ain't gonna happen!" Whoa, my friend! As my mama always said:

"Can't never could!" 

You still have time to re-double your efforts. Pull your team together. This is a moment for him, as Executive Director, to demonstrate leadership. He needs a battle plan. Get all hands on deck. I mean all hands on deck: board members, staff members, volunteers. 

If you have a long way to go to goal, decide what each person can do. Give people specific assignments. Make sure that people have the tools they need to succeed also. If you want board members to send out emails, write the emails for them. Board members can edit them, but it helps them to get going to not have to start from scratch.

Here are a few strategies that have helped me be very successful in year-end giving:

Christmas in July

Christmas in July

This Saturday is Christmas in July.  Santa might not be coming, but there are great sales everywhere and some retailers are even trying to get people thinking ahead to the holiday season which, if you’re a fundraiser, is a really good idea. If you haven’t already begun planning for the end of the year, now is the time to get started.

It’s four months until Giving Tuesday and five months until the close of the fiscal year.

Finish Strong: 3 Strategies to Reach Your End of Year Goal

Finish Strong:  3 Strategies to Reach Your End of Year Goal

You need to finish strong.  It’s the end of the year and this is the make-it or break-it time for nonprofit fundraising.

If you’re still staring at a large fundraising goal and wondering what you can do to reach it, here are a few strategies that will help you take it to goal.  Here are 3 strategies to help you cross the finish line.