As a nonprofit fundraiser you are about to get extremely busy.
Year-end is coming!
There are appeals to create, stories to write, lists to segment, checks to process, donors to thank, social media tactics to learn, and email subject lines to test. At this overwhelming time of year, it’s tricky to juggle all these important tasks.
So what’s the best way to get it all done? Delegate!
Since nonprofit board members are constantly told they should participate in fundraising, but “hate asking for money,” they are the perfect candidates to help with your campaign.
Here are 10 year-end fundraising tasks and projects that are perfect for the board member or engaged key volunteer to jump in and take the reins:
1. Have a board member that knows everyone and enjoys talking with others? Put her in charge of story collection.
Have her interview program staff, clients, community members and other volunteers to uncover inspiring, stories of your organization’s work. Have her record them or type them up for you to use in your campaign (or down the road). You’ll get many mission-related stories that you can use in your appeals, social media posts, emails, and thank you letters. This can be a fun and extremely rewarding way for a board member to connect with your mission.
2. Every year, you need to clean-up your email list.
This is a time-consuming, administrative task that can leave your email campaign a big mess if ignored. Purging emails that have bounced and adding new emails that have been collected over the past year is the perfect task for the more introverted volunteer who can have it all ready-to-go for your year-end email appeals.
3. Have a board member who loves his iPhone? Recruit him to be your cameraman for your campaign wrap-up video.
Have him film short and sweet “thank-you” clips from fellow-board members, staff, clients, kids, puppies… and then compile them into a 5 minute video you can send to your donors in January.
4. Recruit 2-3 people to test your online giving experience.
Ask them to make small “test” gifts of $10 and get their feedback about the experience. Did it go smoothly? Was it easy to figure out what to do? Was there any confusion? Did they get an immediate confirmation with a thank you? Did they feel amazing for making the gift? You’ll end up with fresh insight into this very important experience.
5. Seed your social media campaign with a team of Facebook-savy, Twitter-ready, Instagram-loving volunteers who’ll be ready to like, tweet, repost, comment and generate buzz about on your campaign-related posts. Don’t just sit back and wait for someone to notice. Remind them to get ready to take action when the time comes.
6. Do you have a party-planner on your board? Task her with organizing a thank-you note writing party either before your campaign (to warm-up your donors) or a post-campaign thank-a-thon.
She can gather your board and volunteers, feed them lunch or afternoon goodies and have them come together to compose hand-written notes or call donors. This is a fun activity that will reap loads of return for your donor retention.
7. Volunteers can also help staff your office during the holidays.
Nonprofits are swamped with administrative work during the holidays – just when staff are heading out of town and children are home from school. Recruit volunteers who can spare a few hours here or there to fill in. They can help greet donors who drop-off contributions, enter gift data, run to the bank, and help get those gift acknowledgement letters promptly in the mail.
More often than not, board members and volunteers appreciate knowing specific ways they can be involved and serve. They can choose something that excites and inspires them, and enjoy the satisfaction of being a productive, useful participant in your mission.
Ultimately, this frees you to do the heavy-lifiting fundraising that you are trained to do.
If you identify the right person for the job, the right job for the person, and then step back and trust them with their task, it will be a win-win -win: for you, for your volunteer and for your campaign.