Sometimes I think January can be the new November.
Or whichever the second-biggest fundraising month is for you.
Several years ago I began making a concerted effort to spend the last few days of the year connecting with as many donors from the previous year who had not yet given during the current year.
Of course that type of effort can really happen all year, and in my development office it does. Still there are those who really don't respond until the end of the year.
The first year I did this we reached out to hundreds of donors. Many board members helped with calls and it made for a lot of excitement at the end of the year.
What I learned was not only did we increase giving for the last week of the year, but because of all of the connections and conversations January became our second-biggest fundraising month of the year!
In a fundraising world where everyone is always so "busy", our best successes can come from simply doing what we do best: engage with donors.
This year our team is all set to to completely engage the last two days of the year. We will be full force with lists and email addresses and phone numbers all ready to ensure that every donor has an opportunity to support us before the end of the year.
Between the phone calls, two email blasts and a gorgeous postcard that landed the day after Christmas, my hope is that we are definitely on people's minds as they consider a year end gift.
And it doesn't end at midnight on the 31st. On January 2nd we are right back, engaging, answering questions, thanking, expressing our gratitude. By the first full week in January we have the opportunity to connect with people about our upcoming Gala, our goals for the new year, our excitement of successes in the past month and pretty much anything that will help us engage with our donors.
Happy New Year! My wish is that 2014 is filled with peace, love and more passion for fundraising!