So you’ve decided to be a go-getter, a small shop fundraising warrior, and launch your first Day of Giving.
You probably have the same question. Will a flash campaign engage our constituents?
It was an experiment I knew we needed to try, but I was terrified.
With assistance from our Web & Digital Media Producer to push social content and our Director of Advancement Services for database segmentation, I launched Massachusetts College of Art and Design’s first Day of Giving in April 2016.
For your first Day of Giving, I recommend a healthy dose of fear for motivation and lots of caffeine…
Do your research; Watch webinars and read blogs (like this one!) to wrap your mind around what it entails. The concept is easy, but the details can be daunting.
In a small office, time and budgetary resources are limited. It’s easy to get bogged down with those restrictions, so keep a dream big list of everything you would do if you had unlimited time and money.
The majority of our prep took place in the two months leading up to the campaign. If possible, add more lead-time, but know it can be done quickly.
Ultimately, I cut my dream big list back to the following creating a fairly simple day with just enough to make it run well. I recommend these components as the bare minimum.
For our Day of Giving I decided to do a strictly participation based campaign, our goal was 143 donors in honor of every year MassArt has changed the world (we were 143 years young last year). If we reached 143 donors it would unlock $15,000 in matching funds, doubling each donors impact. This really drove home the participation concept and gave our donors more confidence in their gift’s impact.
Tip: Build in components to ensure you will hit your goal. Our 70 volunteers were encouraged to give and we ordered 150 cookies for on-campus donors. Students, faculty, and staff WILL DONATE if cookies are involved.
Your Day of Giving Brand should be different from your regular appeals.
Budget note: Our branding was done in-house by a student designer and everything but the t-shirts were made in-house to keep costs low.
You need a matching donor to gamify your Day of Giving.
Keep your expenses low with digital communications. You can expand on what we did, but we felt the following was reasonable with our resources.
Segmentation is the name of the game. It is time-consuming, but you will reap the rewards if your messaging and email signatories speak to your constituencies and specific donor behavior.
With 13 segments, we sent approximately 65 separate emails tailored to each audience.
We tweeted every hour on the hour between 6am and midnight and posted on Facebook and Instagram three times from our MassArt account.
Who will be your best social, email and on-campus ambassadors? Are there internal departments or groups who will benefit from your fundraising efforts?
Don’t forget to communicate with volunteers throughout the day with updates, thank yous and encouragement. You want to manage and nurture these relationships so they enjoy their experience and want to help next year.
This will differ for every organization, but we chose:
If you follow these steps, this is how you will feel at the end of your 24-hour campaign…