As a fundraising professional in the nonprofit sector, you know that donor engagement is always of utmost importance. As the year-end giving season approaches, this is more true than ever before. After all, thousands of other organizations will be vying for your donors’ attention and dollars — both of which, unfortunately, are limited.
In this quick end-of-year giving guide, we’ll share four tried-and-true ways to increase donor engagement levels among your audience:
- Encourage donors to look into matching gifts.
- Host a live or virtual fundraising event.
- Meet donors where they are with mobile giving.
- Provide shareable social media content.
Make sure your organization is ready to make the most of this fundraising season by leveraging both individual and corporate giving strategies effectively. Let’s jump in.
4 Ways to Engage your Donors for End-of-Year Giving
1. Encourage donors to look into matching gifts.
One of the best ways to engage your supporters while making donations go further is by leveraging employer matching gifts.
Donors love matching gifts because they increase mission impact. As a result, nonprofit supporters have indicated that the presence of matching gift opportunities can increase both their likelihood of giving and the size of their gifts.
It might sound too good to be true, but it’s not. Here are a few of the ways to drive matching gifts during end-of-year fundraising:
- Promote matching gifts beforehand. Share informational resources through your favorite marketing channels, such as social media, email, text, and direct mail.
- Integrate matching gifts into the donation process. Embed a searchable company database in your online donation form to encourage donors to learn more about matching gifts at their highest level of engagement. As donors fill out the online form, they can be prompted to enter their employer’s name and receive company-specific guidelines and next steps.
- Follow up with match-eligible donors afterward. If you know a donor who works for a company that matches gifts, be sure to reach out following their year-end gift to provide them with information regarding donation minimums and maximums, match ratios, submission deadlines, and more.
Thousands of companies offer generous corporate matching gift programs, although this source of funding continues to be underutilized across the board. These ideas can help your team make the most of gift-matching opportunities that may otherwise have been overlooked.
Get started today by downloading our free Giving Tuesday Matching Gift Success Checklist!
2. Host a live or virtual fundraising event.
Fundraising events have long been one of the most engaging types of campaigns you can offer your supporters. Hosting a live or virtual event at the end of the fundraising year can be a great way to stand out amongst the crowd.
For example, consider organizing a virtual fundraising auction to coincide with your end-of-year fundraising efforts. Since online auctions are typically open for longer than a single day, you may open up bidding in the last week of the year, with a big fundraising finale occurring within the final few days.
Events can offer a unique and appealing experience for donors since their involvement goes further than a simple online transaction. Instead, they receive a memorable experience and, in the case of an auction, perhaps an added incentive or item.
As a bonus, be sure to promote gift-matching opportunities to your event attendees as well!
3. Meet donors where they are with mobile giving.
Research from Double the Donation shows that the number of transactions completed through mobile devices increased by more than 50% in the last few years.
That means if you’re looking for a simple way to maximize your online donations, it’s vital that your online donation efforts are mobile-optimized. Otherwise, you risk missing out on potential gifts and engagement opportunities due to a poorly designed donation experience.
There are a few key ways that donors can participate on the go through mobile fundraising, including:
- Mobile-friendly online donation forms
The difference is essentially the way that donors navigate to your online giving process. For mobile-friendly donation forms, supporters may be inspired to give through another page on your website, an email, a social media post, or more. To participate in text-to-give, donors text a pre-determined keyword to your organization’s text giving number, where they’ll be prompted to verify their gift with a few additional steps.
Either way is great for year-end giving. When you make it quick and easy to complete an online donation anywhere, at any time, from any device, you ensure more gifts are successfully processed toward your campaign — all without losing momentum or engagement.
4. Provide shareable social media content.
Did you know that both Millennial and Gen X donors are most inspired to give charitably via social media? According to the same fundraising studies by Double the Donation, Baby Boomer donors don’t fall far behind.
That’s why promoting your fundraising event landing page on social media is one of our favorite tools. Whether you’re promoting your event landing page on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, or another social media platform, leveraging your integrated virtual fundraiser can help to increase donations through external efforts.
Year-end fundraising success often relies on online giving, and one of the best ways to widen your audience and reach new supporters is through strategically promoting your fundraiser on social media. Plus, encouraging supporters to share your social posts with their online networks provides a quick and easy way for individuals to get involved with your end-of-year engagement efforts, even if they’re unable to give financially.
Here’s a hint: be sure to incorporate eye-catching imagery in your social media posts to grab your audiences’ attention and drive conversions. Content with relevant visuals tends to get 94% more views than image-less content (as well as significantly increased numbers of shares and overall interactions), so it’s a must-do to stand out in the final weeks of the year.
Prioritizing supporter engagement throughout any fundraising campaign is one of the best ways to optimize the donor journey. Maintaining high levels of engagement in this vital giving season, however, is particularly crucial as it ensures your efforts stand out to those who support your cause.
Remember to make the most of unique giving opportunities, simplify the donor experience when possible, and reiterate the vitality of every dollar going to your campaign.
For more information on how ClickBid and Double the Donation can help engage your donors for end-of-year giving, download our free Giving Tuesday Marking Gift Success Checklist or reach out to us and we’d be happy to help.
This is a guest blog by Adam Weinger, President of Double the Donation