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Tip of the Week: Giving Tuesday Alternatives

It's less than two weeks until #GivingTuesday (November 29th this year) - a national day of online charitable giving (strategically after Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and Cyber Monday), and all of the nonprofit blogs are abuzz with tips and tricks to make your campaign the best it can be. Since its inception in 2012, Giving Tuesday has generated $116.7 million for nonprofits globally, with over 40,000 organizations in 71 countries participating. Even though the movement seems to be going strong, many local organizations expressed that they've decided not to participate in a global campaign because they feel like their message would be lost in a crowd of "asks" and the preparation for the event would be incredibly time consuming, even though GivingTuesday.org offers several tool kits and resources to help beforehand. More importantly, those in fundraising positions reiterated that they want to be engaging and receiving donations from their supporters year-round, and asking on Giving Tuesday is counter-intuitive to this. You can read more about why many nonprofit leaders advise avoiding Giving Tuesday.

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Tech Tips: 12 Online Fundraising Best Practices

As you may have heard, charitable giving is at an all-time high by individuals, companies and foundations; according to a report last year from Salsa Labs an estimated $335 billion went to charities in 2013, up 3% from 2012. However, more and more stats are pointing to online giving as the wave of the future. …

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Giving Smart: Giving Cards – A Gift Paid Forward

This holiday season, you may want to consider a gift that keeps giving.  A Giving Card provides an opportunity for inspiration.  The recipient will designate a charity of their choice and your gift will go on to support the work of the charity and the people they serve.  Your gift has made a difference three-fold.…

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News From the Community: Local #GivingTuesday Campaigns

With #GivingTuesday ? the global day of online giving -  just around the corner on December 2nd, we wanted to spotlight some of the local organizations who are joining the movement and thinking creatively about how to spread the word to their supporters through social media, partnerships, events and challenges.    Read more about #GivingTuesday and…

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From an Expert: Leveraging Local Nonprofit Buying Power

If someone were to tell you that your organization had buying power, what would that mean to you? I?m guessing probably not much since we rarely talk about such a term in the non-profit world, but it?s a term you should know. Why? The buying power of your non-profit is your biggest resource and I?m…

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Giving Smart: The Tricks and Treats of Year-End Fundraising


It is the biggest quarter of the year for many nonprofits.  As organizations embark on year-end fundraising campaigns, how can they maximize their efforts?  A post on SalsaLab?s blog, ?How to Create Your Own Year-End Fundraising Fairy Tale,? offers insight into how to approach a year-end campaign.

Organizations can raise as much as 40% of their individual donations in the month of December.

December is the month when charitable giving gets the most attention.  In order to capitalize on this, it is best to formulate a plan and execute it. 

 Timeline – Pick a strategy and utilize your calendar.  You can be flexible with the timeline as things fall into place, but having it at the start will contribute to a smoother campaign.

 Set Goals – This is how you know if your campaign is successful.  More donations are sure to be a goal, but you may decide that gaining new donors, increasing awareness for your cause or specific calls to action are important measures for your organization.

 Extend your reach – Social media can greatly increase exposure for your organization.  The message should be tailored to each platform, but share an overall cohesiveness that ties back to your organization and campaign?s branding.

Data shows more dollars are donated online in the last five days of December than in the other three weeks combined.

This was true on GiveRichmond in 2013.  December saw six times the donations of any other month.

  46% of all donations through GiveRichmond came in December

  54% of December donations came in the last week of the month

  38% of the donations made in the last week of December were made on New Year?s Eve

This is why SalsaLab suggests sending multiple emails during the month of December, including the very important ask on New Year?s Eve.

85% of organizations raise more money by sending more than one email.

 The first step to a successful email campaign is a clean email list.  An effective email ask will not work if it does not reach the intended audience. 

  An informative email about your impact, mission or goals combats the fatigue of continual asks.  It?s important to remind donors that, although you are in need of their support, their past contributions have made a difference by highlighting some key accomplishments.

  Personalization is great, but individualization is better.  Segmenting your email list allows you to individualize your outreach to the different roles people play for your organization.  This post from SalsaLabs has some useful tips for email segmentation.

In January, when the fury of year-end fundraising has subsided, hold a debrief session where successes and failures are assessed.  Focus on what would be most helpful for next year?s planning.  As always, thank your supporters and let them know how they have helped you carry out your mission.

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GiveRichmond/GiveSouthsideVA is a program of The Community Foundation Serving Richmond & Central Virginia (TCF). As strategic partners with ConnectVA, TCF and GiveRichmond/GiveSouthsdeVA encourage smart giving by identifying trends and success stories in local philanthropy through their Giving Smart blog series. If you have ideas about topics you would like to have covered, please comment below!

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Amazing Raise 2014 Closeup: Southside

The Amazing Raise is a 36-hour give-a-thon that kicks off at 6am on Wednesday, September 17th and goes through 6pm on Thursday, September 18th. Here?s how the Chesterfield-Colonial Heights Christmas Mother is getting ready for the big event! ?The Amazing Raise is a cutting edge means of making the larger community aware of the truly great…

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