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Dear Abby…

January 18, 2013

Abby

Pauline Phillips, the treasured advice columnist who authored “Dear Abby” for so many years, just passed away at the age of 94.  We thought it would be fitting to format today’s blog post in her honor.

DEAR 36-HOUR GIVING CHALLENGE,

We do not have many donors on our “list.” We have few e-mail addresses for the donors we do have. Though we are wondering how to make the most of this opportunity, so many other organizations seem better positioned than we are. Please help us in this digital campaign.

Signed,

WANTING TO ROCK THE GIVING CHALLENGE

___

DEAR WANTING TO ROCK THE GIVING CHALLENGE,

We feel your pain, but what better time than this to get new donors, get better contact information for the donors you do have, reconnect with lapsed donors, and recruit your most passionate supporters to make a difference for you!  All of these possibilities make the Giving Challenge a great opportunity.

What about trying one or more of these action items?

  1. Appeal to your current constituents who have never given. You may be surprised to see how many will contribute at the $25 level.
  2. Ask your volunteers, board members, clients, vendors and staff who are comfortable on Facebook or Twitter to be social media ambassadors for you during the Giving Challenge. Simply sharing the excitement about your organization’s participation can be very compelling on personal Facebook profiles.
  3. Ask the donors you do have for their e-mail addresses in advance. Tell them you want to share the excitement of this special opportunity with them since your cause is so dear to their hearts.
  4. Ask your volunteers, clients and staff to e-mail information about The Giving Challenge to 10 of their closest friends or family members with a personal note about how much your organization means to them and why.  Ask them to visit www.givingpartnerchallenge.org during March 5 and 6 and give online to your organization.
  5. If your nonprofit is going for one of the special grants for the most unique visitors to your profile in The Giving Partner, follow numbers 2, 3 and 4 but change your call to action. Use the special link that’s unique to your organization to make it simple. (If you need help getting that, we can help.)

Remember, success in this campaign can come from inspiring your current constituents to motivate their personal and professional circles to get engaged in your cause. That personal appeal can be very enticing, and it can help your nonprofit move beyond the “list” it currently has.

Now, what you do after the Giving Challenge is a different story. You can’t just forget about your new supporters or your old ones. Thank them, find a way to engage them, and thank them again.

We know you can do it.

Sincerely,

36-HOUR GIVING CHALLENGE

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