Four Proactive Steps to Make Year-End Giving Keep on Giving

Laura Butler December 7, 2016 Nonprofits

Giving Tuesday is over and it’s time to make your last major fundraising and engagement push of the year.  While most good donor development teams are planning their final event and/or fundraising appeal of the year, you can be truly exceptional by also planning in advance how you’re going to leverage success to make next year’s impact even bigger!

YourCause is here to help you be exceptional by outlining four proactive steps to make year-end giving keep on giving!  In today’s blog, we will discuss:

  • Recording Information
  • Analyzing Results
  • Engaging Your Supporters
  • Sharing Stories of Impact

These tips will help to build the lasting relationships and sustained growth that will uphold your operations.

Overview of Four Tips for End of Year Giving

1 – Record Information

Update your organization’s Constituent Relationship Management (CRM) or donor management system with data for contributors that participated in Giving Tuesday or your year end. Create or modify profiles and giving histories for donors, volunteers, or event attendees that made your success possible.

By keeping constituent and gift records up-to-date in your relationship management system, you can track engagement habits over time and create more custom outreach to match the individual’s giving patterns.


2 – Analyze Results

Measure your results objectively to see how your outcomes varied from your projections.

Important Questions to ask: How did you measure up regarding the metrics you set during the planning phase? Did you have higher or lower turnout than expected? Did you meet your goals?

When comparing your results to your projections, consider the overall efficacy of this year’s campaign– what worked well and what can you learn from for next year? Falling short of your goal is OK- but use this as a learning opportunity for your organization’s next big fundraiser.


3 – Engage Your Supporters

Thank your constituents by crafting a sincere and personalized thank you letter; you can save time doing this using mail merge to automate the recipient and email address. Send these to donors and volunteers as well as any participating companies that helped make your Giving Tuesday or year-end a success.

Make each contribution a ‘gift that keeps on giving’ back to the donor by sharing with supporters the impact of their contributions. This transparency builds a deeper connection between the donor, your organization, and the mission you serve.

To show your donors how these funds are used, provide a simple breakdown of donation distribution through your various programs, services, and operational expenses. Example: X% of donations go directly to programs and services; of which Y% and Z% are distributed to specific services within your community.

Finally, don’t forget to show appreciation for any employees and ongoing volunteers whose efforts helped make Giving Tuesday and your year-end a success.


4 – Share Your Impact

Create a visually appealing report on your results detailing the outcomes and how they will be used to create true impact for your constituents.

Demonstrate the flow of dollars between funds raised and social impact created:Graphic showing the three ways for NPO to Share Impact

  • Fundraising Outcomes: Money raised or number of hours volunteered
  • Social Impact: Use the fund allocation ratios you shared with donors to project the total dollar value of impact that will go to your main programs and services. A simple way to accomplish this would be to multiply the respective ratios by the total funds raised.
  • Tell a Story: Collect and share anecdotes about recipients who have been impacted by your services. Empathy is at the root of generosity; remind the donor they are making a real difference in someone’s life.

Share this report with your supporters through a variety of avenues. Some examples of sharable platforms are your organization’s website, social media, end-of-year newsletter or appeal, and future e-mail outreaches.

If you benefited from a company whose employees gave and engaged heavily on Giving Tuesday, reach out to their HR and ask to be directed to their head of Corporate Social Responsibility to thank them for the impact of their organization’s programs.

Send pictures, stories, and outcomes to the official Giving Tuesday site at

Send a follow-up email to your participants in December and/or January providing accounts of the good work you have been able to accomplish with the funds you raised.  Use this opportunity to provide information on upcoming events or fundraisers, and mention other ways they can show support in the future.



Your weeks or months of planning for Giving Tuesday and Calendar Year End is only beginning to pay off as you get to see the results of your efforts roll in through new relationships, visibility, and of course donations.  Your hard work up to this point deserves praise, but as we have demonstrated — the job is far from over!  By following these guidelines, your long-term results can continue to grow far beyond November and December — don’t miss out on this important opportunity!