For digital directors, the end-of-year fundraising push is one of the most exhausting and high-stress times of the year. But as tiresome as it is for your team, it might be even more so for your supporters.
You probably just sent them 3–5 emails every day for two weeks, and they’ve given you every dollar they have to give. At this point, asking them for more money the day after your major deadline is just downright impolite.
But… you can’t stop emailing them, and your boss still expects results. So what do you do?
Here are a few ways to keep engaging your supporters and nurturing your list in the wake of the end-of-year fundraising push.
Thank Them For Their Help
You’ve just spent weeks asking your supporters for money: raising the stakes and elevating expectations with every email.
Whether you met your goal, fell short, or blew it out of the water, your supporters are likely feeling exactly how you’re feeling. They’re watching the news reports, checking the totals from other campaigns, and evaluating whether they did enough to help the movement succeed.
So in these first weeks post-deadline, be sure to remove any doubt from their minds. Thank them for their work. Make sure they know they made a difference. And when you do, be as specific as you can about the impact that their contribution made towards your shared success.
Ask Them For Their Feedback
People need to be appreciated, so thanking your supporters will go a long way towards rebuilding the relationship you strained with all those fundraising appeals.
But people need to feel heard almost as much as they need to feel appreciated, and that’s why asking for their feedback and advice is a great next step in your start-of-quarter fundraising plan.
Using one of NationBuilder’s Feedback or Survey pages, you can make it easy for supporters to share their views and shape the future of your campaign. The information they provide can also be instrumental in informing your future messaging and engagement strategy.
Asking for feedback is a win-win strategy that makes your supporters feel heard and provides your team with essential insight into the people behind your movement.
Reward Them For Their Support
If all went according to plan, you just raised a fair bit of money as a result of your end-of-year fundraising push.
Now, you might consider spending a portion of it on thanking your supporters.
Create a batch of exclusive campaign stickers or t-shirts and reward your supporters with a free gift. And not just the donors. All of them.
Create a NationBuilder Signup page, and tell everyone on your list that all they need to do is sign up there to receive the free swag. Then, chain them along to a donation page to — optionally — contribute a few dollars to help cover shipping costs. (You’ll be surprised by how many do.)
This approach has so many benefits!
- Your supporters will feel valued and appreciated;
- When they display/wear the swag, you’ll get free advertising;
- You’ll earn the physical/street addresses of supporters who may not have donated yet; and
- You might actually raise a net profit from the optional donations.
This is a low-risk, high-reward move that every campaign ought to try.
The Bottom Line
While it’s bad manners to continue aggressive fundraising solicitations in the days and weeks following a major deadline push, that’s no excuse for your campaign to stop emailing its supporters.
Savvy campaigns will use this period to re-engage supporters, build trust, and deepen relationships. And — surprise! — you might even raise a little money in the process!