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Tips and Tools to Maximize Year-End Giving

Tips and Tools to Maximize Year-End Giving

Fundraisers face immense pressure to create successful year-end campaigns. And it’s no wonder: Nonprofits rake in around 40 percent of their annual revenue, on average, during the holidays, according to Charity Navigator.

But this year’s giving season comes with a new wrinkle. Many charities are wondering how the new tax law will affect their bottom line now that the doubling of the standard deduction gives fewer Americans a financial incentive to give. In fact, this change may reduce total giving by up to $20 billion, research shows, which translates into a loss of 3 to 5 cents on every dollar raised, based on last year’s fundraising haul.

The good news? There are lots of ways to turn the risks into an opportunity for growth, says Dan Thain, a creative director at the consulting firm Blue State Digital. Double down on your midlevel donors, Thain says. “By upping your offer (through exclusive access, perks, or high-value premiums), you may be able to offset potential revenue loss by increasing donors’ propensity to support your cause.”

It’s also smart to experiment with messages unrelated to tax incentives, says Amy Ricigliano, vice president of client services at Eidolon Communications. This year Eidolon is advising clients to test email subject lines and senders, matching-gift amounts, and “anything that we can think of to maximize our efforts online by the end of December,” she says.

Here is a collection of articles offering more tips like these. You’ll also find tools for planning an effective campaign and proven tactics to boost year-end results.