April 21, 2020 | Categories DonorPerfect Fundraising Software, Featured, Fundraising Strategies, Nonprofit News, Coronavirus / COVID-19 Nonprofit Resources

7 Ways Your Online Fundraising Software Can Help You Prepare for #GivingTuesdayNow

7 Ways Your Online Fundraising Software Can Help You Prepare for #GivingTuesdayNow

First of all, let us first tell you that you’re doing a great job.

#GivingTuesdayNow is a brilliantly positive response to the COVID-19 pandemic, as its global mission highlights the needs of nonprofit organizations and unites the world around the importance of humanity at this dire time.

But with growing demands for your nonprofit’s services and a displaced team of staff and volunteers to work with, “preparing” for anything new may be the last thing on your mind when you’re just trying to get through one day at a time.

That’s understandable. That’s why we’d like to provide a few suggestions for what you can realistically do now to participate on May 5th and be in a better position with your online fundraising software thereafter.

7 Simple Ways to Prepare for #GivingTuesdayNow

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 1: Align your staff and volunteers around your data entry protocols.

As many people seek to help out during the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be experiencing higher numbers of volunteers or temporary staff members. Having extra hands to help with data entry can be a real relief. But sometimes all those cooks in the kitchen can be uncoordinated, leading to honest, but problematic mistakes that take a lot of time to undo.

To decrease room for errors in your donor database, there are preventative measures you can take:

Only allow trained individuals to enter data.

Ensure that only the right people have access to add or edit codes and other data. Your nonprofit’s donor management system should include individual user settings that you can configure. Make sure that staff, board members, and volunteers have the right data access levels.

Schedule a daily report for new gifts that have been recorded.

This recurring practice makes it more manageable for development staff to review newly entered donation data and correct issues immediately. If your donor management system does not allow for you to schedule reports, you can run this report manually.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 2: Establish new gift codes.

If you haven’t already, create gift codes for your donations related to COVID-19. At the very least, you should have a campaign code that encompasses all of your COVID-19 gifts, no matter where they came from. Additionally, you can create solicitation codes for each channel a gift is received (i.e, your donation form, your social media campaign, mailed-in checks, etc.) so you can more granularly measure your success.

Keeping your gifts aligned under a uniform code will help you greatly when it’s time to run reports and make informed decisions about how you will move forward with your fundraising strategy through the pandemic.

If you use online donation forms like DonorPerfect Online Forms, you can assign codes “behind the scenes” in your form so that the data is automatically stored in your database with the appropriate classifications with every new donation.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 3: Create a designated online donation form.

It’s always a good idea to tailor your donation forms to reflect the goal of each of your fundraising campaigns – especially now! Donors want to know that their donation is specifically benefitting your efforts to combat the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on your mission.

Your online fundraising software may provide you with a form template, designated for #GivingTuesdayNow, complete with the GTNow logo. If you use DonorPerfect Online Forms, the #GivingTuesday template has been updated accordingly for this global day of giving.

Pro tip: People in your community may want to donate, but may be constrained by limited income. Consider encouraging donors to participate in your monthly giving program. Providing a smaller, monthly option will alleviate pressure to give more upfront.

In addition to donors, many corporations are looking for ways to help and may have generously increased their gift match rate. Having a tool like Double the Donation will plug in right to your online donation form, prompting donors to request a gift match from their employer as soon as they make a donation.

Check out more ways to drive conversion with your online donation form here.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 4: Launch a crowdfunding campaign.

One way to lighten the load on #GivingTuesdayNow is to invite your supporters to be your ambassadors through peer-to-peer fundraising. Once you’ve created and shared your initial organization crowdfunding donation form, your supporters can create their own and begin fundraising on your behalf.

Use these templates to more quickly communicate about your crowdfunding campaign and equip fundraisers with the right words to say to their family and friends.

With DonorPerfect Crowdfunding, all the gift and donor information collected by your fundraisers will flow right into your donor management system for you.

Pro tip: By including a video in your crowdfunding form you could receive up to 4x more donations! Get started on making your own DIY fundraising video with the quick tips you’ll find here.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 5: Create mailing lists now.

However you segment your donors, be sure that your nonprofit’s message to each group is specific. If you are able to find time, consider drafting templates for each segment to make the big day a bit more streamlined.

These COVID-19-specific templates can help you engage your donors and raise more throughout the crisis and are easy to copy and paste right into your emails and social media posts.

Some suggested donor groups you may want to include:

Previous #GivingTuesday Donors

If you’ve run a #GivingTuesday campaign in the past, you should recruit those donors now. What inspired them to donate before may be amplified at this unprecedented time.

Your Monthly Donors

Encourage your current monthly donors to increase their monthly gift amount and suggest a new amount. Be sure to explain in your solicitation what the extra dollars will help you to accomplish.

Your Major Donors

Some of your biggest projects can be fully funded by your wealthiest donors. It’s worth appealing to them now with a suggested donation amount. Wealth data tools like DonorSearch help you easily identify these donors within your network and determine an appropriate ask amount.

Corporations and Foundations

Like major donors, corporations and foundations are very capable of making much larger donations. Appeal to corporate donors by assuring them that you will include them as a sponsor on your website, your online auction, etc. as free advertising.

DonorPerfect’s powerful filtering tools make it easy to create donor segments like these. Integrated with Constant Contact email marketing for nonprofits, DonorPerfect’s filters automatically double as mailing lists.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 6: Find out what your peers are doing.

DonorPerfect users have exclusive access to DonorPerfect Community, a virtual portal where nonprofit professionals like you can discuss the COVID-19 pandemic and share ideas about how to overcome it. The DonorPerfect Team invites you to pose your #GivingTuesdayNow questions to the group.

#GivingTuesdayNow Tip 7: Learn More About #GivingTuesdayNow

To assist you with your #GivingTuesdayNow campaign strategy, DonorPerfect is partnering with GivingTuesday and The NonProfit Times in this free webinar, Battling COVID-19 Via #GivingTuesdayNow on April 22 at 2pm ET. Register here.

For more on the GivingTuesdayNow movement and how you can participate visit now.givingtuesday.org.

Perhaps the most important advice we can give is a reminder to be kind to yourself. You’re juggling a lot right now, and at the end of the day, you can only do what you’re able to in a given day. Your #GivingTuesdayNow campaign doesn’t have to be perfect. However, with these steps to prep, we hope you’re better able to manage and see success on this impromptu global day of giving.

Written by Laura Bucher