Non-profits are one of many industries that have been significantly impacted this past year during the pandemic. For organizations who have historically relied on live, in-person events to help raise awareness and fund develop, many have had to pivot and creatively solve this unique challenge. We recently had an opportunity to put together a quick, budget-conscious campaign for our friends at Easterseals Arc of Northeast Indiana.
The unique challenge in this case was: ‘ How do we optimize a fund development initiative during a heavily crowded ‘Giving Tuesday’ in a region that has no shortage of non-profits?’.
This day of giving had not been a priority for Easterseals in prior years and historically only generated about $1k - $2k in total funds. Additionally, 2020 stakes were even higher as they were given an opportunity to double their fundraiser’s impact (up to $10k) due to a generous donor match campaign offered by the AWS Foundation. This made it even more important to ensure that 2020’s Giving Tuesday was a huge success!
The Proposed Approach:
In collaboration with the Easterseals team, we established a game plan that used existing channels where the client had a strong following or a database of contacts. These included a prior donor database of emails and Easterseals social media following (specifically on Facebook). The proposed approach kept the below critical elements priority throughout the campaign.
Warm up the database – Send several emails weeks in advance; sharing with Easterseals donors and advocates about the upcoming Giving Tuesday opportunity and how their generosity that day could have double the impact.
Provide a reminder – We all like to work from our calendars in some capacity, but people are likely not going to add a virtual fund-raising event to their already busy schedule, right? Instead, we utilized a Facebook Event to as our Call-to-Action landing page from each email to gain followers who could opt into ‘going’ or show that they were ‘interested’ in the upcoming event. This served a dual purpose, as organically those who opted into the event were likely showing up in their friend’s news feed about how they were supporting this event.
Support ongoing awareness – As part of the initiative, we wanted their network to also see them actively engaging with both boosted and organic social posts to raise awareness to a larger audience, while reinforcing the message to email recipients. We found that a combination of static posts and short quick social videos helped keep the messaging engaging.
Day of event push – With this campaign having a donor match initiative ONLY good for donations on that specific day, it was imperative that we optimized our messaging and pushed for donor engagement the day of ‘Giving Tuesday’. To do so, we leveraged multiple Facebook Live videos from their Director of Development, published various organic social posts, utilized the Facebook Event automated reminders, and sent a final email to a past donor list. The focus of the messaging in this last final push re-emphasized the sense of urgency of the 1-day fund drive while also highlighting how donor’s funds would make a greater impact on those served in the Easterseals organization.
We are excited to share that the outcome of the campaign not only exceeded the initial goal of $10k raised to maximize the donor match, but we were thrilled to see approximately $23k total in funds raised for the entire initiative! Easterseals was grateful to have such a strong donor network and generous community that supports their non-profits. Especially during a year where so many have been impacted personally and financially.