6 Tips for planning a
successful End of Year Appeal

30 October 2019

‘Tis the season to be planning!

The end of the year is fast approaching and now is the time to start planning your annual end of year appeal. Whether it's gifting a goat or providing a hot meal, the formula for planning a successful appeal is the same. 

1. Use a single call to action

Creativity is important when it comes to your appeals, but less is often more. Don't over-complicate the ask or the page. Use space to make key points stand out and your primary call to action clear and centre-stage.

Find engaging images that convey emotion and deliver impact. Avoid hitting your donors with a screen full of copy and don’t use scare tactics - be positive and show hope.

PRO TIP: Detect the users IP address and serve up relevant, local content to them based on the state or region they’re in.

2. Make the ask relevant and tangible

Donors want to know they’re making an impact. Make your ask tangible and relevant.

People are more likely to give if it's going to a cause or issue in their own backyard - it's harder to ignore something affecting your own community. 

PRO TIP: Analyse last years donation data - what were the average donation amount cohorts? Within each cohort, how much could you reasonably increase the suggested ask. Need a template for this? No problem just ask us.

3. Convey the impact

What sounds more compelling? 

Donate $50 this Christmas 


$50 will feed 100 people doing it rough this Christmas.

You’ll be competing in a cluttered market for donations during the holiday season so stand out - make your ask specific and demonstrate the real impact each donation will have. Use imagery to convey each donation amounts impact for speed of scanning the page and don’t be shy about automatically pre-selecting a (realistic) donation amount to make it one less click for the donor.

PRO TIP: Use nudges. Create a little FOMO and visually show the average amount people are donating. Our analysis shows that past high-value donors don’t decrease their donation amounts when exposed to a nudge like this, but a significant percentage of lower value donors do increase theirs.

4. Create Urgency

If you’re fortunate enough to be able to say exactly what a donors money goes toward then consider using totalisers that are based on impact and not money. Break up your totalisers into stages with dates. For example:

  • 200,000 meals delivered by December 1
  • 400,000 meals delivered by December 15
  • 1,000,000 meals delivered by Christmas Day

Pre-make progress graphics to share on social channels throughout your campaign so when you reach your milestones you’re ready to post.

PRO TIP: Have some great corporate donors? Let them know you’d love to use their upcoming donations for a Matched Giving campaign during the appeal. It will let you create that sense of urgency to rally your donors into giving more themselves and in sharing their donation socially - with a custom message you write of course.

5. Keep the form simple

Don't ask for unnecessary data. 

If it’s not critical to the appeal, ask for the information later. Here’s a couple of ways:

  • Setup a custom thank you page and insert a web form at that point in the process (when they’ve completed their donation)
  • Add a link in the receipt email that takes the donor to a page where they can complete the additional information you’re after

What are some examples of non-critical data captured? Title, Gender, DOB, most likely Address, anything that’s just a nice to have and a ‘maybe I’ll use information later some time so better collect it now’. Try and aim just for firstname, lastname and email. That’s it.

PRO TIP: Keep your donation form high on the page, for both desktop and mobile. Let the supporting content do just that, support the form, not lead with it. Support your donation form with content that addresses any FAQs on the same page lower down.

6. Thank your donors

Build the relationship to increase LTV. 

Do more than just the bare minimum, surprise and delight them every chance you get. Try it on the thank you page and within the confirmation email sent containing their receipt. 

Use personalisation tags to address the donor by their first name, confirm their donation amount, reassure them what their money is funding and what their impact has been. 

Be sure to send a campaign follow up to all donors letting them know the total outcome of your appeal and the meaningful impact it’s created - drive the sense of community.

PRO TIP: Add a snippet of code to your confirmation page allowing you to set up dynamic Custom Audience targetting on Facebook and automatically serve up low-cost messages to the friends of successful donors who fit the demographic profile of your ideal donor.

Talk to us about setting up your next appeal

We're here to help! Drop a support ticket into your platform, or if you're new to Funraisin we'd love to chat - get in touch with us below.

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