Fundraising Tips

6 Tips for a Successful Holiday Fundraising Campaign

November 23, 2020

With over 25% of annual donations in Canada made during the month of December, there’s no doubt that it is a busy time for charities like yourself. But did you know that 15% of year end donations are received on December 31st? That’s right, a huge amount of donations are made up until the very last minute of the year! Starting out your campaign strong is important, but it’s making it to the finish line that has the biggest impact! With inspiration from the organizations we work with, we’ve gathered some tips to ensure that you make the most of this time of year.

Whether those 6 tips help you start a new campaign or add to your current one, they'll sure help you maximize your Holiday fundraising goals.

Tip #1 - Bring your donors together through peer-to-peer

When it comes to fundraising, you rely on your community to reach your goals. Peer-to-peer campaigns are the perfect solution to come together (even if that can’t be in person quite yet). You might be thinking that a peer-to-peer campaign takes weeks to organize. It doesn’t! Using Zeffy's peer-to-peer tools, the Halifax Lancers was able to set up their campaign within only a few days! They set their initial goal at $15 000, but thanks to the enthusiasm of their participants (over 50 individual and team campaigns were created) they are about to hit their new goal of $25 000.

Tip #2 - Get creative with your campaign ideas

You might be thinking that finding a new and creative idea may be easier said than done. That may be true, but luckily, we have a few amazing examples to inspire you.

The Rainbow Society of Alberta is spreading cheer online, by using Zeffy ticketing to raise money to grant the wishes for children with severe illnesses. They are doing this through their Gift of Hope campaign, where you can buy decorations to decorate their virtual Christmas tree. With the ticketing integrated directly into their website, donors can easily purchase presents, lights ornaments and more. Check out all the amazing decorations below. The Rainbow Society even added the messages left by donors below the image.

Other great examples include the Tis the Season Tree Sale by Big Brothers Big Sisters of London. You can decorate your home for the holidays all while empowering at risk children in the London, Ontario community.

Finally, the Endowment Fondation of Jonquière Health is running their Campaign of Lights to raise money to continue to offer quality health services in the Saguenay and Lac St-Jean regions. Each donation buys a light for the Christmas illuminated in front of the Jonquière hospital. Along with beautiful imagery, the campaign thermometer is integrated into their website to demonstrate the fundraiser’s progress.

Tip #3 - Encourage donations as gifts

With shopping in person limited right now, why not help donors out by giving them gift ideas for their loved ones? Whether you offer a beautiful gift card with your donations or sell actual gifts, the opportunities are endless. Here are some great ideas from our Zeffy communities.

Replace your gift to your loved one with a gift to someone in need. Fondation Fémina has done just that by creating a campaign where donation amounts will provide a gift to women and children that are victims of domestic violence.

Offer something comforting and delicious to your community (that they can regift) like the Canadian Mental Health Association of Grey Bruce. They are selling cinnamon buns and have already hit record sales numbers.

What’s says Christmas better than a beautiful poinsettia? The Christian Community School is selling the potted plants to get into the holiday spirit. The sale was so popular they have already sold out!

Tip #4 - Ensure your donors can visualize their impact

When you announce your campaign, be sure to explain what the funds will be going to. Use examples so that your donors can visualize their impact. Be sure to include clear instructions on how they can support you. Link your campaign form in your email and social media posts and make sure it takes them directly to where they can make their contribution.

Tip #5 - Shout out your most avid supporters

Do you have volunteers, organizers or donors that have gone above and beyond? Will their work inspire others? Be sure to highlight them through social media! It doesn’t need to be anything fancy, and it could be a simple share of their posts, but this creates a larger sense of community. Not only does the supporter feel valued, but others are encouraged to do the same work too! Spreading the warmth is so important during the holiday season.

Tip #6 - Send fundraising progress updates to your donors – up until the very end!

So you’ve sent out emails and posted on social media to announce that your campaign is launched. Now what? The truth is your supporters can forget, or your initial message may not have resonated with them. Make sure to check in mid-campaign make an update on your progress and explain why their support is so important. This means phrasing how you ask differently. For example, after initially saying: “We are looking to raise $10 000 for school supplies for 1000 children.” You might want to further explain the impact the supplies will have: “We need your support to allow children to get the proper materials they need to succeed in class.”

Don’t forget about the final push. In the last few days of your campaign, check back in with donors. Remind them that it is not too late to donate and that their support can still make a huge difference.