Nov 21, 2021

5 Creative Ideas to Expand Your Donor Base by Year-End

Group of people sitting outside and laughing

The changing leaves, sweater weather and pumpkin spice-everything is just around the corner.  Before we know it, it will be time for your annual Year-End campaign; the last push to raise funds for your cause. The more donors you have in your database, the more opportunities for receiving those important year-end donations. In the coming months, you can set yourself up for end of the year success with a few creative ideas to increase your donor base and, ultimately, donations.

1. Hold a Contest

Poster advertising a contest for tickets to the anniversary of Apollo 8

Create a contest to give away something fun like ‘name the puppies’, meet and greet with a dignitary, admittance to your fall fundraiser, theater or sporting event tickets that have been donated, a poem or story written by a beneficiary, or special entrance into a walk/run event. Create a form to capture, at a minimum, the name and email address for each entry. Be sure you promote the contest via social media, newsletter, website and text message to better connect with and inspire engagement with supporters.

2. Text-In-Trivia

Woman holding a phone with both hands

Write out some creative trivia questions related to your cause and ask people to text in to get the answers (you capture the mobile number for everyone who texts into the game). You can promote these trivia games while you are at street fairs, community events or health expos for in-the-moment fun that drives awareness of your cause and helps capture information for future, Year-End correspondence.

3. Facebook Live

Individual holding a phone for a livestream

Host a Facebook Live tour of your office or interview someone who has benefitted from your work. You can even introduce your staff and have them share what they are working on and what they love about your organization. Have them ask viewers to text in their questions during the broadcast so they can learn more about what your organization is doing to help your cause (phone numbers are captures). Or create a form to submit questions and share a keyword and shortcode on your Live broadcast for people to use to get there. Don’t forget to add a link to it in your Facebook post! 

4. Survey Your Donors

Poster advertising a text survey

Send a survey to your supporters to discover how they would like to receive information from you–direct mail, email, text or social media–and modify your communication plans and channels accordingly. Maybe even ask them what kind of content they’d like to see from your organization or how they’d like to stay involved. This type of communication will go a long way in building trust and loyalty with your donors.

5. Text Messaging

Habitat for Humanity text messaging

Establish a “text-for-information” shortcode and keyword to provide links to valuable information such as articles, brochures, videos and demonstrations of impact. This is a great way to share information while you are out in the community meeting with new constituents and furthering your mission.

These are just a few ways to make increasing your donor database fun and it presents a great opportunity to better connect with current supporters. Whatever ideas you put into action, be sure you provide something interesting, relevant and beneficial to supporters. Donors will welcome your communications when they include compelling content. So grab your favorite fall treat and get going on some of these creative ways to boost your reach and build your roster of potential donors before you launch your next Year-End fundraising campaign.


March 27, 2023

15 Spring Fundraising Ideas for Your K-12 School 

April through June is a busy time at schools! It is full of concerts, field…

Read More
March 21, 2023

“Retailing and Partnering with Nonprofits”

How to start a fundraising program and make a difference This article originally appeared in…

Read More
March 16, 2023

How to Organize a Charity Sports Event

A sports event is a fun, upbeat, and lucrative way to raise money for your…

Read More

What our clients say

We needed a platform to make sales online and to track and display ads for our sponsors. GiveSmart was perfect. We ended up making close to $15,000 more than we had hoped for. Definite better ROI than we anticipated. The interface is easy to use and provides plenty of options to get help if needed.

Michelle M.

The Rotary Club of South Whidbey Island

Using GS has created ease in auction bookkeeping, payments, and generating post-event thank you/tax letters. While we were online during COVID, our interactions with our GiveSmart via phone, email, and zoom were seamless. A representative always got back to us within the day. I would recommend GiveSmart to anyone doing a large online event.

Julie G.

MicroFinancing Partners in Africa

GiveSmart is highly flexible - you can use it for [a] simple registration and check-in, to full-scale galas with complex order forms, onsite upsells, live auctions, seating management, and more.

Jamie F.

Hope Chest for Breast Cancer

GiveSmart is easy to use and ideal for virtual events and can be used for in-person events to manage the silent auction, seating charts, and check-in to the event. Being able to use the platform for unlimited events within the contract year is very useful and being able to add other users and volunteers for different levels of access is helpful as well.

Dawn L.

Literacy Coalition of Palm Beach County