December 6, 2021

6 Tips to Boost Your Year-End Appeal


End-of-Year giving is a BIG deal for nonprofits. Billions of dollars are raised in a few days. In fact, nearly a third of annual giving happens in the month of December. 

The year-end giving period generally starts with Giving Tuesday and lasts all the way to New Year’s Eve. Making your direct mail and email appeals as appealing as possible during this time is a must do!

Here’s how you can put more Y.O.U. in your E.O.Y. for greater R.O.I. to boost the results of your nonprofit fundraising year-end appeals. 

Let’s start with the Y.O.U….

[Y] = You

Using “You” language is key to writing a powerful year-end giving message. Words like “you” and “your” versus “we” and “our” speak directly to the reader. 

This tip helps engage donors in your message and mission. Helping to ensure your direct mail letters and emails are friendly and conversational.

[O] = Outcomes

Another essential element of your end-of-year giving message is your outcomes. You want to showcase the impact your nonprofit makes – how you are changing the world. 

This is a balance of by-the-number results and emotional storytelling. Your message should pull heartstrings AND have proof points of your work. 

This tip helps donors understand why they should give and shows how your organization stands apart from other charities. 

[U] = Urgency

Since this is the end of the giving season, your urgency is somewhat cooked in. However, you still need to be upfront with your ask.

This is a simple reminder that it’s your donor’s last chance to make an impact this year. Keep in mind that urgency doesn’t mean desperation. 

This tip lets givers know there’s still time to make a difference for those you serve. Not backfill your operational expenses or budgetary shortfalls. Keep your message positive and future focused. 

Now let’s talk about E.O.Y….

[E] = Envelope

Direct mail is the most popular medium for year-end asks. Make sure your end-of-year direct mail appeal includes a reply envelope. 

You want to make it as easy as possible for donors to give. Plus, reply envelopes let you promote recurring gifts and planned giving opportunities. 

This tip will help boost your return on investment.

[O] = Online

Email is the runner-up for the most popular medium used to make year-end asks. This means your online donation page that your emails link to needs to be on point.

Be sure your donation page and your donation form are easy to use and they reinforce your brand and mission.

This tip helps you maximize the final days of year-end donations. 

[Y] = Yippee!

The letter “Y” also stands for “Yaba-daba-do”, “Yahoo” and straight up “Yay!” In other words, after you send out your final fundraising appeals for the year it’s time to celebrate. 

And remember, “Y” also stands for “You”. Start prepping thank you notes now to send out as soon as your year-end gifts start rolling in.

Now to recap, you can boost your year-end appeal by:

  1. Using “You” language.
  2. Showcasing your “Outcomes”.
  3. Reminding donors of the “Urgency” of their gift.
  4. Enclosing a reply “Envelope”.
  5. Shaping up your “Online” donation page.
  6. Celebrating your kick “Yass” accomplishments!

Best of luck putting more Y.O.U. in your E.O.Y. for greater R.O.I. this year. See more marketing tips for nonprofits and if need a hand, contact us