If you’re like me, you look forward to buying a new calendar or tearing off each completed month on your desk calendar (yes, I have a paper calendar on my desk). But, as the year comes to a close and you begin to tidy up your year-end giving, it’s also important to plan for the future.
What donors will you reach out to and when? How will you thoughtfully engage them? And what cultivation strategies do you have planned? Like any good planner, it’s time to fill in your annual fundraising plan and calendar.
Your annual fundraising plan is a snapshot of your cultivation and care activities broken down by giving levels, timeline, and who will help implement your plan. It will also include your development team meetings, fundraising and cultivation events, and donor engagement activities.
For instance, in January I’m going to review my case statement (which is an ever-changing document) but also meet with my development team to discuss donor meetings and strategize. In February, according to my plan, we’ll send communications discussing our regional forums and begin cultivation meetings for a May event.
Having this plan and calendar will keep you on track for your fundraising activities and can help with yearly projections. These documents are not yours alone, but are meant to be shared with your president, development team, and other development staff. The more eyes and input, the better. Having the calendar and plan laid out will build your confidence, knowing that your year is on paper, ready to go. So go ahead and buy that new 2019 calendar and let the planning begin!
- Keri Davidson, Director of Development & Membership
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