An email is a great way to reach your donors with one last appeal before 2018 ends. My successful last-minute fundraising efforts have used suggestions, tips and strategies from many different sources, and I’m sharing those in this week’s blog.

I learned about (and used) three different types of messages for an end-of-year email appeal—a message that highlights your successes, perhaps sharing a story about someone your nonprofit has helped, or something your nonprofit has achieved; a simple email from the CEO with organizational news and another opportunity to give is another great message tip; and, if these two don’t meet your needs, try a simple thank you to existing donors.

Most advice (and my experiences) encourage an email appeal as the best mechanism for a last-minute appeal. It’s inexpensive and can generate results quickly.

Here are tips and tricks for your end-of-year email appeal.

  1.  Focus on the donor.
  2. Establish a sense of urgency.
  3. Make sure your links to your donation page and your donate now button are working, and that it’s easy for the donor to navigate your online giving process.
  4. Use every day of the year, sending appeals right up to December 30th or 31st.
  5. Pay close attention to your subject line as it should give the recipient instant information about your appeal, grabbing their attention and getting them to open the email.
  6. Your emails should be short and sweet!
  7. Make sure you have a clear call to action (make an explicit ask).
  8. Make it easy for the donor to make their gift.
  9. Work with a nonprofit consultant to map out a path to success.
  10. Mobilize your supporters through peer-to-peer fundraising.
  11. Maximize your year-end event with mobile and on-site giving tools.
  12. Don’t ignore your matching gift potential.
  13. Stay focused on stewardship throughout your campaign.

Read more at these online resources: