The last phase of your year-end drive actually takes place in January. Not everyone will respond to your year-end appeal before December 31st, often because they’re away on vacation or simply too busy during the holidays. That’s why you want to reach out to all your non-responders just after the holiday season ends. This is also an excellent time to follow up by phone and personally thank the top 20 percent of your donors with a friendly “Happy New Year.” Ideally, your board members can help with those calls, but the development staff and the development committee members must lead the way.
Another important January agenda item is to promptly send out tax receipts. While tax considerations are not the main motivator for most donors, they are important, especially for larger donors. While 41 percent of overall donors said they would claim a charitable tax credit, this figure soared to 75 percent among those whose aggregate yearly giving exceeded $205, and to a whopping 91 percent among those whose giving exceeded $915. Donors will appreciate you reminding them to claim the credits they’ve earned.