What Is an Annual Fundraising Plan?

Annual fundraising is a series of actions that are deliberately planned to create and cultivate a broad base of donor support in order to ensure that an organization’s objective is fulfilled. Your fundraising strategy should ideally contain your overall fundraising objective as well as the techniques you intend to utilize to achieve it. A Non Profit Fundraising Plan is a written document that outlines your organization’s planning for fundraising efforts over a specific time period. This plan usually includes financial objectives as well as a strategy for achieving these objectives through charity marketing. Proceed to the annual fundraising plan example to see more details.

Elements of an Annual Fundraising Plan

If you want to generate enough money to adequately finance your nonprofit’s excellent work, you will need a fundraising strategy. You will spend a lot of time responding to the crises of the day if you don’t have a strategy, which means you won’t be actively working toward your Objectives. This is why a strategy is critical to assist you in doing the wonderful work of improving lives that you do. Here are six elements that must be included in your annual fundraising strategy if you want to be successful.

Impact Goal: An impact Goal is a measurable target for the good your charity wants to do this year. It’s all about the change you want to see in the world. If your organization is a food pantry, for example, your impact goal may be to double the number of individuals you feed. These examples are easily quantifiable and will serve as a direction for the nonprofit’s year-round activity. To put it another way, only do activities that will assist you to achieve your impact goal.Donor Retention Goal: Retention is a popular issue in the fundraising market right now, and it refers to the number of contributors who donate year after year. Retention rates will decrease as time passes. Due to a change of mind by the donor or for other reasons. By having a donor retention goal in your strategy, you are intentionally emphasizing its importance, and you will be more likely to adopt fundraising techniques that will help you achieve it.Donor Acquisition Goal: You will need a target for how many new Donations you want to bring in for the current or projected year you are setting the plan up. Otherwise, you will just accept whatever new donors come along, which won’t be enough to compensate for the ones you lose during the previous years. In other words, if you don’t work hard to expand your donor base, it will eventually disappear. And it is a given that donors play a vital role in fundraising gatherings.Monetary Objective: Make sure you are clear and transparent about how much Money you want to raise. Don’t just raise as much money as you can and then try to figure out what to do with it. That is incorrect practice and you are setting yourself to fail or be even more confused in the future. Make a list of the services you want to offer, the inclusions of the fundraising, and then figure out how much it will cost. All direct and indirect expenditures should be included. This is the amount you must raise. It’s simpler to know whether you have reached your fundraising goal when you have a quantifiable target.Timetable: You will need a tool to keep track of what needs to happen and when as part of your strategy. Creating and drafting a Timeline is necessary when making any plan. It will assist you in staying on track so that you can complete tasks up until the last minute. Include as much information as possible on your timeline to make it easy to handle afterward. Instead, be more open to minor changes and adapt quickly to the situation. See the fundraising calendar template to lessen the hassle in this process.Action plans: Action Plans go through the who, what, when, and how which showcases and make sure that your strategy is detailed. If you have fundraising employees or volunteers, they are essential so that you can ensure that everything gets done and that the work is distributed properly.

How to Write an Annual Fundraising Plan

Regardless of the size and population or maturity and years of experience of your nonprofit’s fundraising organization, there are six fundamental stages to drafting an annual fundraising strategy plan. You may use these steps to establish a strategy that will guide all of your fundraising operations for the coming year, even if your organization has just recently formed and just started. Check out the available nonprofit annual fundraising plan sample that is provided in this article for you to base your plan on as you write it. Otherwise, if you want to start from scratch, then this guide will show you the steps.

Step 1: Take notes from the past

Take a serious look at what you have accomplished in the last year or so. It’s critical to base your selections on evidence rather than emotion when deciding which fundraising initiatives to include in your strategy. Don’t do something just because you have done it before or because it seems easy. Do it because the figures suggest you will earn a solid return on your investment. Review your former records of what you did last year to raise money and determine if the investment was worthwhile. You can skip this stage this year if your organization is completely new. However, be prepared to do it again the next year. So keep a close eye on your gathered information.

Step 2: Set an impact goal

Many people in fundraising make the mistake of quickly being sidetracked by the current fad and may not always see projects through to completion. For example, a fun, new social media site appears, and you decide you need to be a part of it. You put in a lot of effort to grow a following, but you have no plan for monetizing it. Your donor development isn’t being done while you are experimenting with the new social media tool. You see a successful fundraiser at the nonprofit down the street and figure you can do it too. What you truly need is a beacon to keep you on track and keep the distractions at bay.

Step 3: Include critical goals

Your yearly fundraising strategy must include fundraising targets. It’s difficult to recognize when you have crossed the finish line when there’s no obvious aim. Calculate how much money you will need to conduct your programs this year, and use that figure as your fundraising target. If you have to estimate expenditures, do so, but the more precise your numbers are, the less scrambling you will have to do afterward. The total number of current contributors who have agreed to renew their support. Donor acquisition efforts should be a big part of your fundraising plan if you want to keep adding new members to your donor family.

Step 4: Use fundraising skills to your advantage

Copying what others are doing because it seems nice is one of the worst things you can do in fundraising. Instead, consider fundraising initiatives that use your own abilities as well as the assets of your nonprofit organization. Make a list of organizational qualities or assets that might help you raise money more easily, such as a compelling purpose, a broad base of support, well-known staff or board members, a building that lends itself well to a tour, and a website with daily visits. You will find fundraising simpler and more enjoyable if you build your fundraising plan around your own talents and the assets of your organization.

Step 5: Choose the right strategies

The previous four processes come together in this step to form the foundation of your fundraising strategy. Evaluate the previous stages up until the present step as you consider what activities you want to include in your fundraising strategy this year. Make sure that what you have finalized is fitting to the vision, mission, and even the objectives of your fundraising organization. Whether or not it is directly aligned is up to you but the more that the connection can be seen is for the better so that donors and interested volunteers can see the relation of the plan to your fundraising organization.

Step 6: List and write it out

Your annual fundraising strategy should be written out. If it isn’t written down, it can’t be realized. If it’s all in your brain, it’s far too simple to modify it or let things pass, which leads to a lack of accountability. Most individuals waste time deciding which format to use, but the fact is that it doesn’t matter. Use whichever template allows you to incorporate the detail that will support your aims and that it fits your organization’s preferences. You should also finalize the activities to collect enough money and expand the number of programs you provide. Consider how you might collect significant funds to support your nonprofit’s initiatives.

Reasons People Don’t Plan

After years of helping people create fundraising plans, There are various reasons as to why people don’t plan and the curated list below will give you some of the factors that stop them from coming up with a plan. This is not meant to discourage you but instead would encourage you to think about the importance of an annual fundraising plan. There are free annual fundraising plan template available for you to use as you wish. So you don’t have to start from scratch.

Perfectionism: This is the desire to get it perfect, which goes hand in hand with pressure. Perfectionists require perfection in their fundraising strategy or they will not engage in it at all. Before they can start their yearly fundraising campaign, they need the proper template, all of the correct statistics and historical data, and the exact strategic plan. Because they can’t take the notion of someone criticizing their plan and implying that it isn’t flawless after all, perfectionists either don’t start or start but can’t finish.Firm: Some people dislike putting their fundraising strategy in writing or discussing their ideas with others because it makes them feel like their plans are set in stone. They want the flexibility to modify their strategy on the fly, and they don’t want to have to justify why they did something different than what was intended for their organization board or team.Inadequacy: Some individuals can’t start working on a fundraising strategy until they have all the information they need. They require one more donor report from their documents, one more piece of financial data, or another meeting with their Board of Directors. They never seem to have the appropriate facts and knowledge to put together their strategy. As a result, they spend some time doing some further study before proceeding with their strategy.

Building the Right Team

No one can carry out a strategy on their own. It is critical to include your board and employees in the development of your strategic strategy. Your strategic plan will contain a number of fundraising options, and your staff will be well-versed in a range of skills. Whether you employ your Team for different campaigns or to achieve different goals, you will want to put together a group that will benefit your company the most.

Donors to be Solicited: Find volunteers, board members, or staff people who know some of your large contributors personally. Work with them to strengthen your relationship with contributors and develop a different fundraising strategy to address the donor’s specific interest in your organization.Committees for Special Events: Is there a volunteer who enjoys designing? What about a member of the board who bakes delectable cakes? These abilities may be put to good use during fundraising events for your organization. Encourage your volunteers and board members to participate in an event committee and provide their knowledge.Solicitation of Partnerships: You never know where a business partnership will take you. A local business may be interested in employing you for a company volunteer day, but that does not rule out the possibility of turning that interest into a sponsorship. Your board members can help you transform a one-day meeting with a corporation into a long-term relationship.Campaigns on Social Media: Crowdfunding and peer-to-peer campaigning are becoming increasingly popular. The success of these initiatives is dependent on your interaction with volunteers who have their own enormous communities. Encouraging volunteers to take the lead in these activities can help your organization generate donations and become excellent fundraisers.


Why do you need a yearly fundraising strategy?

Many advantages will come from your flawed and flexible fundraising approach. Your plan will serve as a Road Map throughout the year, ensuring that you are always aware of what is coming up. You will also have a solid understanding of cash flow for the year if you include revenue estimates. You will be more productive since you will be focusing on tasks that will help you achieve your objectives. You will also be able to focus your time, energy, and money on activities that will provide you with the best return on investment.

What are the different types of fundraising methods?

  • Direct Mail
  • Events
  • Online Donations
  • Door-to-Door Solicitation
  • Phone Solicitations
  • E-mail Marketing
  • Crowdfunding
  • Partnerships or Sponsorships
  • Peer-to-Peer Fundraising

What is the significance of yearly giving?

Annual giving programs are the basis for growing cause recognition, discovering what motivates contributors, trying worthy solicitation and stewardship tactics, increasing fundraising retention, and introducing new supporters to your organization, in addition to raising monetary value for a cause. So you should come up with an appropriate annual giving fundraising plan now.

As part of the strategic fundraising, creating an annual fundraising plan is more beneficial to you and your organization. Although it may seem time-consuming and you and your team would be tempted to jump right into the action, having a plan will help keep things organized for the pre-planning process and actual execution.