Creating a Fundraising Timeline

Tuesday September 14, 2021 comments

Any accounting business and tax advice contained in this podcast is not intended as a thorough in depth analysis of specific issues. Nor is it a substitute for format information. Nor is it sufficient to avoid tax related penalties. If you have specific questions that you need advice for, be sure to schedule a strategy session and not solely rely on information in this podcast. All right, back to the episode. 

Hey, this is Chyla Graham, you are listening to another episode of The Nonprofit Ace Podcast. I'm a licensed certified accountant and I work solely with nonprofits because I want more nonprofit leaders to be comfortable talking about money and asking questions. This is not a fundraising podcast. But I realized as we're going into the fall into fundraising seasons, for organizations, this is something worth talking about. 

So as we wrap up this season, I do want to leave you with one thing to consider and maybe it's not something you’d change right now. But you plan ahead, is the timing of your annual campaign or your major fundraiser, the right timing. So the reason I say this is because you might find that you are asking people for money in a timeline that doesn't suit your actual operational needs. So if you find that you have a drought of giving in the summer, but you don't do your fundraiser until fall, is your timing appropriate? 

Would it be more beneficial to say, hey, our fundraiser is actually in April, because we know going into Q two and three, we're low on funding then. So we want to get a boost via this annual campaign or this fundraiser. Another reason to consider the timing is maybe you should consider doing your annual campaign at the beginning of our fiscal year or at the end of the fiscal year. 

So if you do at the beginning of the year, you know that you've done your biggest push, now you're playing, maybe catch up and saying, Oh, this is what else we need to raise to meet those goals. versus if you do it at the end of the year, you might be struggling and limping along all year long hoping, okay, in December, we'll get the money we need. Well, at that point, it might be too late. Like maybe now you've had layoffs. 

So you need to think about, well, what is the best timing? What's the most appropriate timing for our work? Not what other organizations are doing. Not based off of, oh, what people like to give in December. What is it that you need, make that connection with your donor base so that they know, while a gift anytime is great, a gift specifically in April is good to help us to get through the summer. 

So that's it this season, I really wanted to answer some questions that have been burning for me. And that I thought that, you know, why wouldn't you want to hear my opinion on it? And so as you're thinking about, what does the fall hold? Maybe what you should consider as you go into your budget season. Yeah, that's right, budgeting is coming up. As you're budgeting, maybe consider those things. How might we need to change our annual campaign to better align with our organizational needs. So if you have any questions about that, maybe talk to a development person who actually does fundraising. 

But if you want to talk through, like, what does it mean for cash flow management, I'm your gal. So you can send me a message on LinkedIn. You can also message me on Instagram, but I will say that a comment will be much better than a message. So I am excited for the fall.

You all have a good day. And until next time, I'm Chyla Graham, your Nonprofit Ace and this is my podcast. All right. Bye. Thanks for listening to another episode of The Nonprofit Ace Podcast. Until next time, bye.

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