5 Tips for Your Nonprofit to Start the Year Strong

5 Tips for Your Nonprofit to Start the Year Strong

As we finally leap into 2021, this new year presents fresh opportunities for nonprofits. So how do you get started making this the best year yet for your organization? Here are 5 tips from our nonprofit fundraising experts at Convergent Nonprofit Solutions. 

Focus on Long-Term Financial Support

Relying on small, one-time donations often leave nonprofits facing a paradox of fundraising struggles:

  • When constantly investing time and money into fundraising, organizations often have less time to make headway on their mission and goals. 
  • Failing to reach goals can make organizations seem less credible and operate less effectively, which naturally leads to less fundraising and community engagement. 

So how do you break the cycle? This year, you can aim to target long-term, sustainable donations that give you more time to focus on your mission. Many nonprofits achieve this support with the help of a capital campaign.

Organize an Annual or Capital Campaign Effort

If you have big fundraising goals for 2021 or are still trying to transition away from events, you will need the most powerful fundraising methods on your side. An organized, campaign-based effort will help your nonprofit reach its funding goals now and down the road. Structured annual campaigns often start with a key leader study to ensure the support of your board and constituents. No longer just for brick-and-mortar, capital campaigns can prove to be cost-effective in fundraising for large-scale operational improvements, programmatic expansions, and more.

Focus on Communicating Your Outcomes

As we have demonstrated in the past, nonprofits earn the most fundraising dollars when they have the Asking Rights™. One of the most important steps towards developing your Asking Rights in 2021 involves communicating outcomes that potential investors will value. This helps build trust and credibility in your organization while appealing to large-scale donors. 

Feasibility First

When setting sights on a new fundraising possibility, many nonprofits are eager to jump right in and start raising money. While this eagerness is part of the passion for your mission, you will find more success in 2021 if you first assess the feasibility of your efforts. As mentioned, with an annual campaign effort, this can come in the form of a key leader study. For a capital campaign, your organization should undertake a feasibility study to test your funding goals, strategic plan, and body of work. A solid feasibility study will help you lay the groundwork for a successful capital campaign. And, as we have found in the past six months, now is the time to reach out to your investors and potential investors.

Take Advantage of Nonprofit Resources

The more groundwork you put in for your nonprofit, the easier it will be to make the right fundraising decisions. There are plenty of free and paid resources that you can use to support your growth in 2021, including:

  • Podcasts: Podcasts are free, fun, and easy ways to gain insight into the nonprofit sector during your commute, while you work, or in your downtime. 
  • Webinars: You can attend webinars online for in-depth insight into nonprofit topics that you can view on your own schedule. 
  • Books: No matter what your nonprofit goals are for 2021, there is a nonprofit resource book published by experts available to help you. 
  • Professional support: The greatest resource available to organizations are experts who know the ins and outs of nonprofit solutions. Convergent has a full suite of nonprofit services, as well as information on additional resources such as grants, whitepapers, and other service providers. 

Convergent Nonprofit Solutions

When you are ready to get the help you need to make 2021 your organization’s year, the professionals at Convergent are here for you. Contact our fundraising experts for help today!

About the author

Kristin Harper

Kristin has worked with national and local nonprofits in her path to Convergent. She works closely with our project directors and principals to provide strategic marketing and brand guidance.