How to re-use last year’s fundraising this year

You may have already written and designed your 2020 year-end campaign.

Think how much time you’ll save nine or ten months from now?

When did you do it?

When you created your 2019 campaign. Or maybe some year before that.

If something works in your fundraising, you should repeat it. Don’t reinvent that particular wheel! You have too much on your to-do list anyway.

Re-using old material that worked not only saves time and money, it increases your chance of success. Because every time you create something new, you risk failure. That’s not meant to scare you — it’s just one of those facts of life. It’s not a reason to avoid doing new things — just the way new things usually are.

Here’s what A Direct Solution points out at How Older Ideas Can Be ‘New’ Again:

Coming up with new ideas is difficult. Especially if you’re strapped for time or if you work in a small shop and you wear many hats. Don’t worry too much about having to come up with new ideas all the time.

If you’re afraid re-using old stuff is going to hurt results, stop worrying. If it did well last year, it will likely do well again this year. (But it’s worth noting that if something did poorly last year, it will likely do poorly again this year. Don’t re-use your past failures!)

Will your donors respond negatively to your “laziness”?

I’ve never seen it happen. My guess: The large majority don’t notice. Of those who notice, none are bothered. Okay, there’s probably some persnickety donor out there who notices and is annoyed. But that’s not the norm! Not even close.

I’ve watched many organizations send out the same important appeals year after year for decades, and they keep on working. Sometimes, re-used pieces “wear out” over time; you know it’s happening because response drops. That’s when you know it’s time to create something new.

But give yourself a break when you can. Re-use your past successes.


Comments

2 responses to “How to re-use last year’s fundraising this year”

  1. Now to convince my ED and my board of this!

  2. Now to convince my ED and my board of this!

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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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