Your California nonprofit likely had ad hoc fundraising during its infancy. As it established itself, you probably cycled through intense fundraising campaigns followed by slow periods of donations trickling in. As your nonprofit continues to expand with larger operations and more staff, supporters, and volunteers, you’ll face an ever increasing need to transition your fundraising process into something ongoing.
California nonprofit audit and tax services providers warn that It’s no small feat to transition from ad hoc to ongoing without a strategic plan that works when you’re not looking. Continue reading to learn how you can seamlessly make the transition, keeping your nonprofit afloat while you focus on other areas of import.
1. Create a solid committee of board members, key staffers, and major donors.
This committee’s responsibility is to oversee the implementation of the ongoing fundraising process and check in to make sure the gears are turning. In the beginning, they’ll review past sources of funding. They’ll examine the pros and cons of all fundraising methods you’ve used, even if the methods weren’t very successful. Every method is worth looking into, as somebody might have an idea of how to capitalize on what did work.
Next, the committee will brainstorm new fundraising methods and compare the old and new. After brainstorming, they’ll select the methods that are the most feasible and outline the roles each committee member will have in fundraising efforts. Someone will need to connect corporate supporters to the nonprofit, while another will connect individual supporters to the nonprofit. Others can focus on organizing pledges and documenting receipts.
2. Create a budget for operating expenses and staff costs.
Once the committee has finalized a plan for ongoing fundraising, they can create a budget. With an approved budget, all that’s left is to create an action plan and assign tasks to committee members.
With the plan in motion, the committee will regularly evaluate it and adapt it to unexpected changes and situations. Give the new fundraising initiatives time to succeed, but don’t shy away from cutting losses if it isn’t working. You might need to try a few approaches to find the right ones.
3. Start fundraising campaigns before your funds are nearly dry.
Your fundraising campaigns should be ongoing and overlap each other, preventing gaps of slowed or missing funds. With enough work, your California nonprofit will have a steady supply of donors and funds, and you won’t have to stress about emergency interventions.