New Year’s Resolution: Set Fundraising Goals


The New Year provides an opportunity to reflect on last year’s fundraising efforts and how to make this upcoming year’s fundraising even better than the last. The economy is starting to turn around and giving to charities is on the rise. So, use this New Year to set your fundraising goals.

1. Set a Goal.

Determine your overall fundraising goals:

  • Total dollar amount to raise – $250,000
  • New donors acquired – 50
  • Increase from current donor giving – 20%

To determine your goals, examine your goals from last year (if you made them) and/or the actual amounts fundraised in order to determine this year’s goals.


2. Break It Down.

Break out your total goal into categories:

  • Major Donor Solicitations – $100,000
  • Special Events – $75,000
  • Direct Mail – $30,000
  • Home Parties – $15,000


3. Develop Strategy to Reach Your Goal.

Under each category, develop specific fundraising strategy to meet your goal:

  • Major Donors:
    • New donors: Purchase a mailing house list. Ask current donors to host a home party and invite their friends and neighbors – potential new donors – to hear about the great work you are doing.
    • Current donors: Get to know your current donors and their reason for giving. Offer them opportunities to increase their giving that will make an even bigger impact for the people, animals or populations they serve.
  • Special Events: Identify new sponsors. Develop strategy to upgrade current sponsors with new benefits and perks. Engage the board to commit to sell 10 tickets each.
  • Direct mail: Find a donor to offer a challenge match. Develop an appeal for year-end and mid-year.
  • Home Parties: Identify current donors who could host a home party by opening their home to their friends and colleagues who would have an interest in your organization and the capacity to give.

Check out a template with past year’s goals and actuals, this year’s goal and strategies to reach the goals: Setting Fundraising Goal TemplateSetting Fundraising Goals Template abbreviated


4. Track Progress Towards the Goal.

I have a client that uses one of the best – and most simple – tracking systems towards their fundraising goal. I’ve recreated it in a simple format that you can use: Fundraising Dashboard Template




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