Campaigns are extraordinary.
Campaigns are not done in isolation, rather, they are managed in conjunction with all the other activities of your organization — programs and services, education, finance, marketing and communications, human resources, and, of course, fundraising.
The fundraising team has to continue to send annual fund letters, write grants, and plan the gala all while strategizing on how to raise a tremendous amount of money to reach the campaign goal.
We encourage our clients to hire a campaign coordinator to add capacity and support the campaign leadership in accomplishing all that needs to occur above and beyond day-to-day operations.
We also work on priority focus areas so that campaign leadership does not become overwhelmed. An implementation timeline is helpful in mapping out what happens when to create structure and build anticipation. But a good plan also allows for responsiveness, because one thing in campaigns is certain — there will be surprises.
When building a campaign plan, there are three phases:
- Planning Phase – understanding campaign readiness
- Quiet Phase – securing lead gifts
- Public Phase – reaching the goal and celebrating success
The timeline for each phase will vary, and we promise you, it will change. There are multiple external factors at play, often out of the organization’s control, that inevitably create change. However, without a plan, those changes can derail the effort and demoralize the team.
Putting a structure in place to guide the work will give your organization a strong foundation for success with both the campaign goal and sustained fundraising over time. After all, campaigns don’t happen in isolation.
Article by: Kerri Laubenthal Mollard, Founder & CEO