Strong annual giving is the foundation for successful fundraising, including major, planned, and corporate giving. Since restricted and unrestricted annual fund gifts are critical in funding operations, it is important for nonprofits to define donor impact, analyze historical data, and implement strategic solicitation and stewardship initiatives.
The mainstay of most organizations’ annual giving program is an Annual Fund, which is the money raised from an (ongoing) annual giving campaign. Annual fund revenue is a pivotal part of an organization’s financial and business model and reflects the support and contributions of loyal donors, members, and constituents. Annual Funds most often support operational costs and help bolster the annual budget. Successful annual fund campaigns are run throughout the year, involve multi-channel, intentionally repetitive outreach strategies, and leverage a targeted donor segmentation and outreach plan.
Annual giving not only fuels a steady support stream for specific programs and/or the organization in general, but also provides a critically important mechanism and opportunity by which an organization can discover, recognize, leverage, and thank existing donors—with the goal of inspiring new donors, stewarding existing donors, and re-engaging lapsed donors.