This post originally appeared on Nonprofits First by Charlotte Gill.

The recent Great Give was a boon for The Guatemalan-Maya Center (a nonprofit member at Nonprofits First), which brought in nearly $40,000 during the one-day fundraising event

The organization worked with the marketing company Achieve (an affiliate member at Nonprofits First) in raising the money through social media, e-blasts, and a string of volunteers.

How did they do it?

We asked Erica Linguanti, Achieve’s Director of Marketing, to explain their strategies for the campaign – and describe how similar strategies can help other nonprofits in various fundraising efforts.

It’s our May Member spotlight.

1) How did Achieve help The Guatemalan-Maya Center raise $38,787 during the Great Give?

Mobile-Responsive-Donation-PageErica Linguanti: We developed a multi-channel campaign strategy to help The Guatemalan-Maya Center meet their goal of raising $30,000 to expand their after school program. Here are some of the key tactics we used to support our overall strategy:

  1. Identified a clear/realistic fundraising goal. In the case of The Guatemalan-Maya Center, instead of simply having a monetary goal, we equated the goal to the impact: “Help 30 kids succeed in school this year.”
  2. Updated their website to be mobile responsive and implemented a new donation platform for pre and post donations. It was important that their donation tool was both mobile friendly and trackable through Facebook conversion tracking.
  3. Developed an email messaging strategy to leverage storytelling before, during, and after the Great Give to encourage support.
  4. Utilized both paid and organic social media to generate awareness and garner donations. Paid social advertising was especially critical because it allowed us to leverage a variety of retargeting tactics to best reach our key audiences. To really succeed on social you can’t rely on a few organic posts anymore. On Facebook, typically only about 1-3% of your followers will ever organically see your content – and it usually takes at least 5-7 messaging “touch points” before a user will ever consider taking action. For better or worse, Facebook (and Instagram) have become very pay-to-play platforms making your organic social strategy only as effective as your paid social strategy (and vice versa).
  5. Created phone scripts volunteers could use to reach out to past donors and encourage participation in the Great Give. Sometimes accomplishing fundraising goals takes a village, so we wanted to setup volunteers for success!

2) Was there anything during the Great Give event that didn’t go as planned?

Erica Linguanti: Initially we were unable to secure a donor match – which was a key tactic in our overall strategy. After this setback, we pivoted to a new messaging strategy. Then, a little over one week before the Great Give, our plans changed again after a $5,000 donor match was secured. While we were thrilled to have a match to help incentivize donors, the last-minute match meant we needed to change our messaging strategy again. With any type of marketing campaign, it’s important to remain flexible!

3) What advice would you give other nonprofits about raising money during the Great Give or other events?

Giving Days Digital Marketing AdviceErica Linguanti: The biggest pieces of advice I would give to other nonprofits looking to raise money during the Great Give (or other pinnacle events) would be to:

  1. Start early! #GivingTuesday is shortly after Thanksgiving. Ideally, you should be planning your strategy no later than July/August.
  2. Keep your goal(s) simple and tangible. It also helps to humanize your ask by attaching money to actual impact. For example, with The Guatemalan-Maya Center, our goal was to “Help 30 kids succeed in school this year” vs. “Help us raise $30,000.”
  3. Leverage paid social media advertising to extend your digital reach and get in front of new audiences.
  4. Remember that for “day of giving” events – it’s not just about the amount of money raised. Giving days are great opportunities to bring in new donors for your organization that you can cultivate over time (and hopefully turn into loyal donors).

If your nonprofit has a great story to tell, contact Charlotte Gill at Nonprofits First: 561-910-3891 or [email protected].