Thanks to Jen @

It’s DECEMBER:  the month for merry-making and trying your hardest to get work done in the midst of it all.  It’s also the month for fundraising, particularly during that last week between Christmas and New Years.  A very interesting factoid:  22% of all annual charitable giving comes on December 30th and 31st (from Network for Good).

Here are some tips for December giving that we’ve learned over the past 3 years (all of these items HAVE contributed to ArtSpark’s own fundraising success):

  • Use an e-newsletter service!  This not only adds a professional shine to your emails, but also provides mailing list management (including those important “unsubscribes”), fantastic analytics, and stringent spam requirements.  ArtSpark likes MailChimp and Vertical Response because they’re easy to use, friendly and you can pay as you go (very nice for individual artists and small arts organizations).
  • Include inspirational language and images (but no video) in your e-newsletter – capitalize on passion!
  • Use the word “contribute” in your e-newsletter subject line (also make that subject line short and sweet and go easy on punctuation).
  • NO MORE THAN 300 WORDS!  Make sure your e-newsletter is well-written with no typos – also make sure all the links work, including donate buttons and links to sites like PayPal.
  • ALWAYS send out a “test” of your e-newsletter to 2-3 people with good eyes and writing skills before you send it out to your whole list.
  • Consider segmenting your email list and sending more specific e-newsletters to different groups – e.g., friends, family, colleagues, etc.
  • ASK, ASK AND ASK!  Send short, but different, emails out 2-3 times in the week after Christmas, including the 30th or 31st of December.
  • Don’t forget the power of face-to-face conversations and “snail mail” with your best donors or donor prospects.  Personal touch and communication makes all the difference.
  • Leverage online social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, Google +, etc. to get the word out.
  • Make sure your mailing address and phone number is on your website homepage and your “About Us” page.

So, in the spirit of the season, HO HO HO! to all and have fun during this season of giving cheer!