Having a goal for Giving Tuesday is highly correlated with success

Because…successful GivingTuesday campaigns have a goal! Our research shows that organizations that set a goal are far more likely to succeed. Without this your campaign may lack focus and direction. Goal setting not only allows you to take control of your campaign’s direction; it also provides you a benchmark for determining whether you are actually succeeding.

Goal setting is a process that starts with careful consideration of what you want to achieve, and ends with the hard work to actually do it. In between, there are important steps that transcend the specifics of each goal. Make sure your team is part of this process so that you can all focus on making it happen.

1. Goals that motivate: This means making sure that they are important to you, that there is value in achieving them and they are on mission. If the outcome is not interesting, or they are not relevant to your mission, then the chances of you putting in the work to make them happen are slim. Make sure your goals are ambitious enough that they will be a stretch and will be really exciting to achieve. Motivation is key to achieving goals. Remember, for GivingTuesday your goals don’t have to be all about fundraising: you can also consider goals related to awareness, volunteer engagement, donor recognition etc.

2. Goals that are SMART: You’ve probably already heard of SMART goals. The simple fact is that for goals to be powerful, they should be:

  • Specific – Your goals should be clear and well defined. Vague or generalized goals are unhelpful because they don’t provide sufficient direction.
  • Measurable – Include precise amounts, dates, and so on in your goals so you can measure your degree of success. When the GuelphGives movement first started their goal was very simple: ONE CITY-ONEDAY-ONE MILLION $
  • Attainable – Make sure that it’s possible to achieve the goals. The trick is to strike the right balance between something that is motivating and also manageable.
  • Realistic – Goals should be realistic and relevant to your organization’s direction. By keeping goals aligned with your mission, you’ll have the focus you need to achieve them.
  • Timely – Set a deadline. This helps create a sense of urgency and means that you know when you can celebrate success. For GivingTuesday this can be the end of the day, the week or even the end of the giving season.

3. Write them down The physical act of writing your goals makes them real and tangible. And your organization will have a clear record of what you’re trying to achieve. Check out these ambitious goals set by the QuebecGives team for this year:

QuebecGives Goals 2020

4. Make an action plan: This step is often missed in the process of goal setting. You get so focused on the outcome that you forget about the steps that are needed along the way. By writing out the individual steps, and then crossing each one off as you complete it, you’ll realize that you are making progress. Check out our campaign planner workbook for more on how to do this.

5. How did it go? Make sure to follow up after GivingTuesday to measure how you did. Did you achieve some or all of your goals? Why or why not? What did you learn? Is there anything you can do to improve your performance the next time you plan a campaign, whether for GivingTuesday or at another time of the year?

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