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8 Fundraising Strategies By Christa Huff and Amy Sewall

Fundraising Strategies in an Election Year

As we look at the year ahead, one question that is asked repeatedly is, “How will the upcoming election affect my fundraising strategies?”

Although we can’t predict the future, we have been through a few election cycles in the past, and what we can say is that with strategic planning and creativity, non-political organizations can still see success in their fundraising efforts.

Here are a few tactics that have helped our clients experience better results during previous election years:

Emphasize Your Impact

Communicating the impact of your organization’s work is always vital, but this is particularly true during a fundraising year. Highlighting success stories, testimonials, and concrete examples of how donations make a difference can reinforce why potential donors should give now.

Diversify Your Fundraising Channels

Competition for donors’ attention and fundraising regulations can change during an election year, creating unexpected hurdles in specific communication channels. Diversifying your fundraising channels and platforms is necessary to capture the attention you need from active and potential donors. It can also help you adjust and pivot quickly when needed, ensuring you connect with donors wherever they are and offer them an opportunity to give.

Evoke Emotion Through Storytelling

As you develop engaging and compelling fundraising campaigns, use storytelling techniques to connect the individual donor with your organization’s recipient in a way that evokes emotions and leads to deeper and more meaningful engagement. Consider messaging that aligns with current events or trends to capture attention and play off current media coverage when possible.

Utilize Social Media Effectively

Social media use has the potential to help increase visibility in a political year. Pay attention to social platform changes by watching for notifications from the platform, and plan to test new post times and types throughout the year. As competition for donors’ attention increases, you may find using different types of posts or times of day helps you stand out in newsfeeds. And it won’t hurt to encourage your supporters to share your posts to widen your reach.

Segment Your Donors

Segment your donor base and tailor your communication strategies accordingly. Consider creating personalized messages based on donors’ interests, previous giving history, and demographics. This can make your outreach more relevant and impactful.

Timing is Key

Be mindful of the timing of your fundraising campaigns. Avoid launching major campaigns during peak election-related periods when people might be overwhelmed with requests for political contributions. Some peak periods often fall right before voting days or the day’s debates are scheduled in your area periods.

Express Gratitude

Thank your donors and show appreciation regularly and through multiple channels. Acknowledge their contributions, update them on your campaign’s progress, and demonstrate transparency in how their funds are utilized—show them the impact they have had. Building strong relationships can lead to repeat donations and increased loyalty.

Adapt and Innovate

Stay flexible and be willing to adapt your strategies based on feedback and results. Monitor the performance of your campaigns and adjust your approach as needed to ensure effectiveness.

Election years can present challenges—but that doesn’t mean your organization has to see a decline in revenue. Creatively using the strategies above and consistently keeping your needs in front of your donors throughout the year will help ensure continued growth. After all, your donors still have a heart for your mission—seeing you as a big part of what is right with the world—and a politically charged year can highlight the need for the good work they are a part of when they financially partner with you.

Remember, you are not alone in this journey. By staying true to your mission, maintaining strong donor relationships, and adapting to changing circumstances, you can lead your organization through chaos and toward a brighter future.


Christa Huff is Douglas Shaw and Associates’ Senior Vice President of Client Services. She is passionate about helping organizations grow to have the maximum impact and fulfill their mission. Her background in business growth and development, marketing, communications, and fundraising has made her an integral part of our team.

Amy Sewell is Douglas Shaw and Associates’ Senior Vice President of Digital Services. She leads our full-service digital team and drives all strategy, data, and development for digital projects. She consistently meets client goals and starts by listening to their unique needs.

Check out May’s Leader2Leader Podcast: Character Matters featuring Eric Geiger.


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Christian Leadership Alliance equips and unites leaders to transform the world for Christ. We are the leaders of Christ-centered organizations who are dedicated to faithful stewardship for greater kingdom impact.

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