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In addition to Individual Projects, you will be working in groups to develop skills used by organizations to support their activities. To learn about organizing and implementing a development campaign, your assignment is to develop a plan for TCD Program to implement leading up to, including, and following Giving Day 2021 for the TCD Program.

This assignment is designed to help you:

  1. Practice skills used in direct marketing to donors, including donor segmentation, prospect identification and data collection, planning a campaign, designing campaign materials, providing detailed timeline and activities for implementing the campaign, tracking campaign performance, and thanking campaign contributors and volunteers
  2. Learn about the strengths and weaknesses of direct marketing relative to other forms of fundraising
  3. Learn to work collaboratively on program development and presentation

Assignment & Grading: Your assignment is to develop a plan to raise funds for the UF Tropical Conservation and Development Program on Giving Day 2021. Your final plan will include (1) a written campaign plan and the components described below. and (2) an in-class presentation of the proposal and materials. The assignment is worth 1300 points and is made up of the following components:

  1. A written plan for the campaign that includes
    1. A situation analysis of TCD
    2. Segmented profiles of TCD’s prospective donors (at least 4 segments). If available, include data on the number of actual donors to date in different segments and prior donation history to TCD.
    3. The Campaign’s SMART objectives: the goal amount to be raised and for what use and based on the information from Items a & b.
    4. The strategies and tactics to achieve these objectives, including the type of pre-campaign appeals (e.g., online, mail, social media) for different donor segments, a calendar with milestones (preparing, marketing) for the Giving Day 2021 campaign, a plan for following-up with individual donors, etc.
    5. The campaign’s personnel budget: necessary personnel (staff, volunteers, etc.), their expected time requirements, and any financial investment required (software, equipment, etc. not already available).
    6. The metrics for evaluating campaign success
  2. Campaign Materials (see for ideas including toolkits but be creative and tailor for your specific charge
    1. Examples of social media posts and graphics, as well as email, web or print materials for marketing to each market segment that will be used at different stages of the Giving Day campaign (pre/during/post).
    2. A mechanism for thanking and encouraging donors from each segment at different moments of the campaign

DUE March 30th

  • Draft of Items a-c of the Campaign Plan (100 points).

DUE April 6th

  • Draft of Items d-f of the Campaign Plan (100 points).

DUE April 13th

  • Draft Campaign Materials (300 points).


  • Final Campaign Plan, including revised materials (500 Points).
  • Presentation of your fundraising campaign plan (15-20 min) (200 points).


  • A brief essay reflecting (~500-700 words) on what was beneficial as well as challenging about completing this project, including the dynamics of working as a team. Please include in this summary submit a brief evaluation of every team member’s contribution to the project (including your own). This evaluation will not be shared with team members (100 points).


Some things to keep in mind:


  • We strongly recommend you interview people on campus familiar with such campaigns for insights into these issues and what makes these campaigns successful. Potential sources include the UF Foundation, college-level development officers, chairs of departments with successful annual giving campaigns, etc.
  • Remember that there are several key components to an effective direct mail letter: a strong opening that will immediately interest the reader, a specific request (solicitation) for a gift, and a postscript (P.S.) that is a call to action, not just an afterthought.
  • Remember also that effective fundraising campaigns tell stories. Readers respond to the good that your nonprofit accomplishes. Tell the story.  Engage the reader. If it is not clear in the text of the letter, add an explanation of what type of letter it is (acquisition, renewal, or upgrade)
  • Be creative! Think beyond the email or envelope/letter, or use these tools in a different way
  • Think about TCD-specific ways to raise awareness of the campaign that will reach both on and off-campus audiences.
  • Keep in mind that the UF Foundation has three funds for the TCD program, and different donor segments may want to give to different funds.
  • The TCD Program uses Constant Contact for emailing newsletters. You may wish to consider tools such as A/B testing in advance of the campaign.