Assessing Your Nonprofit’s Donors and Prospects: Annual Fund Segmentation Strategies

Solicitation strategies start with assessing the current situation. Do you treat all your prospects and donors the same? Should you? You should have a development plan for all prospects and a stewardship plan for all donors. But, you should not plan on having the executive director meet with … [Read more...]

What Motivates Donors to Give

I got an email from a client earlier today.  He wrote: I saw an article in the Washington Post yesterday. It discusses that, with the new tax law, many people will lose the deductibility of charitable contributions because they will become subject to the standard deduction. For individuals 70.5 and … [Read more...]

It’s Time for You to Evaluate Donor Retention For the Past Year

It’s early March, which means your end-of-year appeal numbers should be in your system. Now, it’s time to evaluate donor retention rates. In addition to focusing on how much you your end-of-year appeal raised for annual funds, it’s time to dig a bit deeper. Do you know the: Number of PYBUNTs … [Read more...]

How Do You Treat Former Board Members?

I have a pet peeve about this.  I do not understand why nonprofits do not treat former board members (FBM) as more than run-of-the-mill donors.  It seems to me that someone who has given their time and energy to your organization for 3, 6, or even 10 years is someone who should be cultivated more, … [Read more...]

5 Fundraising Lessons I Learned from Seeing Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg

Last week I was lucky enough to witness Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg have a one-on-one conversation with an old friend, Senior Circuit Judge Bruce M. Selya.  While the hour was filled with her soft-spoken inspiration, there was one moment at the very beginning that was meant to be a fundraising … [Read more...]

Prospect Research – Amazingly Informative or Just Too Creepy?

We offer prospect research screenings to our clients.  We think it is a good way to assess the potential of a nonprofit’s current donor base. But, when we describe the process to a committee, invariably, someone asks something like, “is prospect research to creepy for us to use?” I’m never quite … [Read more...]

The Annual Fund – Capital Campaign Correlation

Is there an annual fund – capital campaign correlation? In one word, yes. The annual fund does much more than supplement your budget. Your annual fund is a key indicator as to whether: Donors support your mission and vision (literally and figuratively) Your development program is donor … [Read more...]

Getting Ready for the New Year

On the first day of the New Year, I found a few things that gave me pause for thought as I clear the decks and begin getting ready for the New Year. At the end of the year, most organizations judge their success by one question: Did we meet our budget goal?But growing future giving means … [Read more...]

Do You Segment Your Annual Appeal Personalization? Why You Should.

Like most of you reading this post, I have started to receive year-end annual appeal letters.  Unlike most of you, I read them in detail. Among other things, I look if I am being asked for a specific amount or not. I notice whether they are asking me to increase my contribution from last year to … [Read more...]

The Impact of Religion on Philanthropy: The Highlights

Yesterday, The Giving Institute conducted a live webcast titled, “The Impact of Religion on Philanthropy.” Full disclosure, I don’t have a written report yet so this is relying on my memory. And, because I am used to receiving a copy of a webinar or their slides, I didn’t even take detailed notes. I … [Read more...]