Why You Shouldn’t Take It Personally When a Donor Says “No”

Fundraising feels very personal when you are asking someone for money. You spend a lot of time preparing a plan, getting the courage to put yourself in this strange position and making the call to get the appointment. Sometimes you have to call more than once. You know that during the face-to-face … [Read more...]

Learn How an NPR Donor Drive Will Increase Your Donor Retention

Over the past week, WBUR, one of the NPR stations in the Greater Boston area, has run a listener drive to increase sustaining members. Sustaining member is the term they give to a donor who offers to give a monthly donation instead of a once yearly gift. Those who work in and with nonprofits know … [Read more...]

The Fundraising Committee: Reflecting on a Year Part II

A few weeks ago I wrote Part I of what I experienced and learned when I looked back at my first year as the chair of a fundraising committee. Two themes surfaced through the year. The first was how to ask donors for gifts. As an organization, did we want a Direct “ask” or Soft “ask.” Click here to … [Read more...]

Successful Capital Campaigns Help With Donor Stewardship

Successful capital campaigns not only raise money…but also help with donor stewardship I had a call last week from the relatively new CEO of a nonprofit advocacy agency whom we placed in the position about 8 months ago. She called to discuss a problem she had encountered. She was having dinner … [Read more...]

The Fundraising Committee: Reflecting on a Year – Part I

This year, I started a series as the chair of the fundraising committee (click here to read the first few articles) of a small nonprofit.  Some months there were concepts that would not be appropriate for public consumption - even without names. And during other months I realized that not everything … [Read more...]

My Great Aunt’s Lesson: Charitable Gift Annuity for the Middle Class Donor

You may have noticed that I don’t write about planned giving very often. In part, that is because it is not our main business - we help clients create planned giving opportunities and aide in planned giving “asks,” but we have rarely, if ever, been engaged just to focus on planned giving. The other … [Read more...]

What I Learned About Fundraising Using Social Media This Week- Part 2

For those of you who read my articles each week, you will know that last week, in the Part 1 of this article, I talked about what I learned at a seminar on fundraising using social media. We did an exercise examining the age demographics of donors and what type of social media we thought they … [Read more...]

In Fundraising – How To Overcome The Initial Objections

I was standing by the front desk at a small local gym when two nicely dressed salesmen walked in. I eavesdropped on the following conversation: Salesman 1 offered a very brief - less than 20 second pitch on hydra something or other. Matt (the trainer and only employee around): I don’t want to … [Read more...]

Knowing Your Donors: Creating Marketing Personas for Your Nonprofit

The past week has been filled with talk about the Super Bowl - both the game and the commercials. This year, the large majority of the post-game ad talk was focused on the two commercials trying to gain awareness for causes. One was an insurance company that focused on a topic that scared the room … [Read more...]

Leveraging the Donor: The Fourth (and Final) Point in a Cycle of Life-Long Giving

A Four Stage Plan for the Annual Fund When I began this series I asked you, “In this coming year, what are you going to do to exceed your fundraising goals?” Well the year is up. How did you do? Did you write down your goals and objectives? Did you meet or exceed your expectations? In this … [Read more...]