How will you be retaining your digital donors? It’s true: donor retention for new online donors is in the toilet. Learn how to keep more of your first time online donors by catching Steven Shattuck’s Motivate Monday session from this week. Featuring one attendee’s thank you email redo.

Are you still working on your year-end appeal? A great example from Interval Center just landed. This week’s What’s In My Mailbox.

How are you using video, Facebook, and *donor spotlights* to recognize and thank your donors? 5 Ways to Thank and Recognize Your Donors Using Digital Tools and Social Media. New from Julia Campbell.

We were truly saddened to learn, belatedly, that Aaron Bramley, who presented one of our finest membership trainings on how to create video on a budget, passed away in September. He was a smart, generous spirit. The Dos and Don’ts of Interacting With Cancer Patients.

Why are second gifts made? And how could you be capturing more? Why Are 2nd Gifts Made? New from The Agitator.

After You’re Gone, Who Will Know Your Donor’s Story? The importance of documentation. Critical. New from Veritus.

From the Archives

Does your organization embrace a culture of philanthropy? If you don’t have it, you’ll never truly achieve your goals. Here’s how to create your plan.


Learning Opportunities

Giving USA has reported that giving by foundations increased to nearly $59.28 billion in 2016. And over half of the nonprofits surveyed are reporting an increase in foundation funding. Are you getting your share? Join us for Foundation Grants | Basics & More™, where we guide you through prospect research, writing a grant proposal that will make your funder sit up and take notice, and how to build your foundation grants system. Learn more hereEnroll now.

John Haydon’s back for Motivate MondayNext Monday at 1:00 pm ESTSave your seat here (limited to first 100 registrants).

We’re adding classes to Basics & More U, including Nonprofit Storytelling. Have you checked it out?

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What’s In My Mailbox | Basics & More Alum has learned the lessons of #donorlove

November 15, 2017

I’m proud to say that Intervale Center is a Basics & More alum who has mastered the lessons behind #donorlove. #donorlove, hashtagged or not, is never a buzzword. #donorlove is the framework that provides the tools for nonprofits to empower their donors and create lasting relationships. #donorlove is dynamic and always in flux, because as fundraisers, […]

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What’s In My Inbox | How will you be retaining your digital donors?

November 14, 2017

Steven Shattuck’s Motivate Monday visit was worth the wait. Due to some technical difficulties, we rescheduled his original session for this past Monday.  Over the course of a half hour, Steven shared his useful tips for how to retain digital donors. The question of how to turn those first dates into committed donor relationships comes up […]

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Fundraising Friday | November 10, 2017

November 9, 2017

Selecting a donor database is one of the most critical decisions your nonprofit will face. Does it make sense to entrust it to a group of largely uninformed opinions in a Facebook group? I spent close to a year deliberating my own CRM selection. Do your organization a favor and read Andrea John-Smith’s guest post, […]

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What’s In My Mailbox | Are you forgetting that important last step?

November 8, 2017

  We agonize over our fundraising appeal letter, we gather our board members together to write sticky notes and hand-address envelopes, and we segment our mailings with the greatest care. But are we forgetting the last step? In our October 30 Motivate Monday session, the Direct Mail Man himself, Blase Ciabaton, joined us to answer your […]

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What’s In My Inbox | NARAL offers a space for donors to share their stories

November 7, 2017

When I was 22 years old, I was introduced to my lifelong love, running. The woman who introduced me to running was a coworker and friend by the name of Tomi (short for Thomasina). When we met, she was a 40-something single mom of four fabulous grown kids. One night, after one of our runs, Tomi […]

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The Pitfalls of Choosing Your Organization’s CRM

November 6, 2017

If there’s one question that comes up repeatedly in various nonprofit Facebook groups and listservs, it’s the database question. Selecting your organization’s CRM is one of the most important decisions your organization will make. Yet far too many nonprofits give more thought to the color of their gala invitation than they do selecting the system […]

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Fundraising Friday | November 3, 2017

November 3, 2017

Blog Roll What happened when one Basics & More member revived print after her organization had gone all digital? Find out in this week’s What’s in my Mailbox. Is there an app to help with your storytelling? You better believe it. This week’s Power of Nonprofit Storytelling. US philanthropy is in trouble. Big trouble. You’ve simply GOT to get cracking and […]

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What’s In My Mailbox | “My board wants to cut print and go digital.”

November 1, 2017

I feel lucky to get a lot of emails that inspire me. Often times, the ones that do are usually notes from Grow Report subscribers, Basics & More students, members, and alumni, and Simple Development Systems members. And then there are times when an email makes my week. I’ll start off by introducing Laura Block, […]

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The Power of Storytelling | Let Grammarly gently guide your nonprofit storytelling

October 30, 2017

I was recently lost within the depths of the Internet. If you’re online often, going down virtual rabbit holes is probably nothing new for you. I don’t remember what I was watching, but I remember the commercials interspersed between the clip. Funny, huh? There’s reasons why the commercials were memorable, though. First off, both were […]

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Fundraising Friday | October 27, 2017

October 27, 2017

If you’ve ever been hired to grow individual giving — and yet been admonished repeatedly by leadership to “weed out the database” to maintain it’s *free* status of less than 500 records (I know. CRAZY, right?), you know that getting everyone on board is not easy. Does your fundraising culture SUCK? Help is on the […]

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Donors for Life: A practitioner’s guide to relationship fundraising

October 26, 2017

A conversation heard ‘round the fundraising world happened within the last few months. A fundraising leader ignited the talk by publishing an article on his blog. His post focused on the idea that donor-centricity is problematic, and that fundraisers ought to instead look toward community-based fundraising solutions. Almost immediately, I noticed a huge problem: the […]

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Does your fundraising culture SUCK? Help is on the way!

October 25, 2017

When it comes to lousy nonprofit culture, sometimes I think I’ve seen it all. Have you ever… Been hired to raise major gifts, but been restricted from attending board meetings? Been hired to grow individual giving — and yet been admonished repeatedly by leadership to “weed out the database” to maintain it’s *free* status of […]

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What’s In My Inbox | OXFAM’s 2017 donor survey is simple and effective

October 24, 2017

The importance of regularly surveying your donors is undeniable, yet often underestimated. I’ve talked about this a lot, and I’m likely to keep talking about it, because  What makes donor surveys so useful? They have the capacity to connect with your donors on a deeper level, can help frame your communications, potentially uncover major and planned […]

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Fundraising Friday | October 20, 2017

October 20, 2017

What steps can you (still) take to ensure that your year-end fundraising appeal gets delivered? You’ve Got (Undeliverable) Mail: Why Nonprofits Should Invest in Good Data. A timely guest post from our friends at Merkle RMG. Are you getting ready for Giving Tuesday? Sample emails (no option required). What’s in my Inbox. We all know […]

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You’ve Got (Undeliverable) Mail: Why Nonprofits Should Invest in Good Data

October 18, 2017

The Problem of Undeliverable Mail Undeliverable mail is a $20 billion annual industry-wide problem. Anywhere between 25 to 40 percent of address changes aren’t reported to the United States Postal Service (USPS), meaning that even when mail files are updated, there is still a portion of mail not reaching its intended donor. And for nonprofit […]

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Fundraising Friday | October 13, 2017

October 13, 2017

A powerful example of digital communications, including the email header (“One act. Double the impact.”, the opening hook, the social media integration, and the compelling opportunity to not only give but give bigger. This week’s What’s in my Inbox. Will you be attending the Nonprofit Storytelling Conference? This week’s Power of Nonprofit Storytelling. When subscriber […]

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What’s In My Mailbox | Green Mountain United Way anticipates their best fundraising fall — ever!

October 11, 2017

Carrie Stahl, Director of Funding & Program Development for Green Mountain United Way, recently wrote me to share this: Thanks to some great advice in your enews, and some samples on your website, I am personally having my best fundraising fall. We United Ways start early so as not to compete with our agency partners. […]

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What’s In My Inbox | Everytown galvanizes donors to give double for gun safety

October 10, 2017

I’ve covered communications from Everytown Gun Safety before. A merge between Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America shortly after Sandy Hook happened. The US Senate had been debating changes to federal gun laws, including a failed amendment that would’ve enforced background checks for gun sales occurring at gun shows […]

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Power of Storytelling | The Nonprofit Storytelling Conference is taking on America, one story at a time!

October 9, 2017

The Nonprofit Storytelling Conference is a conference unlike any other in the world. NSC’s goal is rooted in this idea: With better stories, you can raise more money. To that end, they invite fundraisers to partake in a potentially life-changing and fundraising-transforming experience. If you’re the least bit skeptical, check out their About page. And then check […]

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