What’s In My Mailbox | The Post-it Note…Revisited

November 20, 2019

Many moons ago, I wrote a blog post about the possibilities of the humble Post-It note. Also known as Post-its and sticky notes, chances are, you’ve seen this small piece of paper with an adhesive strip on the back many a time. Created especially for attaching notes to documents and other surfaces, their little adhesive […]

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What’s In My Inbox | Oxfam’s matching gift campaign for World Toilet Day is serious business

November 20, 2019

Happy World Toilet Day! November 19th marks this little known holiday, which is an official United Nations international observance day. On its face, the idea of World Toilet Day sounds strange. Why are toilets worth celebrating? Well, you might not think of toilets as serious business, but they are. Especially to those who live in […]

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Fundraising Friday | November 15, 2019

November 15, 2019

The Agitator’s Nick Ellinger has a new book out! Read my review to learn why it should be on every fundraiser’s bookshelf. “Nearly 59 percent of nonprofits said live events are critical for attracting new donors, but just 18 percent of donors said they’ve learned about a charity through a live event.” Guess what? Nonprofit Communications Don’t Resonate With […]

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What’s In My Inbox | Intervale’s warm-up email keeps gratitude front and center

November 13, 2019

Pre-suasion is a method of priming an audience to receive your message more openly. It’s a powerful tool, and one that must be used in an ethical and just manner. -Robert Cialdini Brady Josephson, Vice President of Innovation & Optimization at nonprofit digital fundraising resource NextAfter, notes that communicating with your donors prior to an […]

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I put out a Twitter call for best thank you video. This one is gratitude gold.

November 6, 2019

Recently I put out a Twitter call, asking followers to pass on the best thank you video they’ve ever seen. Emma Jenkin, Marketing & Communications Coordinator at University of Toronto Schools, was one of the people who reached out, and I’m glad that she did. The video she sent clocks in at just over one […]

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13 Ways to Write Better Fundraising Asks

November 6, 2019

No one sets out to write crap. But when you’re only six weeks into your new fundraising job and your boss suddenly assigns you the task of writing your organization’s year-end fundraising appeal, due tomorrow, what the heck are you going do? Instead of copying and pasting last year’s letter, how about you carve out […]

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Want to fundraise big? Then Nick Ellinger’s book is what you need during these tough times…

October 31, 2019

Like Roger Craver says in his foreword, The New Nonprofit by Nick Ellinger “could scarcely be more timely.” You probably already know this, but it bears repeating: as time goes on, fundraising is not going to get any easier. If we want to face this reality head-on, then we need to figure out new ways […]

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Is your EOY Strategy Ready? Download Your Free End-of-Year Fundraising Checklist Now!

October 30, 2019

The year-end fundraising season is upon us! And, while our students and clients started on their year-end campaigns in August and September, there’s still time for you to rock EOY! According to NEON CRM: 12% of all giving happens in the last three days of the year Nearly one-third of all annual giving occurs in […]

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Fundraising Friday | October 25, 2019

October 25, 2019

Fundraising & Communications We all know this simple truth: it takes money to make money. Yet getting your board to invest in fundraising and donor care can be next to impossible. Here’s how to make your case — for your budget. With the retention rate for monthly donors running at 90% and up, establishing your […]

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Lessons from Motivate Monday | How easy are you making it for your donors to give?

October 16, 2019

Did you know that 83% of people who land on your main donation page won’t end up making a donation? Luckily, with a few surprisingly simple tweaks, you can turn this sad number around. Does your online donation form make it easy for your donors to give? During a Motivate Monday session late last month, Abby Jarvis, […]

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What’s In My Mailbox | How are you upgrading your monthly donors?

October 16, 2019

With retention rate for monthly donors running at 90% and up, establishing a solid monthly giving program makes sense. But many organizations take a set-it-and-forget-it approach. For monthly giving to work, you still need to communicate consistently, continue to ask, and upgrade. I recently received a mailing from Southern Poverty Law Center, and it is […]

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You won’t survive without a compelling case…but how are you making your case for funding to your board?

October 15, 2019

I was as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.  Eight weeks into my first job as a development director, I was about to present before my organization’s board on our annual campaign. For the past five years, their appeal had gone downhill, losing dollars and donors. The mailings had been […]

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What’s In My Inbox | CFES’s sticker campaign to win mailing addresses

October 2, 2019

Every American citizen over the age of 18 deserves the right to vote. In this day and age, voting is often viewed as a civic duty rooted in personal responsibility. To vote is to participate in the political processes that shape our lives. To vote is to use our voices. But because of voter suppression […]

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Power of Storytelling | World Vision’s new child sponsorship program is so perfect for right now

October 2, 2019

World Vision is a global humanitarian organization founded in 1950. Through their wonderful work, they show love to the poor and oppressed and serve every child they can. World Vision is engaged in the sustainable development of poor communities. They provide emergency relief in times of conflict and disaster. They raise public awareness that leads […]

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Fundraising Friday | September 27, 2019

September 27, 2019

Is today’s fundraising climate more complex than ever? Are trends like challenge proliferation, generational change, culture wars, tax law changes and more giving us more than we can handle? In Lessons from Motivate Monday, “fundraising heretic” Mark Rovner of Sea Change Strategies joins us to show how leaders can develop the skills to thrive in an increasingly complex environment. You’ll want […]

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Lessons from Motivate Monday | What is Complexity and Why Should I Care?

September 26, 2019

Is today’s fundraising climate more overwhelming than ever? Could it be that it’s also always been more unpredictable than we’ve imagined and that the very nature of fundraising makes this so? In this Motivate Monday session, “fundraising heretic” Mark Rovner of Sea Change Strategies joins us with his presentation, “What is Complexity and Why Should I […]

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What’s In My Inbox | How to work your monthly giving program with an email campaign

September 25, 2019

Monthly giving is especially great for small nonprofit organizations. It provides reliable, recurring income, and monthly donors have upwards of 90% retention rates. But let’s get a few things straight. Monthly giving is not a simple “if you build it, they will come” option. And it’s so much more than a tick box on your […]

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What’s In My Mailbox | Can a card mailing exceed fundraising goals?

September 25, 2019

Can a simple card mailing exceed targets? Yes, when it’s part of a thoughtfully integrated campaign and includes a personal touch! And a Mother’s Day appeal that Intervale Center sent out earlier this year is a terrific example of this. Mandy Fischer (she/her/hers), Development and Special Projects Director at Intervale, had this to say about […]

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Sandy Hook Promise reveals a back-to-school take that’s nothing short of terrifying

September 19, 2019

The video, called “Back-To-School Essentials,” begins like a thousand other back-to-school commercials. It could be an advertisement for Kohl’s or Target or even Wal-mart. One by one, three kids excitedly show off their brand new school items. The perfect backpack. Colorful binders. Headphones perfect for studying. But around the 12-second mark, you notice that something […]

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Encouraging Electronic Funds Transfer for your monthly giving program: make it easy for your donor

September 18, 2019

When it comes to nonprofit fundraising, monthly giving packs a lot of power. Even for the smallest organizations, a monthly giving program makes sense. You should be not only discussing it, but doing it, and if you’re not yet doing it, you need to go forth and figure out how to make monthly giving happen at […]

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