Posts Tagged "Fundraising Staff"

Got Story?

Posted by on Jul 5, 2017 in Featured, Staff Development | 2 comments

Got Story?

One of the problems with field trips is that groups of people make too much noise. “Shhhhh,” the Naturalist said for the third time. “Listen.” For the life of me, all I heard was the wind in the leaves, and the people behind me clomp-clomping on the boardwalk. Wait – back up. Wrong time of year and wrong type of leaves. What was making that sound? Slowly, various members of the group looked down, below the boardwalk, and they showed everyone else where to look. The ground was moving in a way that nearly gave me vertigo. Fiddler crabs. Hundreds of them – maybe thousands. Scuttling sideways,...

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Untying the Budget Knots

Posted by on Apr 25, 2017 in Featured, Plans and Budgets, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Untying the Budget Knots

Untying the Budget Knots

I am working with an organization right now that needs to reboot their fundraising systems. They sent out their fall appeal last year and their renewal notices this year using email. It was a well-meaning but misguided attempt to save money – because their fundraising hasn’t been all that good lately. They didn’t even send renewal notices to everyone on their list because they didn’t have email addresses for everyone. I suggested that they mail a sequence of renewal letters, using paper and envelopes and stamps. Their initial answer was that there wasn’t money in the budget for stamps. I’ve...

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Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

Posted by on Feb 14, 2017 in Development Audit, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Plans and Budgets, Staff Development, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten. Why are we doing this event? Because we did it last year. Why do we send out an appeal letter in October? Because that’s what we’ve always done. Why are our $250 donors called “Patrons”? Why do we host an annual golf tournament? Why do we write notes on renewal letters? Someone wise once told me that every once in a while, instead of trying to climb faster or smarter or more efficiently, it’s important to step back and make sure your ladder is still leaning on the right wall. I’ve written about this...

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Stop Shooting Yourself in the Foot: Three Common Practices that Undermine Fundraising

Posted by on Feb 7, 2017 in Communication, Development Audit, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Membership, Plans and Budgets, Uncategorized | 1 comment

Stop Shooting Yourself in the Foot: Three Common Practices that Undermine Fundraising

This weeks’ post is about shooting yourself in the foot. And in each case, the cause is related to an overreaction to a complaint. Worse, sometimes the person complaining is someone internal to the organization and who therefore should know better.   Life Memberships (and other forms of “discount” memberships) When I first started working for The Nature Conservancy, the organization offered Life Membership to people who contributed $1,000 or more. The logic was that membership came with a minimum gift of $15 and $1,000 therefore represented nearly 70 years’ worth. That same logic...

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Knowing When to Cut Bait

Posted by on Jan 31, 2017 in Communication, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Uncategorized | 1 comment

Knowing When to Cut Bait

We talk sometimes in solicitation training about “No” not necessarily meaning “Not Ever.” It might mean not now. It might mean I don’t have enough information, or I don’t yet have the level of trust I would need to have to make that kind of giving decision. It might even mean I like the organization but not that particular project. But sometimes, deferral and procrastination can signal that the donor is really saying No, also. One day, in the middle of our capital campaign, it was time to talk with one of our wealthiest prospects. Net worth and income off the charts, this man had made $5,000...

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