Posts Tagged "membership"

Three Short Takes to Get You Thinking This Fall

Posted by on Sep 12, 2017 in Communication, Featured, Foundations | Comments Off on Three Short Takes to Get You Thinking This Fall

Three Short Takes to Get You Thinking This Fall

Short Take #1 – Crafting newsletter headlines and email subject lines “On average, five times as many people read the headline as read the body copy.” – David Ogilvy   In a blog post from last February, Claire Axelrod listed five ideas for writing more effective headlines and email subject lines. I suggest you read the entire article, 5 Proven Content Strategies to Convert More Nonprofit Customers to Donors, but here’s the gist: Testimonial – use a direct quote from a donor or a landowner to draw the reader into the article or email. “I just couldn’t imagine condos there”...

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A Sweet Spot

Posted by on Sep 5, 2017 in Donor Cultivation, Featured, Membership | 1 comment

A Sweet Spot

Quick Question: How would you go about doubling your operating revenue in the next five years or so? In a recent Learning Center thread, a writer asked for information about membership numbers and growth rates. She explained that she was “not wanting to promise wildly inaccurate numbers and also want to know what type of growth rate for which to realistically aim.” Several people, including me, responded with experience and ideas – all of which were helpful for the question she asked. But was she asking the right question? I was reminded of the story of a person climbing a ladder. S/he was...

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The Hidden Fact That Will Change the Way You Write Appeal Letters

Posted by on Aug 15, 2017 in Communication, Featured, Membership | 3 comments

The Hidden Fact That Will Change the Way You Write Appeal Letters

If you’re smart, you won’t wait until November to write your end-of-year appeal. If you’re really smart, you will have already written it. OK so most of us aren’t that smart. But the fact still remains that it’s not too early to get a good start on it for 2017.     It’s fall! Time to give. So, here’s my general advice for approaching the task of getting to that first draft of the appeal letter: Start with a story. Return to the story at several points in the letter. List your board members down the left-hand side of the first page. Use 1.25” margins, 13pt type, and double space...

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Don’t Overdo Renewal Letters

Posted by on Aug 8, 2017 in Featured, Membership | 3 comments

Don’t Overdo Renewal Letters

Many land trusts renew their members in the Fall and many are now scrambling to produce renewal letters. Some I’ve seen, and they lead me to make the following recommendation to everyone: Don’t overdo it! Renewal letters need to do three things: They need to remind me of WHY I’m a member. They need to remind me of what I gave last year. And they need to suggest an increased level of support this year. And they need to do all that in an emotional – not data-driven – way. The most common way to overdo it is to try and resell the donor on the merits of the organization. I still see a lot of...

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Do You Have Enough Prospects? – A Fresh Take on Gift Charts

Posted by on Jul 11, 2017 in Featured, Membership, Plans and Budgets | Comments Off on Do You Have Enough Prospects? – A Fresh Take on Gift Charts

Do You Have Enough Prospects? – A Fresh Take on Gift Charts

Or – How will we ever raise $100,000 this year?!? If you can make a goal tangible, it will help you imagine it being real, and if you can make it real, you can make it possible. (And frankly, if it’s not possible, you’re better off finding that out early, right?) A gift chart can help. Here’s how. Most of us are familiar with the basics of a gift chart – a list of gifts needed to make a specific goal with higher-level gifts listed first and smaller gifts listed below in descending tiers, sometimes called a donor pyramid. Gift charts are commonly used in capital campaigns – and rarely used...

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