Fundraising secrets of the cool kids

Here’s a good analysis at SOFII by James Read: Lessons from young charities.

It’s a look at some interesting new organizations that are doing well in the marketplace, including Charity: Water, Invisible Children, Falling Whistles, and Love 146.

Here’s what James found these organizations have done well:


  1. Focus on a powerful idea
  2. Recruit passionate advocates, not merely donors
  3. Be a storyteller
  4. Prove your impact

Of course, you don’t have to be a hip new org to do these things. You can even do all of these things in direct mail, if that’s where most of your fundraising is happening. Even if you’re an old-line charity with old-line donors, these are smart things to do that will improve your fundraising.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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