Month: August 2011

  • Fundraising mistakes and how to avoid them

    Over on SOFII there’s a great new tutorial from Jerry Huntsinger called Mistakes that Brenda doesn’t need to make. These are real-life mistakes that a lot of fundraisers make. I want to point out just a few of the more common and costly mistakes I see made all the time: Believing that your donors are…

  • How to be a boring pest on social media

    My bank wants me to “like” them on Facebook. I’d rather eat a bug. I have no problem with my bank. They do a fine job with my money. The tellers are friendly and professional. But I don’t want to see their inane, boring updates about yet another way to charge me interest. To me,…

  • Donors make their predictions come true

    The Neuromarketing blog reports on some research that shows how getting people to predict their own behavior makes them more likely to do what they said they’d do, at Prediction Power: Asking Gets Results: Research shows that if you want to get people to do something, you should ask them to predict if they will…

  • Subject line secrets for fundraising

    Here’s some interesting research on subject lines from Eloqua’s Chart of the Week. In this study: Using a recipient’s name in the subject line improves open rate of email. Using a recipient’s company name slightly decreases open rate. Using other personalized information in the subject line improves it by nearly 10%. An exclamation mark hurts,…

  • How not to muck up your fundraising

    Ageless Marketing reveals why so much advertising fails so dismally to reach the huge and lucrative older market, at Why Seniors Don’t Buy Your Ads. Short answer: Ads are usually aimed at younger people, even when they are meant to be aimed at older people. Because many young and naïve ad creators don’t understand that…

  • The curse of the journalism degree

    If you’re looking for a good fundraising writer, you might want to talk to folks with journalism degrees. They know how to gather information, write clearly, and meet deadlines. On the other hand, one of the worst qualifications you can seek for a fundraising writer is a journalism degree. Here’s why: A principle of journalism…

  • Don’t make your copy hard to read even if your donors are educated

    I heard a horrible rumor. I heard there are writers out there who work hard to increase the grade level of their writing. Seems some writers think grade level means education level. They believe if they’re writing for an audience that’s college-educated, the copy will be inappropriate, even insulting, if it’s not at least at…

  • When beautiful design is ugly fundraising

    Beauty is better than ugliness. But sometimes beauty can be your worst enemy in fundraising — when it gets in the way of your real goals. That’s the useful message in a recent post at BeaconfireWire, Wasted Pretty: Create design that matters: Making something beautiful is the easy part. Communicating a visual message that moves…

  • Why most nonprofit storytelling drives away donations

    There’s a very important point about nonprofit storytelling at The Far Edge of Promise: Why Better Storytelling Won’t Lead to Larger Gifts. How many of us have said, We need to tell people our story? And how often have we meant by that, If we could put our facts and beliefs into other people’s heads,…