Month: September 2012

  • It’s not your donors’ fault — stop scolding them

    Sometimes the way the world is just frustrates you. You want to grab every single person in the world by the lapels and say something adolescent like Wake up! A lot of fundraisers are like that. Unfortunately, some of them do their fundraising like that too, as noted at the Inspiring Generosity blog: The Failure…

  • 3 Far-out fundraising fails

    Fantasy Fundraising Somewhere there’s a vast cemetery of failed fundraising efforts, all of them beautiful fantasies that nonprofit organizations wanted to do. They believed they couldn’t go wrong. But donors didn’t respond. It always goes that way. When you use your own tastes and preferences as a guide, you miss what real donors respond to.…

  • How to triple your newsletter donations

    Here’s a happy story from Kivi’s Nonprofit Communications Blog: How Overhauling Our Print Newsletter Helped Us Become More Donor Centric. It’s about how an organization called Workers Interfaith Network overhauled their newsletter — and the dramatic improvements that happened. Here are some of the changes they made: Went from 8 pages to 4. Changed from…

  • What to work on before you work on your tagline

    The Flat Earth Direct blog says taglines suck. I wouldn’t go exactly that far. Even a bad tagline is unlikely to do a lot of damage. But here’s the way taglines suck: They can suck up time and energy: Don’t get fixated on encapsulating your next fundraising appeal or project on a few catchy words.…

  • Help me sell new book on fundraising

    I could use your help marketing my new book, The Fundraiser’s Guide to Irresistible Communications: Real-World, Field-Tested Strategies for Raising More Money. I’m looking for a marketing tagline: A succinct, powerful, persuasive sentence that will help people decide this book is something they need — that this book will help them meaningfully and immediately improve…

  • We-are-awesome fundraising

    From Marketoonist, 5 types of social media strategies: Look familiar? This lesson applies not only to social media, but all forms of marketing. You are going nowhere if the core of your message is We are awesome. You’ll raise serious funds if the core of your message is You are awesome.

  • The Fundraiser’s Guide to Irresistible Communications

    From time to time, someone asks me, What do I need to know to effectively raise funds? I generally stammer out something that I hope will be helpful — something like Make it all about your donors or Don’t forget to ask. Of course, one-sentence advice won’t take you very far. But being asked the…

  • I know something that’s more evil than fundraising segmentation

    Are rainbows evil? That’s pretty much the equivalent to the question asked at the Analytical Ones blog recently, Is segmentation evil? It’s about an organization that chose not to segment their donor file by giving behavior… In accordance with Scripture (James 2) they made the decision not to treat donors differently based upon their giving…

  • The power of boring fundraising to not raise funds

    Can you bore donors into giving? I think I found someone who tried in Uncle Maynard’s Treasure Trove of Direct Mail Knowledge. Hospice is not an easy sell for fundraising — believe me, I have inside knowledge on that. It’s not dramatic. Hospice is more like an anti-drama system that’s geared to make death quiet,…

  • How to be creative — the easy way

    If you ever have to solve problems or do creative work of any kind, here’s some help from Roy Williams’ MondayMorningMemo: 5 Ways to Solve Problems Creatively. Here’s what you do: First, fill your head with information about your project. Then stop analyzing. Stop thinking about the project. Do one of these things: The Arts.…