Month: July 2022

  • 20 ways to make your donation page a lot more effective

    A lot of online donations don’t happen because donation pages get in the way of the donor’s intention to give. Here’s a super-helpful post that can keep that from happening to your donors, from the Bloomerang Blog, at 20 Best Practices to Optimize Your Nonprofit Donation Page: Choose the right online fundraising platform. Make sure…

  • Why would anyone keep reading these letters?

    I was digging through Uncle Maynard’s Treasure Trove of Direct Mail Knowledge, looking for a great story I could use as an example of effective storytelling. It was discouraging, because it took a long time to find what I was looking for. I eventually found an incredibly wonderful story, I’m glad to say. But I…

  • When your fundraising story is not story at all

    Read this excerpt from a direct mail appeal: This has the hallmarks of a story. There’s a protagonist (Mary). There’s conflict (her situation as a teen mother). There are lots of details. Yet it’s really not a story at all, at least not a fundraising story. What this story lacks is the main ingredient of…

  • How putting your opinions aside can help you raise a lot more money

    Does the logic of prompting people to give by sending them coins bother you? I understand. I don’t get it either. But here’s the thing: In many cases, it works. It works very well. That’s right: It’s stupid, annoying, and infuriatingly illogical … and it works. Sometimes. This is how you become a real fundraiser:…

  • What your donors want from you

    We know what we want from donors. It’s funding to power our organization and change the world. There’s no such thing as a free lunch. If you want the funding, you need to give something in return. But what? Here are some great thoughts from the Veritus Group Blog, at Four Things That All Donors…

  • Why your donors feel a connection — if they do

    The reason your donors donate may surprise you. It’s not necessarily the same reason you think it should be. It’s almost always for emotional reasons — not the iron-clad rational reasons you may be putting out there. Here’s a helpful look at this sometimes missed connection from Gail Perry’s Blog, at What is Your Donor’s…

  • 4 hallmarks of donor-focused communications [PODCAST]

    Do you ever wonder if your donor communications are truly donor-focused? Check what you’re saying against this list: Donors are the heroes of most of the stories you tell. Donors get prompt, detailed, and frequent information about the impact of their giving. Donors has control over how you communicate with them. Design is appropriate for…

  • Do you want partners or admirers?

    Here’s the opening line of a direct mail fundraising piece I just got: Thanks to the steadfast support of our donors and volunteers, the hard work of our staff, and the bravery of our clients, [Organization] is thriving. It goes on like that. Most of the letter is the story of someone the organization helped.…

  • Why donor-focused fundraising doesn’t work

    Almost everyone says donor-focused fundraising is a good thing. But look into what exactly donor-focused fundraising means, and one of your most common findings will be this: So-called donor focused-fundraising is fundraising with a style and approach that the fundraiser feels good about. Which isn’t donor-focused at all. In fact, it’s probably donor-ignoring. Possibly even…

  • The envelope has 2 sides — you can use both

    From commercial direct marketing, a lesson in envelope design. Here’s the front. Not too promising. They don’t even care who gets it, as long as they’re at this address. Yawn. I’m about to recycle it. But then I turn it over and see the back: Whoa! It suddenly got a lot more interesting! Who’d throw…