The World is Changing

Coronovirus Fundraising: Steal these Ideas!

Now more than ever you must, must, must invest in your fundraising efforts.

Rather than spending time worrying – panicking? – why not turn your mind towards positive things?  Like creative ways to invite others to help keep your mission afloat?

In my post earlier this week, I shared some ingenious ideas implemented by other nonprofits  — all so you can resourcefully borrow their ideas. I will keep sharing, because that’s how we learn. And… that’s what Clairification School is for, right? [If you’re not yet enrolled, there’s no better time than the present!]

It’s a blank slate now when it comes to fundraising. Yes, use tried-and-true principles of donor-centered fundraising. But don’t be tone deaf to the unprecedented times we are in.

Coronavirus is all folks are thinking about right now. Even while they try not to think about it.

Stay relevant, or prepare to be ignored.

You can help people!

Here’s the deal.

I’ve never in my lifetime heard so many people asking: “what can I do to be of service?” 

Charities have the opportunity to answer this question.

Living in a pandemic sucks, but you’d be remiss if you didn’t avail yourself of this opportunity to (1) keep your mission, and those who rely on you, afloat, and (2) help would-be helpers feel helpful!

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Fundraising Do's & Don'ts logo

Fundraising Don’ts vs. Do’s: Giving Tuesday Email +Donation Landing Page

Fundraising Do's & Don'ts logoIt’s not too late to use these tips to help with your year-end fundraising.

This new “Do’s vs. Don’ts” feature is popular, so I thought I’d share another one that seems like a good ‘teaching opportunity.’ It’s a twofer, as I’ll discuss both the appeal and the donation landing page to which it takes folks — should they be inspired to click through.

Please note: Sometimes I can’t omit the name of the charity in the examples I use. Please know I’m coming from a place of love, and don’t mean to shame anyone. As with almost anything you can think of, there’s good AND bad in the examples I share. We learn both from mistakes and stellar efforts. Our own, and others.  Kudos to all who put things out there and make an effort. The only way you learn is by trying. Believe me, I’ve sent out some real clunkers in my time as a development director! If I ever use you as an example, and you disagree or want to clarify, feel free to contact me directly.

Okay. Let’s move on.

We’re going to evaluate every element methodically.

I’ll ask you some questions.

  1. Would you open that email?
  2. If yes, why?
  3. If no, why?
  4. What looks good about it?
  5. What looks not so good?
  6. Would it inspire you to give?
  7. If so, why?
  8. If not, why not?

First, I’d like you to think about your answers and jot them down.

Second, I’ll tell you what I think.

Let’s begin!

Do you think this email is a “Do” or a “Don’t?”

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2 different frames

Use Behavioral Science to Positively Frame Year-End Philanthropy

Are you framing your ask as an “annual appeal” or as “we only ask once a year?”

It matters, because people will account for how much they spend on usual annual giving differently than how much they’ll spend for exceptional, one-time occurrences.

And a growing body of research in psychology and behavioral economics shows how you frame your ask can have a big difference in your fundraising results. Much of this has to do with how people mentally account for all consumer ‘purchases’  — including charitable giving.

Researchers have found people don’t treat all their money, time, effort or other resources as if they have one big pool of it. Rather, people have separate mental accounts.

When we spend resources we keep track of that expenditure based on the mental account it came from.

This has significant fundraising implications, so it’s important to delve further into this mental accounting principle.

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12 cups coffee

12 Quick Strategies to Boost Year-End Fundraising

The biggest fundraising time of the year for most nonprofits inexorably approaches.

It can be stressful.

Don’t succumb to the stress. You’ve got this!

Perhaps you can’t do everything you’d like to do this year, but you can do some things.

Here are 12 strategies that will pack a big punch.

Some you can do on your own. Some will require support from technical and/or marketing staff.

Here’s the thing:  Often it’s the little things that count. That pack a surprising wallop.

So don’t save all your energy for writing your appeal. Help your appeal along by putting some of the dozen suggestions that follow into effect.

Even just one or two will make a difference.

Let’s get started…

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colorful socks

3 Ways to Knock Your Donors’ Socks Off This December

colorful socksFor fundraisers, December is a marathon of appeals, posts, thank-yous, events, and all the other tasks associated with the busiest month of the fundraising year. For donors, it’s equally chaotic. Family, friends, work, holiday planning, and parties crowd their schedules. Advertisements clog up their email inboxes and news feeds. They receive multiple appeals from multiple nonprofits looking to capitalize on holiday generosity.

What can you do to stand out from the crowd?

Well, we have a few suggestions, and all of them boil down to one thing:

Make your donors feel amazing about supporting you!

Here’s how — with some specific suggestions.

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Thanksgiving table

Not all Holiday Fundraising is Created Equal

Thanksgiving tableWho doesn’t love a holiday?

The very word conjures up notions of celebration, warmth and love.

If you’re a donor-centered fundraising practitioner, you’d be a fool not to take advantage.

Why not tap into pre-existing positive vibes to increase the chances your appeal will be warmly received?

After all, if you can channel something positive that’s more or less universally felt, this gives you a leg up.

It puts your donors in a giving mood using familiar symbols and traditions.

Except when it doesn’t.

A true holiday fundraising story

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Title slide

5 Ways Mobile Bidding Can Help You Raise More Revenue

Title slideWhen planning a charity auction, there are several moving parts to keep track of: your venue, item procurement, guest registration, guest management, and more. Whether you’re running a silent auction or a live event, these moving parts are important and need to be carefully monitored.

So, how can you best oversee the planning process and the event itself?

Mobile bidding and auction software has grown in popularity among charity auction events. With this software, you can streamline your event planning process from start to finish and make it easier for people to bid. But before we dive into the specifics, let’s define mobile bidding.

What is mobile bidding?

Mobile bidding is a paperless bidding method that allows guests to place bids straight from their phones. The software simplifies all aspects of your live and silent auctions, your event planning and management, ticketing, and other needs. It can add engagement to the event as well.

There are many ways mobile bidding can help boost your revenue and streamline everything at your charity auction. In this article, we’ll focus on the following areas where that can happen:

  1. Item Procurement
  2. Guest Experience
  3. Competition
  4. Participants
  5. Analytics

Are you ready to take a closer look at the ways mobile bidding can help you reach your fundraising goals? Let’s get started!

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Group boosting the team effort

Easy Ways to Boost Your Nonprofit’s Monthly Giving

Group boosting the team effortDo you have monthly donors, or a monthly donor program?

If you don’t have a program, you’re likely leaving monthly donors on the table.

This is hurting your bottom line because, on balance, the net value of a monthly donor to you is more than that of a one-time donor.

So let’s look at how to turn your handful of monthly donors into a full-fledged program.

1. Begin with Proactive Strategies

If what you have right now is simply a checkoff box on your remit piece or donation landing page, you’ve got a passive strategy.

In other words, if donors don’t know why you want them to give a monthly gift there’s nothing to persuade them to check this box. Try to get inside the donor’s head and imagine what they’re thinking. It could be any of the following:

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