February brings Valentine’s Day, and your opportunity to double down on #donorlove. Which is why I’ve got lots and lots of loverly resources this issue to help you reach out and build more meaningful relationships with your supporters.
Before we get into it, I want to send a shout out to my 2020 Clairity Click-it sponsor, Bloomerang, for keeping this newsletter free. Remember, my motto is: “If I know it, I want you to know it!” They’re making it possible for me to spend time curating (yes, I read every single article I recommend to you) and sending the Clairity Click-it to you on a bimonthly basis. If you appreciate this as much as I do, please let them know!
I hope you’ll also enroll this year in ‘Clairification School’. You’ll get access to ALL my content for a full 12 months. If you can’t afford to hire me as a coach, and you can’t afford to attend an online class or a conference, I’m hoping you can afford to pay less than $2/week to receive original, weekly articles, plus webinars, bonuses, an 800 article archive, and more. All with the goal to help you raise much, much more than you invest by enrolling.
How do I manage to do this so cost-effectively? Thanks to my sponsors (scroll down to the bottom) and readers like you! Your support makes it possible for everyone and, truly, means a lot.
Thank you sincerely for doing the significant work you do. From the words of Albert Schweitzer: “The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.”
What you do matters. A lot.
P.S. I am now answering quick questions publicly on the Bloomerang blog. They say one person with a question means at least 10 others have the same question, so… be brave and help yourself and your peers. Your identity will be kept anonymous, so… no fears. Ask your question here. And bookmark the Ask an Expert page!
P.P.S. POSTAL INCREASE ALERT: Urgent Action Needed TODAY. Your action is needed before January 31st if you don’t want to see nonprofit mailing rates go up by leaps and bounds. Check out Roger Craver’s call to arms on the Agitator-DonorVoice blog.
Clairity Click-it, Your Nonprofit Ticket to…
Click-it: The Twelve Appeals of the Year. This is a brilliant post, complete with cartoon, about what works/doesn’t work to get folks to open and respond to your appeal. From Mark Phillips, Queer Ideas blog.
Click-it: You can stop guessing about what works in fundraising and what doesn’t. There is so much wisdom packed into this succinct article by veteran fundraiser Tom Ahern. I implore you to take it to heart. On the Candid blog.
Click-it: 4 tips for building a strong nonprofit board. Fundraising success depends, in large part, on the role your board plays. This 4aGoodCause article from Ronald Pruitt offers tips for recruitment, orientation, communication, fundraising engagement and more.
Click-it: Boards Need Staff to Support Scary Fundraising Role. If your board isn’t stepping up to the plate, it may be your fault. Learn how your board’s ‘development and fundraising role’ is much broader than asking, and how you can help them get more engaged in my article on the Bloomerang blog.
Click-it: This Thank You Email Gave Me The Warm And Fuzzies. An “ain’t it the truth” article from Kristina LeRoux, Nonprofit Marketing Guide, about why you must thank every donor. Personally. With gusto and gush!
Click-it: Donor Cultivation: 5 Data-Driven Strategies to Boost Your Retention Rate. Nathan Hill, NextAfter, offers some field-tested strategies to increase contributed income. They’re easy, and the results are measurable. I like #2. What are you waiting for?
Click-it: Beyond End of Year Fundraising: Give to Donors Now. Don’t wait! If you want donors to give again, give to them. ASAP. And repeatedly. Read all about it in my article for the Bloomerang blog.
Click-it: Beyond End of Year Fundraising: Keep Giving JOY. “Joy to the world!” shouldn’t end after the holidays. Learn to make your fundraising the gentle art of teaching the joy of giving. It’s all here in my article on the Bloomerang blog.
Click-it: 5 Ways Every Nonprofit Can Be Donor-Centric.Oldie-but-goodie from Jay Love on the Guidestar-Candid blog. All about how to inculcate a donor-centric attitude organization-wide. This will take you far, I promise.
Click-it: Finding the Real Donor-Centric Unicorn. Kevin Shulman writes about donor identity in a deep, spell-binding way on the Agitator-DonorVoice blog. It’s work to approach your donor database this way, but the results may make your donors happier. And happier donors give more and stay longer. And that will make you happier too.
Click-it: How To Organize The Perfect Fundraising Gala. A panel of experts open the curtains to reveal the truth behind the huge amount of resources that go into launching a successful Gala event. Don’t do it unless you know what you’re getting into, and don’t have a more productive use for your resources. From Forbes.
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: 5 Habits of Successful Nonprofit Social Media Managers in 2020. Julia Claire Campbell, Marketing for the Modern Nonprofit, is my ‘go-to’ expert for evolving social media strategies. Here she shows you how to build a community, not just an audience, plus how to schedule and focus your resources to avoid burn-out on your road to success.
Click-it: 5 Facebook Fundraising Tips for Nonprofits. Chances are you’ve got a FB page but aren’t maximizing it for fundraising. Learn why you should consider this – as well as how to make it happen — from Will Schmidt on the Classy blog.
Click-it: Nonprofit Email Marketing: 7 Things to Try in 2020. Here are some simple tips from Tech Soup you can easily put to work to improve your online marketing and fundraising results. Pick one or two – and have at it!
Major and Legacy Gifts
Click-it: Make Major Donor Resistance Your Opportunity – Part 1. Sometimes when working with major donor prospects they say “yes” right away. More often, they don’t. You may not get an outright “no” (in fact, usually you won’t), yet you’ll get a hesitation or what we call major donor resistance. Learn how to deal with this in my article on the Bloomerang blog.
Click-it: How to Overcome Common Donor Resistance – Part 2. Here I get more specific on the Bloomerang blog and give you one secret I’ve found to work like magic in overcoming donor resistance.
Click-it: How to Connect with Capital Campaign Donors BEFORE Your Campaign. Andrea Kihlstedt, Capital Campaign Toolkit, knows everything there is to know about major gift development. Here are some terrific, strategic questions to keep in mind as you strive to build relationships and get to know your donors
Management and Strategy
Click-it: Why are we meeting? If your meetings are driving you crazy, check out this article (and cartoon) from Tom Fishburne, Marketoonist. He has a real knack for distilling things, and you’ll find some useful info here.
Click-it: Donor Research: The Key to Better Donor Relationships. Check out this wonderfully comprehensive article from Qgiv describing all the different strategies you can choose from to learn more about your donor prospects.
Click-it: 7 mistakes that can derail a promising job interview. Tuck this away for the next time you’re contemplating a job change. Or use it as a manager to assess the strength of your candidates. This Fast Company article is a great reminder of ways we all, unconsciously, fail to put our best foot forward. Here’s one piece of advice I like: “Reinforcing the same message over and over again may feel repetitive to you, but it will make you sound focused to the interviewer.” Also, #7 is super important.
FREE AUDIO-VISUAL LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
The more you learn, the more you grow.
Finding webinars you’d like to attend that overlap? Note that for many of these webinars you can obtain a copy of the recording if you’re unable to join live – as long as you register!
Click-it: Intentional Donor Upgrades: Being Purposeful with Your Mid-Level Donors [Register for free webinar, 2-5-2020]. In this Mid-Level Master Series, Pursuant’s Whitney Norman and Ryan Carpenter will explore intentional donor upgrades and discuss what strategies you need to put in place plus what technology will help you achieve success.
Click-it: How to Modernize Your Recurring Giving Program This Year [Register for free webinar, 2-11-2020]. Companies like Amazon have set the bar high by making standard and recurring purchases as easy as one click. Donors expect the same user experience when giving to nonprofits. Join the folks from Classy to learn actionable ways to tailor your recurring giving program to appeal to today’s donors.
Click-it: How to Create an Engaging Donor Journey in 2020 [Register for free webinar, 1-28-2020]. Nonprofit Tech for Good hosts Donor Perfect to help you build a targeted multichannel donor journey that ensures every member of your community feels connected to your cause throughout the year. You’ll also learn to track and measure your success!
Click-it: Is There A Grant For My Nonprofit? [Download free webinar replay]. Margit Brazda Poirier of Grants4Good joins Bloomerang to show you how to find the right grants for your nonprofit organization’s important work!
Major and Legacy Gifts
Click-it: 5 Proven Strategies and the One Absolute That Will Grow Your Major Gift Program [Register for free webinar 2-5-2020 + bonus whitepaper]. Join the experts at Veritus for help in accurately forecasting revenue, year-over-year, from your major donor caseload. You’ll also receive ‘Creating Strategic Plans and Goals for Every Major Donor.’ Richard Perry and Jeff Schreifels are the best – so don’t miss this opportunity!
Click-it: What Does It All Mean? Incorporating Giving USA’s New Findings and Considerations into Your Planned Giving Work [Register for free webinar, 2-25-2020]. Join veteran planned giving expert Donna Bandelloni and the stellar team at Stelter to turn data trends into action that will benefit your bottom line, today and tomorrow.
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: Mobile Marketing Tips for Every Generation [Register for free webinar 2-4-2020]. Mobile marketing is a key component of any comprehensive development strategy. And if you don’t keep up you’ll lag behind, losing online visitors, volunteer workers and advocates, donors and gifts. Join Molly Coke of Firespring for a unique perspective on utilizing technology to build sustainable relationships.
Click-it: Imperative One: Deliver the Total Customer Experience [Register for free webinar, 2-11-2020]. You probably know I love to borrow from other disciplines, and the folks at Merkle are experts in marketing for both nonprofit and for-profit institutions. This is your opportunity to learn why you better integrate your fundraising and marketing staff/departments if you want to deliver a satisfying customer (aka donor) experience.
FREE DOWNLOADABLE MATERIALS
Click-it: Great Ways to Find New Donors for Your Nonprofit [Download free e-Book]. If you’ve been struggling with making cold calls and begging your board for names, then you need this e-book from Joe Garecht Fundraising.
Click-it: Monthly Content Planner Kit [Download free guide]. First you’ll want to read Vanessa Chase (The Storytelling Nonprofit) Lockshin’s article about creating a content bank for your nonprofit; then scroll down to the bottom to download the planner. She reveals the biggest mistake you’re likely making.
Donor Advised Funds
Click-it: Donor Advised Funds: The Ultimate Guide for Nonprofits [Download free e-Guide]. You keep hearing about them, more and more, right? So why not take advantage of this comprehensive resource from Market Smart? They’ve even built widgets and tools to help make giving through a DAF more seamless and frictionless for your donors!
Online Social Marketing and Fundraising
Click-it: The Ultimate Nonprofit Guide to Facebook Fundraising Campaigns [Download free e-Book]. Grab this free 42-page guide by Julia C. Campbell from Nonprofit Library to learn how to use Facebook for your fundraising efforts.
Click-it: 2020 Nonprofit Communications Trends Report [Read summary; Download free report]. This recently released annual report from Kivi LeRoux Miller and the Nonprofit Marketing Guide team has some sobering news, yet also a lot of good news. News you can, and should, use. Check it out so you know what you must do to get up to speed in the coming year – and beyond.
Did You Miss My Recent Articles?
Here are links to the most recent articles on the Clairification blog. I think you’ll find these fairly practical. Hope so!
- How to Kill Your Nonprofit Career: Gumball Theory
- Philanthropy, Not Fundraising: I Have a Dream 2020
- 3 Ridiculously Easy Strategies to Boost Fundraising by 27%
- 6 Steps to Fuel Your Major Gift Journey
- Easy-to-Implement Legacy Giving Strategies for Small Nonprofits – Do’s and Don’ts
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