How is it going? How are you dealing with the transition to a different world space?
I know it can be challenging to put all your worries, anxieties, frustrations and tensions on the shelf. It’s that way for me — which is why I’m trying to consciously focus on the places where we find our power, values, wisdom and possibilities.
Whenever I feel myself slipping into a space of criticism, judgment or negativity, I try to pull myself back from the darkness; then move forward towards the light. I’ll be writing about this more on the Clairification blog in the coming weeks and months.
Today it’s all about the resources that have been speaking to me over the past two weeks. Sometimes work can be more fun, energizing and meaningful when you learn a new skill, are exposed to a different point of view, or if you just take a somewhat different approach. Here’s a collection of articles, whitepapers, webinars, templates and guides to broaden your outlook!
This newsletter is free to you thanks to my sponsor, Bloomerang. I hope you enjoy these resources as much as I enjoy finding them for you. As you may know, my motto is: “If I know it, I want you to know it!”
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Thank you SO MUCH for doing the important work you do,
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Clairity Click-it, Your Nonprofit Ticket to…
NEW OPINIONS FEATURE
Community-Centric and Donor-Centric Fundraising
Click-it: White development colleagues, we need to talk about fundraiser fragility. Vu Le of Nonprofit AF, who can be quite the cage-rattler, here presents a balanced view of community-centric and donor-centric fundraising. He writes: “People who have a lot of wealth have a lot of power in our world, sadly, and their egos are easily bruised. So much of fundraising involves protecting wealthy people’s ego so they will keep giving. We are terrified of offending them. Over time, this fear gets internalized and becomes fragility.” He suggests we’re still treating donors like ATMs; we’re just very nice to our ATMs. How might we treat them differently when the occasion calls for it?
Click-it: Beyond Survival: Post-Disruption Nonprofit Culture Strategy. Part 3 of a series for the Bloomerang blog, this is my attempt to integrate the best of both fundraising philosophies. Your culture will make or break fundraising success, especially over the long term. And developing a loving, empowering, all-embracing culture that meets everyone’s needs is a balancing act — one requiring focus, introspection, extrospection, and fierce honesty. Can one build a culture that not only promotes goodness but also does no harm? Yes, if we reset and lean into “philanthropy” across the board. I sometimes think of philanthropy as a sort of religion — a cultural system of behaviors, practices, and ethics with “love of humanity” at its core.
Annual (Year-Round) Fundraising
Click-it: When a Color Test Isn’t a Waste of Time. I love color, and I’ve had great success with colored envelopes for appeals, so had to share this article from the Agitator-DonorVoice blog. What’s notable is the focus not just on testing, but on testing with a hypothesis. See what you can come up with to text next. What’s your hypothesis, and why?
Click-it: 4 Strategies to Increase Donor Loyalty. The sorry state of donor retention has been a topic of discussion in the social benefit sector for at least the past decade. But just because you’re now thinking “oh, yeah, I know that’s important,” doesn’t mean you’re doing anything particularly strategic to improve your results. Thinking is not doing. So… let’s approach this from a new angle. Over the period of the pandemic, the Merkle “2021 Loyalty Barometer Report” showed four trends in consumer thoughts on rewards and benefits. In this article for the Bloomerang blog I dive into them, applying a nonprofit spin to increase donor loyalty.
Click-it: How to run an online raffle. Not quite ready for an in-person crowd? Here’s a great idea from 4aGoodCause, and they give you step-by-step instructions how to make this happen. It might be a good way to raise some interim money while you’re planning for a larger event sometime in the future.
Major and Legacy Gift Fundraising
Click-it: Want to Raise More Money? Hire Administrative Support! Want to make an irrefutable case for hiring administrative support? Look no further than this is an oldie but goodie from the Veritus Group, making the hard-to-argue-with logical financial case (in terms of ROI) for supporting your major gift staff.
Making Meetings Work
Click-it: For Productive Meetings, Name What’s in the Room. “When you acknowledge what is on people’s minds, they feel seen – and will be more open to the meeting conversation.” So says Dr. Renee Rubin Ross in this article on the Ross Collective blog. If you get nothing else, there’s a great exercise here to do with your board or staff team next time you meet online. I’d bet it will be illuminating.
Online Fundraising and Marketing (aka Digital)
Click-it: Automation for Nonprofits: 3 Dangerous Pitfalls to Avoid. Sometimes good things, taken to extremes, become harmful. In this article for Candid, Steven Shattuck outlines ways automation tools can hurt your fundraising potential. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t use automation tools. Just use them to support people, not to replace them.
Psychology of Giving
Click-it: It Is All About a Donor Saying ‘Yes!’ To get there, you’re smart to guide your donor in a manner that makes their decision-making easy. In this Nonprofit Pro article by Duke Haddad he cites wisdom from numerous corners, all converging in the closing thought that at the end of the day you’re selling significance. Try to frame asking that way, and you’ll succeed.
Click-it: FAQ about the Basics of Donate Buttons [Read this step-by-step guide]. Any place where you are likely to get traffic on your website is a good place to feature a donate button. Are you doing this religiously? Let the experts at Salsa show you the way.
Click-it: Discipline vs Deadline (And Why Time Management Fails). This is from Sean D’Souza, Psychotactics, who writes on philosophy, psychology, neuroscience and more applied to management and marketing. Here you’ll come to understand the importance of deadlines. You can apply this professionally and personally.
WEBINARS, ROUNDTABLES & ON-DEMAND AUDIO RESOURCES
If you can’t attend live, or are interested in sessions happening at overlapping times, note many are available via recording – but ONLY if you REGISTER!
Click-it: Cure Your Board Member Blues [Register for free webinar 7-9-2021]. Encourage your board members to attend this session from Top Nonprofits and Maryanne Dersch. Participants will learn why the board structure in nonprofits makes communication difficult, how to engage a board and how to implement systems of accountability to keep the engagement going. You’ll come away with actionable strategies to engage your board in marketing, fundraising, advocacy and more.
Donor Retention and Loyalty
Click-it: Focus on fewer [Listen to free on-demand podcast interview]. Stephen Woessner interviews relationship economist David Noor on the Predicitve ROI website. His wisdom is easily applied to nonprofit fundraising. You’ll learn why prioritizing relationships with intentionality and being strategic in which relationships you invest in is crucial. He also covers how the pandemic affected our relationships, how to sustain digital relationships, and why focusing on fewer, more authentic relationships can boost results. This is packed with information.
Major and Legacy Gift Fundraising
Click-it: Winds of Change: An Organizational Shift in Non-Cash Asset Fundraising [Register for free webinar, 7-28-21]. Join the planned giving experts at Stelter with Jackie Franey, Director of Gift Planning Fundraising for The Nature Conservancy, for this dive into why promoting gifts from assets other than cash can be transformational for your nonprofit.
Click-it: Nervous About the Ask [Watch free on-demand video-cast]. You’ll hear from three nonprofit professionals (Aimee Sheridan; Douglas L. Page and Barry K. McConnell) about their own experiences and “aha moments” on this Movie Mondays broadcast courtesy of Chris Davenport of 501videos. I really like the second piece of information Aimee shares, so listen through to the end; it’s under 5 minutes.
Click-it: How Often Should an MGO Refresh Their Caseload [Tune in to the on-demand “Question of the Month”]. This will take only 4 minutes of your time, but what you’ll learn from Richard Perry and Jeff Schreifels of the Veritus Group will make you think. And the beginning of the fiscal year is a good time for this type of reflection and planning. If you need help knowing who to put on your caseload, you can grab this White Paper.
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: How Marketing Automation Can Work for You [Register for free webinar, 7-13-2021]. The brilliant folks at Firespring bring you this hot topic session around automated multi-channel marketing. Marketers have become accustomed to integrating their online efforts, but integrating with offline tactics like print will become the norm. Learn how to take creative marketing ideas, build them into data-driven, multi-channel marketing campaigns and launch them in one integrated platform.
Click-it: How to Drive Engagement by Integrating Mobile with Your Existing Fundraising Tools and Efforts [Register for free webinar, 7-22-2021]. Perhaps you’ve been thinking about adding texting options to your nonprofit communications and fundraising but don’t really understand how it might work? How do you share data between different systems (e.g., mobile and your donor database)? If you want to send a personalized thank you video once a donation is made, how is that launched? That’s where experts like Rally Corp come in! In this session they’ll use integration between their platform and Classy as a case example, but you can apply the principles to whatever platform you have (and they’ll, of course, be happy to help).
Click-it: Cryptocurrency and the Future of Donor Advised Funds [Listen to free, on-demand podcast]. Accepting cryptocurrency may be in your nonprofit’s future. I know, whoa! Joan Garry hosts Robbie Heeger, the CEO of Enaoment, America’s first Community Foundation to be powered by a blockchain, for this Nonprofits are Messy podcast.
Click-it: The 7 Types of Friction that are Killing Your Donations [Watch free on-demand webinar]. Did you know most donation pages have an 87% failure rate — nearly 9 out of 10 donation page visitors don’t end up giving? Yikes! The folks at NextAfter share seven types of friction that can slow donors, tangible ways to reduce friction and examples of the most common types of friction from real live donation pages. This is useful stuff!
DOWNLOADABLE GUIDES, WHITE PAPERS & OTHER RESOURCES
Direct Mail Fundraising
Click-it: 2021 Q1 Quarterly Mail Processing Report [Download free benchmark guide]. This comprehensive report from the experts at Merkle shows 2020 ended on a high note and continued into the first quarter of 2021. This shows not only what happened in terms of donations, but also what major events during the period likely impacted results. Fascinating stuff! Results are also broken down by sector, giving you a good idea of how your organization measures up. You’ll even see results for check vs. credit card giving.
Click-it: Hybrid Event Planner [Download free eGuide]. Last year nonprofits let necessity be the mother of invention, getting extra creative by moving to hybrid events with little to no time for planning. What many folks learned is hybrid fundraising events combine the best aspects of in-person and virtual events to create a new format many nonprofits find is really working to their advantage. This year you’ve got time to plan strategically, and that’s why Qgiv put together this hybrid event planner filled with all sorts of tips, checklists, examples and other resources. Yay!
Did You Miss My Newest Articles?
- Hold these 4 Nonprofit Fundraising Truths to Be Self Evident
- Where Are Our Nonprofit’s Legacy Donors?
- How to Rock Nonprofit Text Messaging Appeals
- Wrong Ways to Woo Nonprofit Donors
- Philanthropy is a Team Sport
- 10 Strategies to Actively Build Nonprofit Donors Trust
- 4 Strategies to Listen so Others Will Talk
Finally… if you have a question, any question…
Check out my free fundraising advice column on the Bloomerang blog! Ask your question here. And bookmark the Ask an Expert page! See How to Publicly Recognize Memorial Gifts.
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