I’ve collected bountiful gifts for you this month to help you succeed in this most generous of seasons. It’s kind of a ‘double issue,’ as the Click-it goes on hiatus until mid-January — when it returns with a big announcement! For now, just remember, my motto is: “If I know it, I want you to know it!”
That’s why the Clairity Click-it remains free, even though I put a lot of work into curating and sending it to you on a bimonthly basis. I’m not a large corporation; it’s just me here. And I’m dedicated to paying it forward after 30 years of in-the-trenches nonprofit work. As others helped me, so do I want to help you.
But… here’s the thing. I can’t afford to lose money. So if you find value in Clairification articles I hope you’ll enroll this year for all the benefits ‘Clairification School’ has to offer. You’ll get access to all my content for a full 12 months, including original weekly articles, bonus webinars and more, in the most cost-effective way I’ve found to deliver it. And you’ll help the Click-it stay free as well. Your support makes it possible and, truly, means a lot.
P.S. If you’ve already enrolled, thank you! Let me know what topics you’d like me to cover in my upcoming articles. If not, feel free to tell me why or ask any questions you may have. Please email me at email@example.com. I read and respond to every single email.
Clairity Click-it, Your Nonprofit Ticket to…
Annual Individual (and Year-End) Giving
Click-it: Key Strategies for Fundraising by Telephone. Sometimes there’s nothing like the telephone to efficiently and effectively communicate with folks who’ve not yet given to you. See my guest article for Guidestar. And think about calling your lapsed donors so you don’t lose them!
Click-it: 3 Headline Templates for Optimizing Fundraising Appeals. Just in time for your year-end fundraising appeals come these useful templates from Mark Zobel’s Blog for writing your subject line. Get tips for how to communicate some essential aspect of your overall message, while drawing your reader deeper into the explanatory text that follows.
Click-it: A Nice Touch: Year-End Statements. It’s a “gift” to donors who itemize. It “reminds” donors who haven’t yet given. It helps you appear organized, efficient and trustworthy. All super-good outcomes. You still have time to read this article on Nonprofit Pro by Laurence Pagnoni and take him up on the great advice.
Click-it: 5 Mistakes that Could Cost You Year-End Donations. Michael Rosen of ML Innovations is back at his blog after a hiatus, and I could not be happier! Here are 5 terrific tips. If I had to pick one that too many nonprofits overlook, I’d pick #3, closely followed by #2.
Click-it: Response Round-Up: How Do You Increase Year-End Fundraising Results? Check out this collection of advice from a bunch of fundraising experts like Amy Eisenstein, Ann Green, Gail Perry, John Taylor, Julia Campbell, Lori Jacobwith, Lynn Wester, yours truly and more, curated by McCabe Callahan of Community Funded.
Finally, under year-end giving, I don’t want you to overlook the opportunity to encourage folks to make an IRA Charitable Rollover gift. This was made permanent in December 2015. For those age 70-1/2 or older who must take Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) from traditional IRAs, this is a way to lower personal income tax liability. The benefit to the donor is the IRA contribution may satisfy their entire RMD and is TAX-FREE. Tell donors to take a look at the IRA Required Minimum Distribution Worksheet from the IRS to calculate their RMD amount. The cap for eligibility of a tax-free gift is $100,000 per individual. The rollover works for smaller gifts as well as major ones, enabling donors to scale down the adjusted gross income on their tax return. The ripple effect from a modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) could also lower their taxable social security, tax bracket, capital gains tax, and even lower Medicare Part B premiums (higher-income taxpayers pay higher premiums for Medicare Part B).
To make sure your donor’s gift will qualify for the tax-free treatment, make sure they satisfy the following regulations:
- Must be at least 70-1/2 years old
- The IRA transfer must go directly from the IRA to your charity
- Married couples can each donate up to $100,000 from their individual IRA accounts
- The gift must be completed by December 31, 2017
- The gift must be an outright gift*
*Transfers of IRA gifts to donor advised funds, supporting organizations, charitable gift annuities, or charitable remainder trusts do not qualify. The gift is not eligible for an additional charitable income tax deduction.
In communicating with your donors about tax and financial planning matters, always recommend they contact their own tax, financial and/or legal advisor for additional information.
Click-it: 7 Things to do to Prepare for the Holidays…and still bring in sponsorship dollars! This comes from Chris Baylis of The Sponsorship Collective. You can also grab a free sponsorship template here.
Click-it: Key Donor Love Strategies to Keep Nonprofit Supporters Loyal. Check out my article on the Bloomerang blog. You’re going to need these tips to keep all the donors you secure this month!
Click-it: How to Use Your Smartphone to Make a Donor Thank You Video. What a great way to WOW your donors! Julia C. Campbell of JCSM shows you how. Or… you could just ask a teenager.
Click-it: 12 December Priorities for Raising Major Gifts. Only two weeks until the end of the year, but this list from Front Range Source can still help you. I like #5, 7 and 9.
Management and Strategy
Click-it: 5 Nonprofit Trends to Keep in Mind for 2018. Want to keep you up to speed on the changes that will affect your future fundraising and efficiency? Nick Morpus has you covered on the Capterra Nonprofit Technology blog. Some surprising stuff here. Did you know that over a fifth of Millennials have never written a check?
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: 19 Ways to Raise More Money From Your Donation Pages. You still have time to tweak things, and John Haydon offers up some killer tips that can truly make a difference in the number of people who give, and even the amount they donate.
Click-it: 5 Key Insights About Digital Marketing from Dreamforce 2017. These thought-provoking take-aways come from Jeff Bullas, a leading guru on using the power of social, content and digital technologies to transform our lives and businesses. This article is all about the “Intelligence Revolution,” the complexity of change, and what this means for all of us – whether for-or non-profit. If you think you can ignore what’s happening, you’re wrong. Customers (aka donors) are starting to expect a certain level of service and responsiveness. If you can’t provide it, they’ll go elsewhere. (Don’t shoot the messenger!)
FREE 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: Engagement Fundraising: The Most Effective Approach to Secure Major & Planned Gifts [Register for free webinar 1-10-18]. You absolutely won’t want to miss this one! I’m delighted to welcome Zach Shefska of Market Smart to present a free webinar exclusively for the Clairification community about how to make the “moves” and “touches” needed to take donors on an absorbing philanthropic journey — one that culminates in a major or legacy gift. [NOTE: This webinar is a nice complement to my upcoming 8-week Winning Major Gifts eCourse which commences January 22nd].
Management and Strategy
Click-it: 10 Tech Tools and Skills Fundraisers Can’t Succeed Without in 2018 [Register for free webinar 12-19-17]. Wild Apricot hosts Joe Waters in this session that will help you plan ahead and budget for what you need to succeed in 2018 and beyond.
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: 10 Emerging Trends in Online Communications and Fundraising [Register for free webinar, 12-19-17]. This is Network for Good’s final free webinar, and couldn’t come at a better time for year-end fundraising and next year planning.
FREE DOWNLOADABLE RESOURCES
Annual Individual Giving
Click-it: 30-Day Plan To Maximize Year-End Fundraising Results [Download free e-Guide]. Network for Good has created this planner, good for the end of the year or any time-limited fundraising campaign.
Click-it: Feasibility Study Deliverables [Download free e-Guide]. Jerry Panas knows a thing or twenty about capital campaigns, and why you shouldn’t embark on them without a feasibility study. Check out what he has to say.
Click-it: How to Start a Successful Blog [Download free 10-week blog planner], HubSpot and General Assembly have teamed up to help you through all the steps; from developing content to picking a place to host your blog.
Click-it: First Time Donor Retention Template [Download free e-template]. Our friends at Bloomerang know that without a plan, it’s likely a new donor will receive messaging from you that is inappropriate for this stage of the relationship.
Click-it: Holiday Survival Kit #1: Master Donor Retention [Download free 2 e-Guides]. Classy helps you out with donor communication tactics and ideas to help you minimize donor churn.
Click-it: How to Solve Your Donor Retention Problem [Click to hear Amy Eisenstein interview me on the subject] You’re going to want to keep all the new donors you acquire at year-end, right? Take a listen.
Click-it: 2017 Peer-to-Peer Fundraising Study [Download report]. From Nonprofit Pro comes this useful study to help you learn more about the fundamentals of peer-to-peer fundraising, how social relationships affect fundraising outcomes, and what’s working/not working.
Click-it: How to Create a Super Advocates Program [Download free eGuide] by Colin Delany of epolitics and Jeanette Russell of Blackbaud. Also check out Super Advocates: Your Nonprofit’s Most Powerful Supporters on the npENGAGE blog. Learn to leverage the real power of social networks by building a team of engaged advocates who will share your message with their networks.
Click-it: Social Media Editorial Calendar [Download free template]. This comes from Lilach Bullock, a social media strategist extraordinaire. It’ not nonprofit-specific, but it will show you what all your online competition – that’s everybody – is considering doing in 2018.
Click-it: Network for Good Fundraising Help Desk [Register here for 15 and 30-minute calls]. What’s better than the Thanksgiving Turkey Hotline? How about the Network for Good Year-End Help Desk? I’m giving a big shout out to Morrie Warshawski for giving me the heads up about this awesome opportunity! Network for Good is offering free working sessions to help you with this critical year-end period when so much giving occurs – 22% of online giving for the entire year happens in the final 48 hours! The Help Desk will be staffed by some of the industry’s leading fundraiser experts who are available to work through any of your last minute year-end fundraising challenges.
Did You Miss My Recent Articles?
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Here are links to some relevant archived articles designed to help you with year-end fundraising. You get six free articles; then you’ll want to enroll.
Hope to see you in Clairification School!