Talk of vaccination is in the air, so I looked up the definition: “treatment with a vaccine to produce immunity against a disease. ” I hope you and your loved ones have been, or are soon, able to boost your immunity to Covid-19 disease. Meanwhile, why not focus in on the other “diseases” — the enemies your nonprofit is fighting on a daily basis. What if you were able to raise more money to weaken whatever forces contribute to the problems you’re endeavoring to solve?
I’ve collected for you a slew of resources to help you now, mid-pandemic, and to prepare for the day when things do get back to a post-covid version of normal. As I’ve said throughout this prolonged period of disruption, make sure you meet your urgent needs. But also use this opportunity to take a long view. Crisis has a way of forcing us to re-evaluate what’s important, and what’s not. Seize this opportunity to innovate, adapt and tweak what you’ve been doing so you’ll come out on the other side even stronger than you were before.
Also take some time to be grateful – and proud. You are making the world a better place. Your mission was important yesterday. It’s important today. It will be important tomorrow. You are on the front lines of enacting values other people truly care about. If they didn’t, they wouldn’t be your supporters. So please keep the faith in your vision. I promise you, it is one that is shared.
What you do matters. A lot.
It is my privilege and pleasure to help you enact your vision, mission and values with as much joy, hope and effectiveness as possible,
I hope you’ll also enroll this year in ‘Clairification School’. You’ll get access to ALL my content for a full 12 months. People tell me all the time it’s a bargain, especially considering the tips that help them build saleable skills and raise much, much more than they invest by enrolling.
With gratitude for all you do,
P.S. Don’t forget to bookmark my Ask an Expert fundraising advice column on the Bloomerang blog! Ask your question here. See this week’s What Are the Best Questions to Ask in a Donor Survey?
Clairity Click-it, Your Nonprofit Ticket to…
SPECIAL CATEGORY: Tips for Not-So-Normal Times
Annual (all the time) Giving
Click-it: Donor touches? Paper is still your best bet. Mary Cahalane, Hands-On Fundraising, makes the case for direct mail – with supporting data. Email and social media are great, but nothing can replace a personal letter.
Click-it: What Do You Do in a Period of Philanthropy Triage? The past year changed everything your donors thought they knew about the world – and that includes you, your nonprofit’s place in the world, and your nonprofit’s mission among their list of priority philanthropies. As much as you may believe you’ve communicated and connected with them, chances are it hasn’t been enough. In this article for the Bloomerang blog I discuss what you should be doing now to keep your donors close.
Click-it: 6 Tips to Improve Zoom Meetings with Your Donors and Volunteers. Many of us are trying to keep donors close via Zoom calls and events. Andrea Kihlstedt, Capital Campaign Masters, offers some useful tips to make these virtual strategies a pleasure for everyone involved.
Online Social Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: 4 digital media trends for nonprofits in 2021. The folks at RKD Group look at what fundraising during a pandemic has taught us. Make no mistake, the fundraising landscape has forever changed.
Click-it: Virtual Solicitation Done Right: How to Ask for Donations via Zoom. This year has been a real adjustment, but you really can conduct a successful major gift ask via Zoom. Amy Eisenstein offers some practical tips.
Click-it: Nonprofit Fundraising Videos Inspire More Giving. Sandy Rees, Get Fully Funded, takes a deep dive into the different types of videos you can use to inspire philanthropy. Whatever your size or shape, you’ll find useful tips and tools to make the most of this timely strategy.
WEBINARS, ROUNDTABLES & ON-DEMAND AUDIO RESOURCES
If you can’t attend live, note that many are available via recording – but only if you register!
Click-it: 2021 Fundraising Mastermind Conference [Register for free one-day online conference, 2-23-2021]. Joe Garecht has put together seven experts to get you up-to-date on strategies that will work for you in the coming year. Get tips, tricks and strategies, plus get your questions answered on such topics as: Virtual events; Building donor relationships, even virtually; Product fundraising; Online fundraising compliance; Multi-channel communications Google ad grant spending, and engaging donor retention strategies.
Click-it: Creating 5-Star Special Events in the Virtual Age [Listen to free, on-demand podcast]. Joan Garry, Nonprofits are Messy, hosts two veteran fundraising event specialists. Learn how intimate virtual events can be as they share all the crucial elements to succeed in the planning and execution stages of a truly successful virtual event. It includes tips on barriers you can eliminate and tools to offer expanded visibility benefits to corporate sponsors.
Other Articles: The Beat Goes On
Annual (all the time) Fundraising
Click-it: A medieval ‘course’ in writing an appeal. Mark Phillips of Queer Ideas takes us on a walk down memory lane, charting the early beginnings of professional fundraising back to the middle ages. Found this on the SOFII blog.
Click-it: Protect Your Monthly Donors. Forewarned is forearmed. Monthly donations guru Erica Waasdorp shares strategies to assure you don’t lose access to your recurring donors’ data if your donation platform or donor base company merge. On the Nonprofit Pro blog.
Click-it: The easy-math way to know if you can test your fundraising idea. You probably here a lot about testing. It’s terrific, and well worth the effort. But only if it will be statistically significant. Learn more about this in this article from Jeff Brooks on Future Fundraising Now.
Click-it: Nonprofit Fundraisers are in the Happiness Delivery Business. If you want to renew and upgrade donors, it’s time to get this straight. Believe it or not, research shows to match the benefit of giving money away – in every income bracket — you’d have to earn twice as much money as you do now. In this article for the Bloomerang blog I discuss how to reframe fundraising so you’ll never feel bad about offering people the opportunity for this “feel good.”
Major and Legacy Giving
Click-it: How the Los Angeles Jewish Home Doubled its Planned Giving Growth. Check out this case study from Stelter the development of a comprehensive marketing program to uncover and steward planned gift donors.
Online Fundraising and Marketing
Click-it: How to Plan an Awareness Campaign for Your Nonprofit. Is there an awareness day or month that ties in with your mission? The folks at Wired Impact have a step-by-step plan to help you take advantage.
Click-it: Social Media Engagement for Nonprofits: 5 Key Steps. It doesn’t matter if you have thousands of Facebook followers if none of them will ever donate, volunteer, or spread the word. The folks at FlipCause outline steps to get strategic with your social media messaging.
Strategy and Management
Click-it: Things We LOVE Enough to Keep In The Budget. Here are some insights from pro fundraisers regarding tools, strategies and other essentials for your consideration as you budget for the year ahead. On the Donor Relations Guru blog.
Click-it: Four Lessons From For-Profits. Ephraim Gopin, 1832 Communications, offers pointers to help you focus your work and make your efforts more productive. It’s hard to pick a favorite lesson, but for me it might be #4.
Click-it: What 2020 year-end fundraising can tell us about 2021. The good folks at M+R have collected the data and come up with some trends as to what’s working. Stuff you may not be optimizing currently included frequency of emailing, use of personalized text messaging and online advertising.
Other Learning Opportunities
WEBINARS & ON-DEMAND AUDIO RESOURCES
If you can’t attend live, note that many are available via recording – but only if you register!
Click-it: Fundraising Communications 3: Preparing Volunteer Leaders to Serve as Ambassadors [Register for free webinar 3-3-2021]. Asking is amplified by the power of social proof, and who better to testify on your behalf than your own board and volunteers. Campbell & Company will describe exactly how to get your peer fundraisers fired up to share your case for support in their words.
Click-it: How to Run a Successful Fundraising Campaign [Watch this free, quick “how to” video] from Vanessa Chase, The Storytelling Nonprofit. It will take you through all the steps to plan, organize, launch and run whatever type of campaign is on your upcoming agenda. It’s simple and super practical.
Click-it: The Current State of Donor Retention And What Fundraisers Can Do About It [Register for free webinar, 3-17-2021]. Every year the Fundraising Effectiveness Project gets into the nitty gritty of donor and gift retention averages across a broad range of nonprofits over the preceding year. If you wonder how your results stack up, and how you can improve, check out this Kindful presentation with Steven Shattuck
Major and Legacy Gifts
Click-it: How to Find (and Keep) Hidden Planned Gifts in Your Database [Register for free webinar, 2-25-2021]. In hundreds of donor data files analyzed by Veritus Group, a common problem has emerged. You’re likely losing bequests and other planned gifts you don’t even know about — plus some you do know about — simply because of how you’re treating these folks. If you want to learn why, and what you can do about it, you won’t want to miss this!
Click-it: 3 strategies for success with older donors in 2021 [Register for free webinar, 2-23-2021]. More than half of charitable giving comes from donors age 65+; this is especially true for planned and major gifts. Join the experts at Freewill as they discuss trends shaping charitable giving behavior in this demographic, tax savvy gifts, and the best ways to connect and engage with this group.
Click-it: 2021 Customer Experiences Imperatives: What Marketers Need to Know about Digital Transformation [Register for free webinar, 2-25-2021]. Donors are also customers, and the nonprofit world can learn a lot by borrowing from what the for-profit sector knows about building customer experiences to improve retention. Merkle works with hundreds of clients in both sectors, and there’s much info here that is transferable.
Click-it: How to Rock A P2P Campaign During A Giving Day [Register for free webinar, 2-24-2021]. Neon One shares tips regarding what to consider before launching a peer-to-peer campaign; tips for motivating volunteer fundraisers; what to include in a volunteer toolkit, and post-event strategies.
Click-it: Getting a Foot in the Door: How to Onboard Subscribers to Your Nonprofit E Newsletter. Want to grow your email list and create more opportunities to convert subscribers into donors? Then listen to Ephraim Gopin lay out what you must do in this recorded session for Qgiv. This is not just opinion; it’s all based on research of the 100 largest nonprofits in the U.S.
DOWNLOADABLE GUIDES, WHITE PAPERS & OTHER RESOURCES
Major and Legacy Gifts
Click-it: Starting a Successful Major Gift Program [Download free white paper]. The greatest source of revenue growth for non-profits in the next decade is going to come through improved management and execution of major gift strategies. Learn from the Veritus Group experts where to begin, what expectations are reasonable for the first year or two, and how to balance a major gifts program with your other fundraising strategies.
Last week Early Bird reminder: If you want to develop valuable new career skills, February 28th is your last day to register for the 8-module online Economics of the Major Gifts Pipeline course that begins Monday, March 29th. Use Coupon Code: CA5 to grab a last-week discount: register here.
Did You Miss My Newest Articles?
Here are links to the most recent articles on the Clairification blog. I think you’ll find these either thought-provoking, practical or both. Hope so!
- Bring Top Value to Your Donor Survey
- Strategic Nonprofit Board Recruitment
- Legacy Gifts Don’t Usually Fall From the Sky
- 8 Strategies to Celebrate Nonprofit Donors on Valentine’s Day
- 9 Things Your Nonprofit Needs to Know About Monthly Donations
- Are the Rich Motivated to Give Differently?
Please support my extraordinary sponsors (see below). The Clairity Click-it content is free, and Clairification School is affordable because of their generosity.
REMINDER for Clairification School students: Don’t forget to log in to your “My Clairification/Subscriber Dashboard/Monthly Tips” to grab your exclusive, timely tips for each month. February’s tips are posted! If you’re not yet an enrolled student, you can get in on the fun here!
My motto is: “If I know it, I want you to know it.” Don’t miss out.