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Maximizing Your Donor Relationships

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Have you, and your non-profit team, thought about how well you are maximizing your donor relationships?  I’ll bet the answer is “no.”  And that’s ok – you’ve got a lot on your plate.  But today, I want to suggest setting some time aside to think it through. Here’s how I think about it: donor acquisition […]

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How to Maximize Planned Giving at Your Non-Profit

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What do you think when you hear the term “planned giving?” Do those words conjure up images of long legal documents, years-long cultivation cycles, and headaches for you and your team? Would you believe me if I told you that for the most part, planned gifts are easy to obtain, simple to create, and can […]

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How to Get a 2nd Gift from New Donors

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Did you know that the second gift you get from a new donor is almost as important as the first?  Seriously – in large part, it is the second gift that determines whether or not this new donor will become a lifelong giver to your non-profit, or remain just a one-time donor. According to the […]

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What Every Non-Profit Ought to Know about Direct Mail Fundraising

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Most non-profits I know are skittish about direct mail fundraising, because it requires an initial investment of time and money.  Picking up the phone to call a donor takes courage, but it doesn’t cost money.  Sending out an e-mail is easy and free. With direct mail, on the other hand, there are lots of costs […]

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Use the 5/5/3 Rule to Guarantee Great Donor Relationships at Your Non-Profit

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Building great relationships is the essence of good fundraising.  Your job as a non-profit is to find as many people as you can who are passionate about your work, and then work hard to build strong relationships with them.  Donors need to feel like part of your team and know just how integral they are […]

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You Can Beg Your Board for New Names, or You Can Earn Them

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I can’t tell you how many times I have heard this plaintive cry from executive directors, development directors, and even board members themselves: “If only our board would give us more names!  I know they know more people… we need them to get us in to see their contacts!” I’m a believer that non-profit boards […]

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3 Quick Ideas for Building Fundraising Relationships with Large Companies

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I’m often asked what the best way is to turn large companies in a particular city or town into donors to a certain non-profit organization.  The short answer is that, as with all donor cultivation, you need to build a relationship with the people at that company and make them feel like part of your […]

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The 60 Minute Plan for Increasing Your Fundraising by 100% this Year

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A number of years ago, while serving as the Executive Director of a non-profit, I faced a crisis. I had come on board 4 months before and could tell the ship was sinking.  Most of the staff was gone, the bookkeeping was a mess, reports weren’t filed.  Luckily, we had a small reserve of annual […]

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Non-Profit Fundraising Isn’t Just for Fundraisers

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What’s the fundraising culture like at your non-profit? Do you work at an organization where everyone is focused on development… or one where the board tells you to “raise $1 million and come back when you’re done!”? Do you raise money for a non-profit that asks every staff member to help out with fundraising events, […]

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One Big Happy Family

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How do your donors see themselves?  Do they seem in “awe” of your program staff, or thank your staff for the work they are doing when they meet them at events?  Do your donors say things like, “I’m just glad to be able to help out… you guys (the program staff) are doing the real […]

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How to Get a Pay Raise at Your Non-Profit

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I’m about to cause some trouble. That’s because I am about to tell you that if you work in fundraising or management for a non-profit, you can – and should – ask for a raise this year.  And, best of all, I’m going to tell you how to go about getting that raise.  Why?  Because […]

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3 Things You Must Give Your Board if You Want Them to Succeed with Fundraising

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Every non-profit wants to have a board of directors that is enthusiastic and capable when it comes to fundraising. Yet so many organizations are disappointed with their board members’ fundraising efforts. Likewise, many board members I have spoken with want to be better fundraisers, but just don’t know how. I have found that there are […]

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Surprising Reasons Why Your Non-Profit Isn’t Raising More Money

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A lot of non-profits that I work with feel like they’re doing “the right things” when it comes to fundraising.  They are learning new strategies and tactics, trying to build relationships, and working hard to supercharge their events and other activities.  Yet, they’re still not raising the money they need to thrive. Over time, I […]

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The 5 Immutable Laws of Great Non-Profit Fundraising

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Much of fundraising is an art, not a science.  Knowing when a prospect is ripe for an ask, or how to craft a case for support that really tugs on the heartstrings take experience and practice.  There are, however, several immutable, undeniable laws of great fundraising that are so very essential to the process that […]

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The 3 Goals of Your Donor Stewardship Program

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Every non-profit understands the goal for its donor prospecting program: meet new people and get them to make a donation. Getting that first check is the primary purpose of everything your fundraising staff does after meeting a new prospective donor. Yet, many organizations aren’t quite as certain what their goals are after that first gift […]

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How to Move Ahead in Your Non-Profit Development Career

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In today’s article, I want to diverge from discussing fundraising strategy for a moment to talk about something just as important, if not more so.  Let’s talk about you! If you’re like me, you work for or with non-profits because you believe in the good that they can do.  You’re working for your organization because […]

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