Capital Campaigns for the 21st Century

Capital campaigns are a mainstay in nonprofit fundraising. There’s something special about a time-limited, specific goal like a capital campaign. It gets us motivated to give generously and accomplishes results we can see and touch. But things are changing. For starters, in our smartphone saturated world we have many more options to connect with donors. […]

A true disruption in fundraising

We often hear people claim they’re going to “disrupt” an industry, even fundraising. “This will change everything,” they promise. And the implied threat is that you’d better adapt or get left behind. They are usually selling a website or an app that is supposed to take away your fundraising woes. Usually by making you sell […]

[Guest Post] 3 Surprising Things I Learned From Making Recurring Donations to 115 Nonprofits

Monthly giving is important for nonprofits. But are we doing it well? To test, Brady Josephson ran an experiment involving giving to 115 nonprofits. And I’m honored that he agreed to write about his findings. Brady is the Vice President of Innovation and Optimization at NextAfter – a fundraising research lab. No stranger to nonprofits […]

Digital Fundraising + Social Media: Your Guide to Raising More

If you’ve been paying attention to recent trends in philanthropic giving, you’ve probably noticed that digital fundraising and online giving have become more and more popular among donors. But how can you make this trend work for you? Digital fundraising never stops innovating and changing, so how can you know what the best options are? […]

Are you telling the RIGHT story in your fundraising?

Steven Screen is at it again. Steven is an amazing direct mail and fundraising expert. And he has a way of making me feel uncomfortable. He says the best story for raising money is the “incomplete story.” You see, when I write fundraising letters, my first reaction is to tell the prospect what a good […]

Happy (Fiscal) New Year |

Years ago, I recorded this “Thank you for fundraisers.” I wanted to get it out early this year to give you the extra “umpf” to push through these last few days of the fiscal year. (If your fiscal year ends in June!) Thanks for your hard work. Our world is better because of the persistence […]

3 Things to Stop Doing in Your Thank You’s to Donors

I just returned from a training where I got to hear Mary Cahalane teach on writing good thank you letters. Studies estimate that 53% of donors who stop giving to a nonprofit stop due to the nonprofit’s lack of communication. 53%! When donors don’t hear from us, they think we no longer need their gifts. […]

Will you take the Red Pen Challenge with your fundraising letters?

Fundraising is a counter-intuitive profession. But it is a profession. Experts research fundraising tactics and test strategies to find out what works. Often, the results seem illogical. Like is the case in writing fundraising letters that actually raise money. The We/I Test In our fundraising letters, we typically think our job is to convince donors […]

Are you making a specific fundraising offer or reverting to “join us”?

I recently wrote about the importance of your fundraising offer. This post has gotten more response from readers than most. And it’s captured the attention of my private coaching clients so much of them are actively working on being more intentional about crafting offers. Are you educating or engaging? The biggest struggle seems to be […]

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