Posts Tagged "Development for Conservation"

Is Your Acknowledgement Process like a Torn Seat Cover?

Posted by on Mar 21, 2017 in Communication, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Is Your Acknowledgement Process like a Torn Seat Cover?

Is Your Acknowledgement Process like a Torn Seat Cover?

Picture this: Small land trust organization, but large enough to have staff. Executive Director is terrific but does everything and lives some miles away. Sometimes works from home and is often out of the office. Part-time Administrative Assistant (AA) – 15 hours a week. No other staff. AA picks up the mail twice a week from the post office and separates out the envelopes that obviously contain checks. Those envelopes will need to be opened in the presence of a second individual. They go into a locked file drawer. Most weeks, on Friday, the AA is joined by a volunteer. Any checks not...

Read More

Sometimes, It’s the Little Things: When Numbers Matter

Posted by on Feb 28, 2017 in Board Development, Featured | 2 comments

Sometimes, It’s the Little Things: When Numbers Matter

“I’m just not a numbers person. I’m so glad someone on our board understands all that stuff!” Sound familiar? Do you have a board member who says this or something similar? Several? The majority? You may be hurting your organization in unseen ways by allowing this seemingly little thing to go unchallenged. This post is about why it matters how much your board understands, how it relates to fundraising, and something very practical you can do about it. Let’s start with Jerry Panas. In 1984, Jerold Panas published a seminal book on fundraising called Mega Gifts: Who Gives Them, Who Gets Them....

Read More

The Case for Membership

Posted by on Feb 21, 2017 in Featured, Membership | Comments Off on The Case for Membership

The Case for Membership

I’ve never really understood organizations that do not use the word “membership.” Why not? What wrong with that word? It implies an obligation that lasts longer than a year. Yeah. I want that. Think about it. In a perfect world, non-profits would enjoy consistent and stable community support. Individual donors might make a first gift, a second gift (first renewal), multiple unrestricted gifts on some sort of predictable schedule, episodic major gifts restricted to support specific programs or projects, and a bequest gift at the end of their life. The person who enters this type of...

Read More

Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

Posted by on Feb 14, 2017 in Development Audit, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Plans and Budgets, Staff Development, Uncategorized | Comments Off on Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

Strategic Planning for Fundraising: Start with the Goal!

If you keep doing what you’ve always done, you’ll keep getting what you’ve always gotten. Why are we doing this event? Because we did it last year. Why do we send out an appeal letter in October? Because that’s what we’ve always done. Why are our $250 donors called “Patrons”? Why do we host an annual golf tournament? Why do we write notes on renewal letters? Someone wise once told me that every once in a while, instead of trying to climb faster or smarter or more efficiently, it’s important to step back and make sure your ladder is still leaning on the right wall. I’ve written about this...

Read More

Stop Shooting Yourself in the Foot: Three Common Practices that Undermine Fundraising

Posted by on Feb 7, 2017 in Communication, Development Audit, Donor Cultivation, Featured, Membership, Plans and Budgets, Uncategorized | 1 comment

Stop Shooting Yourself in the Foot: Three Common Practices that Undermine Fundraising

This weeks’ post is about shooting yourself in the foot. And in each case, the cause is related to an overreaction to a complaint. Worse, sometimes the person complaining is someone internal to the organization and who therefore should know better.   Life Memberships (and other forms of “discount” memberships) When I first started working for The Nature Conservancy, the organization offered Life Membership to people who contributed $1,000 or more. The logic was that membership came with a minimum gift of $15 and $1,000 therefore represented nearly 70 years’ worth. That same logic...

Read More