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Five Questions Every Board Member Needs to Ask about Fundraising

Ask practically any executive director or development professional what they want most from their board of directors and you’re all but certain to hear “Help with fundraising!” It’s the nonprofit cri de coeur.

Such help will be more forthcoming if before recruiting a board candidate you encourage him or her to ask the five telling questions listed below. 


Mobile Bidding: 6 Questions Every Nonprofit Needs to Ask

When it comes to nonprofit fundraising, charity auctions are one of the events organizations turn to again and again. However, even though these events have been a staple of nonprofit fundraising, many organizations fail to realize they could be getting more from these events.


The SMART Way to Create Fundraising Goals

If you’re looking to increase donations for your nonprofit organization, your first move will be to improve the fundraising goals you set for your organization. Most nonprofits have fundraising goals, but not all goals are created equal. In 1981, an article by George Doran, There’s a S.M.A.R.T. Way to Write Management’s Goals and Objectives, appeared in Management Review. It outlined a five-part method for creating smart objectives that is now used in many industries for project management.


5 Ways to Demonstrate Progress Toward Your Nonprofit’s Goal

Most nonprofits have a single, lofty goal that they’re relentlessly pursuing, whether it’s curing a disease or ending childhood hunger. While your ultimate goal is most likely why your supporters came to you in the first place, it can be difficult to keep up momentum when your lofty goal feels far away. 

To keep supporters engaged on the long path toward your goal, there are several ways you  can connect with your community through your nonprofit’s blog, email newsletters, social media, and other platforms. Complex problems have complicated solutions, but when you show how you’re delivering on your mission even before you reach the finish line, your supporters will be there with you every step of the way. 


5 Tips for Asking for a Major Philanthropic Gift

You’re about to step up and speak to your supporters at your organization’s annual fundraising gala. You’re about to issue a “call for cash”—asking attendees to give anywhere from $1,000 to $25,000 more. 

Last year, the gala’s donations fell shy of the targets, so the pressure is on. How do you ask for a major philanthropic gift in a way that makes your supporters eager to play a huge part in your organization’s success? 


Sustainability through Innovation: Taking a Fresh Look at Old Problems

Sustainability through Innovation: Taking a Fresh Look at Old ProblemsDon’t you hate it when you have donors (or potential donors) who are not supporting your efforts to the extent you believe their passion would indicate?  They’ve expressed support, maybe even enthusiasm, for your mission, and yet their financial gifts don’t reflect the same level of engagement.


*Every* Nonprofit Leader Is a Fundraiser and Marketer

I recently happened upon a thought-provoking article: “Note to All Creatives: Marketing is Your Job,” adapted from Ryan Holiday’s Perennial Seller: The Art of Making and Marketing Work That Lasts. The piece was written with an audience of authors, artists, and start-up entrepreneurs in mind. I firmly believe it applies in spades to nonprofits.

Holiday calls his book a meditation on how to create work that does more than just disappear.


The Crucial Role of Silence When Asking for a Gift

In my book, How to Raise $500 to $5000 from Almost Anyone, I offer a multitude of fundraising how-tos, from identifying prospects to setting a goal to offering meaningful thank-yous. But perhaps the most difficult aspect of soliciting a donor is what I want to focus on here.

By now, we all know the importance of asking a donor for a specific amount—“I’m hoping you’ll be able to join us with a gift of $500.” That’s challenging enough for most of us, but here’s something even harder: asking for a contribution and then remaining silent.


Are You Building Relationships Or Collecting Checks?

On December 31, 2017, I became a statistic.

I joined the 60 percent of donors who become former donors to the charities they had been supporting.


How to Ask Your Campaign Committee Members for Their Gifts

One of the characteristics of most successful capital campaigns is that they ask for gifts from the “top-down, and inside-out.”

That’s shorthand for saying that you’ve got to solicit the people who can give the largest gifts first and the people who have been most involved with your organization and your campaign—that is the campaign committee members and the board.