Hopefully, if you’re reading this post, then we don’t have any more work to do in convincing you that data is important. (If you’re still on the fence, read our blog post on the importance of fundraising data!). But, in order to make sure that your data is doing the work that you need it to do, you have to prioritize keeping it clean.
One of the most important tools in your nonprofit’s fundraising arsenal is your online donation form. This is the last step on the giving ladder and an important part of securing a gift from your supporters. Optimizing your online donation form should be at the top of your nonprofit’s list as you prepare for your next big fundraising campaign. With a streamlined, effective, and inspiring donation form, there’s very little standing in the way between your team and its goals.
Donor research is essential to identify and solicit major prospects! If you’re new to the process, check out this beginner’s guide with tools and resources.
Some of our favorite advice on fundraising is this: Don’t ask your donor to give you their money, instead, offer them an opportunity to be a part of something important.
As your donor base grows, you need more sophisticated methods for managing your events. Let this post guide you through advanced event management strategies!
Finding a connection to a prospective donor, be it an individual, foundation, or corporation can be the first great step toward a fruitful cultivation process. All too often as fundraisers we identify a potential donor whose interests clearly align with the work that we do, who are publicly philanthropic, who believe would make a charitable gift to our organization, if only they knew that we existed and had the opportunity to get to know our mission.
Anyone who has ever organized, worked, or volunteered for a gala knows what an immense amount of work goes in behind the scenes to execute the spectacular celebration that your donors have come to know and love. Luckily, the payoff has the potential to be big—in addition to being a fundraising event, with the right research, you can also use your gala as a moment for donor cultivation and stewardship.
Over the life of your hopefully ongoing relationship with each of your individual donors, there may come a moment (or moments) when it is time to ask them to increase their annual gift to your organization. There are plenty of tools-of-the-trade that you can put to use in this process – for instance, you might adjust the minimum giving levels on the pledge cards you send with annual mailings, or alter the donation levels for your patron program. Ever the proponent of donor research, however, we’d like to suggest a thoughtful and personal approach to securing an increased gift from an annual donor.
Working to develop a relationship with an institutional donor can take hard work and time—sometimes years! — and because of the reporting requirements that many of them have, the hard work doesn’t end when the grant is awarded. So, what can you and your team do to keep your corporate, foundation, and government funders happy—and keep your organization on their roster of grantees? You’ve got to figure out how they tell their story.
Keeping your data clean can be like flossing. You know you should do it, but the benefits are not always short term and it can too easily fall to the bottom of your priority list. However, keeping your data clean can be so important to your fundraising process over the course of the year that we’re here to make the case that it should be the one New Year’s Resolution that you don’t let go by the wayside.
It is undeniable that the development of new technology has revolutionized the way that people donate to charitable organizations. Now, the rising trend of apps and tools for micro-donations makes it possible for people who might not have otherwise considered themselves philanthropists to give money to your cause.
If you manage your organization’s gala or major special events, you’re probably all too familiar with the joys and challenges of working with a small army of volunteers. Volunteers can be a great asset to your organization, they are your advocates and the people who care enough about what you do that they are willing to work for free. While volunteers are filled with a depth of enthusiasm for your organization, other things may take priority in their lives (even at the last minute) over a commitment to your cause, they don’t always show up with the skill set you might need, and you may not have the time or resources to provide in-depth training.