Category: donor-management

TikTok's Lessons for Nonprofits: The Power of Authenticity and Engagement

Curious about the phenomenon behind TikTok's rise? Explore how your nonprofit can leverage its principles of authenticity and engagement to heighten impact. Plus, learn about Gather Voices, an innovative tool that empowers nonprofits to harness the authenticity of user-generated videos. Read on to uncover the secrets of digital storytelling in a rapidly evolving landscape.

Top 10 Tips on How to keep your Monthly Donors

Inside Look... This guide will cover the following topics: Keep the Value of Monthly Donors Top of Mind Don’t Keep Your Monthly Donors Waiting. Steward them early! Be as Committed to Your Monthly Donors as They are to YOU ACT Before Monthly Donors Leave Add Credit Card Account Updater Encourage Electronic Funds Transfers Test Call Your Organization Ensure You and Your Staff are Passionate about Monthly Giving Review Your Join and Retention Processes Look at Your Numbers Introduction! “FIGHT TILL THE LAST GASP.” — William Shakespeare, Henry VI

Free Nonprofit Webinar! How to Build Your Major Donor Portfolio

Free Nonprofit Webinar: How to Build Your Major Donor Portfolio 0:00 Oh, and I should add in any size, fundraising shop. So we promise we're not going to take questions, questions, per se, but I just want to get a feel for the kind of who's on the webinar. So if you can just type into the questions box, What percentage of your funding stream relies on major donors? 0:20 If you just want to type that in, What percentage of your funding stream relies on major donors? 0:30 Alright, and while you're typing that in, I'm gonna get started with a little bit about who I am. I'm your topic expert, as Marcella said, Robin.

Best practices for recognizing, thanking and retaining monthly donors

This is probably one of the most common questions I get whenever I’m presenting a webinar or an in-person session or workshop: “How do I best recognize, thank, cultivate and retain my monthly donors?” That’s why I’ve put together some common best practices. Of course, every organization is different, but most of these are very easy to implement. They don’t cost a lot of money and certainly they don’t take up a lot of your time. The more you can do and prepare before you launch your next monthly donor appeal, the better off you are. Here are three very important things to remember: The more you do in the Recognition, Thanking and Cultivation stage, the higher your monthly donor Retention....

Step-By-Step Stewardship | Donor Retention Strategies That Work!

01 | Introduction Clients, people who read my blogs and newsletters, and those who participate in my training all know that I firmly believe that philanthropy starts with gratitude. Alas, that is the one thing that seems to always get lost. I think of gratitude as “And then?” — those actions that happen after a person says yes. It’s what you do once the gift is given. THESE ARE DONOR RETENTION STRATEGIES AND THEY ARE CRITICAL FOR KEEPING YOUR DONORS HAPPY. Keeping donors happy is just plain good sense. A happy donor is likely to become a donor again. And again. Unhappy donors, however, are likely to become lapsed donors. That is the 60% or so of donors who never make a second gift to an...

How To Create A Storyteller System That Inspires Action

Inside Look | This guide will cover the following topics: 01 Introduction 02 Outline Your Nonprofit Storytelling Ambassador Plan 03The 6 Best Types of Stories for Nonprofits to Share 04 Conclusion 01 Introduction What is nonprofit storytelling, what does it do, and what does it matter for your nonprofit? Storytelling should be actionable - inspiring listeners or readers to take an action on your behalf, whether your goal is to get more members, donations, event attendees etc. It should also make readers want to share the story with others. Let me start with two scenarios. SCENARIO 1: You receive a dry-form letter in the mail from a breast cancer research charity that bought your name from...

Ask a Nonprofit Expert – Answers to 7 Questions about Starting a Monthly Donor Program NOW.

As a follow up to the recent free webinar ‘7 Reasons why you should start a monthly donor program NOW’, we’re happy to share the answers to some of the questions we didn’t have a chance to answer during the webinar. These are very short answers of course. But feel free to contact Erica Waasdorp at if you have any additional questions or join her in one of the upcoming advanced monthly donor webinars. Question: Do you recommend that we set up a specific donor web form for monthly gifts? Yes, absolutely. Ideally, you’ll have at least two web forms. One that has one-time and recurring, one form that offers monthly only. When you’re promoting monthly giving and you ask...

Ask a Nonprofit Expert – Beyond Virtual Facilitation: How to Maximize Engagement and Tackle Wicked Problems in Your Virtual Meeting

We’ve joined with a number of our nonprofit experts to bring you blog posts that will help answer some of your nonprofits toughest questions. In this post, nonprofit expert Caliopy Glaros answers some questions that came from nonprofit professionals during her last free live webinar with us “Beyond Virtual Facilitation: How to Maximize Engagement and Tackle Wicked Problems in Your Virtual Meetings“. See Caliopy’s answers below, and check out all of her webinars with CharityHowTo. Question: How is facilitating meetings among millennials and young professionals different when they seem afraid or powerless to share? Hierarchies and office dynamics can affect people’s participation in a virtual...

Ask a Nonprofit Expert – How to Budget In Crisis

We’ve joined with a number of our nonprofit experts to bring you blog posts that will help answer some of your nonprofits toughest questions. In this post, nonprofit expert Cherian Koshy answers some questions that came from nonprofit professionals during his last live webinar with us “How to Budget In Crisis“. See Cherian’s answers below, and check out all of his webinars with CharityHowTo here. Question: One of our challenges is forecasting revenue when we are trying new ideas and there is pushback on committing to underlying assumptions. Should we budget in a range, or just nail down a baseline scenario, etc…? If we don’t commit to any forecasting, we can’t make any decisions. Answer:...

The Most Effective Direct Mail Packs for Nonprofits | CharityHowTo

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp I hope you were convinced from one of my earlier blogs that direct mail for nonprofits is still the most effective way to generate donations from your existing donors and generate new donors. The next question you might ask yourselves then is how often and how can you best reach out to your donors, so they’ll be most likely to respond. Let’s start with how often you can reach out to your donors, so they’ll continue to love you. It’s always one of my favorite questions to ask at a webinar: How often do you send appeals to your donors now? Sadly, most nonprofits are not reaching out to their donors enough! I typically see many who answer once or twice a year. Only...

5 Ways to Add a Monthly Giving Ask to Your Appeals | CharityHowTo

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp If you’ve heard me speak or have read some of my blogs, you already know that I always advocate for the following: The more opportunities you offer donors to give monthly, the more monthly donors you will find! But for most organizations, there is always that fine line of having to bring in one-time short-term funds versus long-term sustainable monthly giving revenue. I get it. Trust me, I’ve been there. Let’s start with a Monthly Giving Case study Let me tell you when that short-term focus changed for a big organization where I was managing the monthly donor program. Every year, we created a budget to be able to do so many appeals to generate new monthly giving...

Five Steps to Prepare for Your Nonprofit’s First Capital Campaign

Capital campaigns are one of the most extensive campaigns that an organization will ever undertake. In most cases, an organization needs to fund capital purchases, upgrades, and/or renovations and repairs. Given their highly episodic nature, organizations that are seeking to undergo a capital campaign must do so with foresight and preparation geared to success. The most critical steps are taken before even the actual capital campaign plan is drafted and far before an actual solicitation happens. Organizations that are embarking on their first-ever campaign or who have not undergone such intensive efforts in a while would be wise to take heed of the following preparatory steps to ensure...

Segmentation is the key to your nonprofits direct mail success

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp

Why Donor Appreciation is Crucial This Time of Year!

Guest blog post by: Margaret Battistelli Gardner A special holiday poem (with great apologies to Clement Clarke Moore and Henry Livingston Jr., each of whom was credited at different times with writing the original “Twas the Night Before Christmas”) ‘Twas a few days before year-end and all through the land Nonprofits were scrambling to put out a hand. Donors’ mail and inboxes were stuffed to the hilt With asks and appeals and a wee touch of guilt. Fundraisers were huddled, awaiting the cash, Ignoring, just maybe, they’d been a bit crass. These donors, they knew, keep them sustained And deserve so much more than the same old refrain. When out of the slush pile arose something new – A note...

Using a Match to Increase Your Nonprofits Monthly Giving Success

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp

How To Create a Nonprofit Event Budget | CharityHowTo

Get a Grip on Nonprofit Event Budgets Creating Budgets and Cutting Costs Nonprofit event budgets are as unique as snowflakes, and just as elusive to pin down! Whether a gala, festival, or house party, organizations need to understand how to create a nonprofit event budget in order to successfully plan and execute their events.

How To Set Up Your Nonprofit’s Website For Monthly Giving

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp

How to Grow Your Monthly Giving Program from Good to GREAT

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp

Drink Your Own Kool-Aid…Start Monthly Giving to Your Own Nonprofit

This past week I heard this expression several times, so I wanted to explain why it’s especially important when it comes to monthly giving. Let me start with the Wikipedia definition: “Drinking the Kool-Aid” is an expression commonly used in the United States that refers to a person who believes in a possibly doomed or dangerous idea because of perceived potential high rewards.”

Direct Mail For Nonprofits – The Number One Thing To Consider Before Sending Your Next Campaign

Blog post by Erica Waasdorp

How to Ask for Donations Face to Face for Your Nonprofit

This is a guest post by Brian Saber Most fundraising professionals would prefer to do just about anything than ask someone for money face-to-face. Even for those who find it somewhat “easy,” it can be awkward and anxiety-inducing to ask for money, regardless of how good your cause is. Yet, deep down, we know asking for donations face to face for your nonprofit will end up making a huge impact… and the facts back that up. Asking in-person is proven to have the highest rate of success among all methods. Kent Dove of the Indiana University Foundation analyzed different ways of giving. Direct mail has the lowest success rate of the traditional fundraising methods –just 1-2%. Phone calls – not...

How a Monthly Donor Program Can Drastically Increase Your Nonprofit’s Revenue

This is a guest post by Erica Waasdorp

What Can Your Nonprofit Offer in Exchange For Corporate Sponsorship?

This is a guest post by Simon Scriver Are you looking to bring on more large sponsors for your nonprofit? Great! Once you’ve identified the partners that you’d like to ask to for a corporate sponsorship, it’s time to consider how to provide great value in return for your ask. Before reaching out to the company, ask yourself… what does this company really want? Below is a list of ways you can create a win-win situation for corporate partners. Feel Good Factor Show them what will they achieve (not what your organization is doing…but what will be achieved because of them). They should feel part of the winning team. Connect them directly to your beneficiaries and your work through meetings,...

How Long Does it Take to Set Up a Monthly Donor Program?

This is a guest blog post by Erica Waasdorp How long does it typically take to set up a monthly donor program? From soup to nuts. At a recent webinar, I was asked the above question. The answer is: if you focus on it, you should be able to be up and running within a week. I realize that development people in small to mid-size organizations especially are always pulled in multiple directions and distractions are easy. That’s why I recommend you don’t launch the program until you have thought through and put in place the basics. But with a little bit of focus that can be done in a few days. You most likely have the systems already in place. Brainstorming about a name for a program can be done...

5 Tips and Strategies for a Better Nonprofit Fundraising Event

This post was a collaborative piece written by John Haydon, A.j. Steinberg, and Jeff Brooks.

Major Gift Fundraising is Like Dating – 4 Steps to Success

This a guest blog post by Kathie Kramer Ryan, founder of Arroyo Fundraising Would you ask someone to marry you on your first date? Chances are, no way! It’s just as unlikely that you—as a development professional—would ask a prospect to make a major gift to your organization during your first meeting. If you are planning or implementing a major gifts program, it’s a great time to review these 4 Steps to Fundraising Success. Step #1: Identify First, you’ll want to identify prospects who have the potential to become donors to your organization. Prospects may include friends and colleagues of your current donors, board members, committee members and other stakeholders. Consider former board...