To most college students, the idea of working in the Middle East after graduation wouldn’t be appealing. But Laura was up for the adventure. That choice led her to a career in nonprofit communications and inspired her to turn entrepreneur.
Phoenix fundraiser Terri Shoemaker and marketer Virginia Treviño knew there had to be an easier way for nonprofits to get donor mailings done.
When nature called, Brianna Klink de Ruiz found her calling. Bri was a college student, waiting to pick up her boyfriend outside a computer science lab at the University of Washington. But she couldn’t wait any longer to visit the ladies room.
Research suggests that many fundraisers today rely on email to get to their fundraising goals. But ignoring actual donor behavior and response rates is dangerous. It’s like using the cheap sunscreen on a 110-degree day.
I’ve been thinking about how spicy, vital causes like yours go with the bland, safe option when they write. Should we blame legal? Tempting. How about the curse of multiple editors? That certainly doesn’t help. But the fact is that sometimes we feel too busy to be creative. Here’s some inspiration.
It doesn’t matter whether your nonprofit is in Arizona or Abuja. The one audience that seems to vex us the most is donors. How can we keep up with what donors are thinking and tell them stories that will inspire them to give? Thinking through your “buyer journey” is a good place to start. Here’s how.
Nonprofits naturally have amazing stories to tell about lives saved, challenges overcome, heart-breaking sacrifice and huge needs that diverse communities are rallying to meet. So why is so much of our writing DEAD BORING. Understanding how journalists decide if something is worthy to print, can help change that.
Nonprofits love to save money. Relying on low-cost digital tools like email and social media is a great way to do that. But nonprofits also need people to read and respond to their communications. And research shows that’s getting harder for some nonprofits to achieve online. Get the solution.
As I moved up the nonprofit ladder, I started a one-woman campaign against print. If there was no proof of ROI, I destroyed it and sometimes recreated it in digital form. But now I know that when print and email get together, average response rates soar. That means more money to fund programs and make meaningful change happen.
Perfectionism is on the rise, and that’s not a good thing. Psychologists believe this irrational desire to succeed may cause mental health issues. If you feel stuck between delusions of perfect grandeur and the fear of being found out, let me offer a solution from my not-so-secret, secret skill: improvisation.
Shakespeare penned the words, “Beware the ides of March,” in his play Julius Caesar. The piece recounts the Roman ruler’s assassination by angry mob and stabbing. I hate to be dramatic, but sometimes being a fundraiser can feel just like that. Here's how to deal with disgruntled donors and still keep your cool.
All too often, the year starts and fundraising planning gives way to crisis control. To help you get out of emergency mode, I’m sharing this nonprofit fundraising plan template – all ready for you to customize. If you’ve ever wondered how to write a successful fundraising plan, this is a great start.
Three out of four nonprofits admit they use social media to talk about their events, their activities and their needs. In doing so, they miss the true purpose of social media. Find out why now is a good time for nonprofits to rethink their social media strategies.
Vanity metrics are rarely correlated to real outcomes, like increasing donations so you can provide more meals to people in need. Your nonprofit’s mission is why you exist. And everything you do, including PR, should contribute to that mission in some way.
Some 52 percent of all websites use Google Analytics. But few of the nonprofits I’ve worked for have this free tool installed. And even fewer use the data to guide decision making.
This condition could eventually be fatal. Here’s why.
Truly successful fundraising, the kind that builds a relationship and earns repeat donations, runs on data. A good database can tell you exactly who to mail, what to mail them and when they’re most likely to give a donation. It’s time to leave Access and Excel behind—without breaking the bank or your back.
I’ve based all of my successful fundraising strategy around emotion backed up by logic, not the other way around. But now I know there are specific times when the exact opposite is true. Just don’t forget to back up your ask with a great impact story and fantastic stewardship.
As a nonprofit writer, there are moments that feel like being an NFL linebacker – taking the hits play after play. Don’t let your storytelling get sidelined by confusing plays and poor sportsmanship. Here are 5 things you can do to take some of the pain out of nonprofit communications.
New fundraisers are often surprised at how mentally challenging the job can be. To avoid burnout, it’s up to you to convince the boss that you need some outside muscle. Here’s how to go about that and not get burned.
If there’s one thing I’ve learned in 20 years of nonprofit fundraising it’s this: if you want to be successful at the job, you have to own it. No one is going to give you millions of dollars unless you’re fully committed. Here are 9 signs you might just be a fundraiser after all.