Get on the “Ask, Thank, Report, Repeat Cycle” with Agents of Good

How do you split your time between the various fundraising activities in your annual fund?

Do you spend more time asking, thanking or reporting?

My friends at Agents of Good, Jen Love and John Lepp, spend a lot of time talking about this in their quest to promote #donorlove throughout the sector.

I had the honor of hosting them as the keynoters for the AFP Central PA conference a few years back (that’s us on their fabulous tour of Hershey’s Chocolate World). While in town, they penned this great, short blog post which really narrows in on where we should be spending our time (HINT: you’re probably not spending enough time on that last part). Check it out now.

Grant Calendar Template [free download]

Have you ever missed a grant deadline? 

Or maybe more likely, a close out report deadline? 

It’s easy to do. What’s the secret to avoiding it? 

Get everything all in one place and check it regularly (monthly, if not weekly).  Give our FREE Grant Calendar Template a download and make it your own.

[click to immediately download to your computer]

How to Raise $5,050 More at Your Fundraising Event

How to Raise $5,050 More at Your Fundraising Event

Would like to raise $5,050 more at your organization’s next event?

Are you tired of running all over town picking up donated gift cards for your silent auction which don’t even sell for face value?

Then try a wishboard at your next event and raise more money with less effort.

So, what’s a wishboard?

A wishboard is a stand alone donation board. It consists of 100 spaces where event attendees can make a donation to the organization in any amount from $1 to $100. Once a board is filled the organization has raised $5,050 in contributions.

Typically, wishboard supporters will also support other event fundraising opportunities (e.g. silent and live auction). The wishboard amounts are small. Because of this, wishboard support is often given in addition to other contributions.

Wishboards are an easy way to get more revenue from your event with minimal effort from staff and volunteers.

Here’s a sample of what one looks like …

How does it work?


Adding a wishboard to your next event is quite simple. Here are the steps …

1) Select a specific project or program for which to fundraise (this works far better than unrestricted operating support as it’s something your organization is “wishing for” but does not currently have the funds to purchase);

2) Have a wishboard designed (we can help with this);

3) Decide how the board will be displayed/featured;

4) Assign staff or volunteers to the wishboard at the event and make sure they are trained on what to say (“Would you like to sponsor a few spots on our wishboard? It’s funding ______________.”);

5) Make the purchase process as seamless as possible (Are you using names or bidder numbers? Can they pay instantly via credit card?);

6) Capture contact information so you can follow up after the event to say thank you and keep in touch with them.

How do I make it happen?

You now know everything you need to know in order to add a wishboard to your next event.

Your designer and printer can easily create a wishboard for you.

But to make it even easier, we offer custom wishboards shipped to your door in 3 weeks for just $150 plus tax. If you fill the board that’s $4,900 for your organization after the expense of the board.

Ready to place your order? Let’s get started.

Lynne Wester’s Stewardship Report Swap

Do you need to write a donor update or annual report?  Do you want to do something different but are feeling uninspired?

Well, today I share my go to source … Lynne Wester, the Donor Relations Guru.

Lynne conducts the annual Stewardship Report Swap.  This year she and her team received over 1,800 pages of stewardship report samples. These samples include endowment reports, customized top donor reports, annual reports, videos, websites, and more.  Lynne beautifully combines and categorizes them and then puts them out to the fundraising community for free.  Check them out (and her … she’s sassy fun and amazing … she was the first to coin the term “thask”).

How to Get Donors to Read Your Email Newsletter

We all send emails to our constituents. We all send emails out keep in touch and say “Here’s what’s going on with your support” or “Here’s what we want you to know about us.” But how to we title those emails?

So many organizations, simply title them “e-newsletter from ABC Charity.” That doesn’t excite me. That doesn’t make me want to open it.

What’s the average open rate for a non-profit email? Statistics range from 15 to 25% on average. That means only 15% of your donors actually even open your email, let alone read them. So you have to do something to excite them. You have to make it fun.

So put IMPACT in that subject line. Impact. Impact is what we need in there. So, something like “Because of you, Johnny had a place to sleep last night” or “Without you, this wouldn’t happen.” Or even a little bit of shock and awe or a cliffhanger like “Martha doesn’t have a solution…”

That’s the way we get our emails opened. Can you do a better job of titling your emails?

Monthly Donor Conversion Request Template

You’ve probably read the articles hyping the benefits of monthly giving. The key benefit for me is that the retention rate for monthly donors is somewhere in the 85% range (depending on the source), as opposed to the 45% average of all US charities (FEP, 2018). But how do you actually get monthly donors?

You can send out email blasts, you can include buck slips in your mailings, you can put a link on your homepage — these tactics will get you an occasional new monthly donor. But how do you really put some momentum behind this. The answer is simple: you ask, personally.

I’ve found with my clients that reaching out one to one with a personal request works best. I call the letter a win-win letter. It tells the benefits of monthly giving for both the organization and the donor. But the real key to making it work is personalization. It is a hand-signed letter. It has a note on it. It comes in a hand-addressed and stamped envelope. It looks like personal correspondence, because it is.

That’s how you get your request opened and get donors to respond. That’s how you get more monthly donors.

And finally, here’s what you came for: @fundraiserchad‘s monthly donor conversion request template. It’s free … give it a download today!

 

Steven Screen’s 3 Things to Become Great At

Are you familiar with Steven Screen’s work? If not, you should be. He’s a fundraising direct mail ninja and partner at The Better Fundraising Co. Steven is always publishing insightful blog articles that cut right to the chase and explain what needs to be done for fundraising success.

Here’s a great recent example: “The Three Things to Become Great At.” Check it out and show him some love.

Donor Touch Point Listing

So we all know that we should contact our donors more frequently, but not by asking. However, in the middle of trying to tackle our 172 item to do list it’s hard to be creative and come up with those outreach ideas that engage donors and make our organization stand out from the crowd.

Fear not, here are @fundraiserchad‘s top 25 ideas for reaching out to donors that don’t involve yet another ask. It’s free … give it a download today!

Lori Jacobwith’s 7 Rules of Storytelling

Lori Jacbowith is the Queen of Nonprofit Storytelling. I’ve seen her live and in action as she trains fundraisers (which I highly recommend). She can teach anyone to tell a better story which creates interest and moves donors closer to action … sometimes in as few as 6 words!

Here are her 7 Rules of Storytelling in an expertly produced infographic. Check it out … this is one area where we can always improve!

5 Steps to Smarter Fundraising

5 Steps to Smarter Fundraising

Are you confused about where to start with fundraising? Are you overwhelmed with all of the options out there? Are you ready to focus and see better results?

Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to use every possible fundraising technique. In fact, you will do better if you don’t. But where should you focus your effort?

Download this FREE GUIDE by @fundraiserchad: “Five Steps to Smarter Fundraising” for the answer.