5 Tips to Being Persistent in Outreach to Major Donors
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Greg Warner
1d ago
Far too many gift officers and other fundraisers give up too easily when they don’t get a positive response from their donor prospects. Persistence pays dividends. This is true in the sales world and in the fundraising world. In fact, it’s true in life. In just about any scenario where someone wants something, it’s the people who persist in continuing to try, push open doors, get noticed, get called back, land a meeting, get interviews, or keep trying in whatever the context who eventually succeed. Why would fundraising be any different? There are several roadblocks to getting responses from ..read more
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The Way You Fundraise Matters
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Jim Langley
1w ago
There are lots of ways to fundraise. All of them can be said to work in some ways but the way you fundraise: Determines the kind of donor you attract The level of giving you command The degree of importance donors assign to your cause The image that you create for your organization The level of trust that does or does not accrue to your organization Whether you build community or let it erode The quality of the advancement practitioners that you attract or repel, or keep or let slip away Most fundraising raises funds but does not inspire or motivate donors to give their most or dedicate a s ..read more
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Understanding Wealthy Donors – 3 Truths Every Gift Officer Needs to Know
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Greg Warner
1w ago
There’s a chasm in major gifts fundraising. It lies between the wealthy donors who often make up over 80% of your giving base (sometimes over 90%), and the gift officers and fundraising teams who reach out to them and interact with them. While the wealthy donors may have seven, eight, or even nine figures in net worth, the people from your organization who are trying to build relationships with them tend to have far less. This makes it hard to relate to each other. And it’s even harder if the fundraisers make incorrect assumptions about their wealthy prospects and donors. Why Understanding Yo ..read more
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Fundraising’s Worst Oversimplification
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Jim Langley
2w ago
Fundraising’s worst oversimplification is: “People give because they’re asked.” That’s like saying those who agree to marry do so simply “because they were asked.” Yes, a proposal may produce an affirmative response but how many people get married and stay married simply because the other person asked repeatedly, relentlessly, persuasively, aggressively, or cleverly? Does not the marriage proposal, no matter how charming or disarming, pale in comparison to the process that precedes it, the process that allows both parties to explore the potential of shared values and interests, and then concl ..read more
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What Gift Officers Should Put in Their LinkedIn Experience Section
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Greg Warner
2w ago
If you’ve read our other posts about LinkedIn, you understand that the point of your LinkedIn profile is not to get a job. You have a job. As a gift officer, the best use of your profile is to appeal to your major donor prospects. Your LinkedIn experience section is the place to demonstrate your expertise in the field of philanthropy, with the goal of solidifying the trust and confidence a potential donor will feel about working with you. From our other posts, you have already learned how to upgrade your LinkedIn headline, and what to write in your LinkedIn about section. Now, let’s look at w ..read more
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The Most Important Fundraising Metric: The 20-Year Relationship
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Jim Langley
3w ago
When we conduct our Vital Signs Assessment, looking for indicators of fundraising success or struggle ahead, one data point stands out far more than any others – the number of donors who have given 20 years or more. The greater the number of donors in that cohort, the more probable it is that that organization will: Secure their largest gifts in any given year from them (gifts of $1 million or more are most likely to come from those who have given 17 years or more) Benefit from their estate plans (the most likely significant estate givers are ones who have given for 20 years or more) Be the ..read more
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Why Organizations That Institute the Greatest Demands for Accountability Perform So Poorly
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Greg Warner
3w ago
For the most part, everyone agrees that metrics are good. Accountability is good – even for major gift officers. Generally speaking, measuring what you do improves performance and results. But here’s the rub when it comes to fundraising metrics – it matters very much which accountability metrics you use. Use the wrong ones, and your fundraising revenue will start trending the other way. One study looked at 24 different accountability metrics used by 210 large charities. Most of these metrics were the ones you use to monitor small dollar donations. The study found that using small-dollar metri ..read more
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Don’t Just “Find” Donors; Build Relationships for Lasting Impact
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Jim Langley
1M ago
“Where do we find donors?” I’m asked that question quite a bit. To begin, let’s make sure we check all assumptions at the door. Donors don’t come ready-made. The best way to find a donor is to discover those who have a history of supporting a cause or purpose similar to yours. Your best chance of engaging them is to have someone broker a connection or write them a compelling note with these points: We have a history of doing what you care about We do it well – here are some proof points We now see an opportunity to make a greater difference May we meet so we can lay out exactly how we see th ..read more
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31 Donor Discovery Strategies That Sincerely Engage Wealthy Supporters
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Greg Warner
1M ago
Prospect research, RFM, wealth screeners, and other hands-off/arm’s-length methods of donor discovery can only work so well. And more often than not, the people they identify turn out to not be viable candidates for major gifts. In fact, we’ve written about five popular donor discovery methods that fail more than they succeed, and leave gaping holes in your organization’s fundraising that gift officers must struggle to fill. There is a better way. The best strategies for donor discovery are about engagement. The way to know if a person is interested in your mission is to give them opportuniti ..read more
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Revolutionize Fundraising: Let’s Stop Making it Uncomfortable
MarketSmart, LLC | Weekly Nonprofit Marketing Tips
by Jim Langley
1M ago
If something about fundraising makes you uncomfortable, it isn’t because there’s something wrong with you but because there’s something wrong with the way you’re fundraising, or being expected to. Fundraising should be as easy as asking a friend to hang out. Chances are they’ll say yes, if not when you ask, then somewhere down the road. It’s not a matter of if but when. Of course, fundraising is not about you personally but the cause you represent. The request is not to hang out but to help. Still, that should be entirely comfortable if: You know they are philanthropic They have a strong aff ..read more
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