But…How Much Does IT Cost?

But…How Much Does IT Cost?

Nonprofit organizations, as a rule, are very frugal.  Generally, they have to be.  Every dollar counts.  The focus is on providing as much service as possible. So, when they shop for services, the first question they ask is often, “How much does it cost?” It’s at this point that they often unwittingly make a fatal…

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Tricks, Tips Or Treats?

Tricks, Tips or Treats?

Tis’ the season for ghouls, ghosts and monsters.  They’re all around us. From now until the end of the year, each day will bring the day’s fresh raft of fundraising silver-bullets and sure-fire fixes to ace year-end.  Do this, say that.  Mail things in this way.  The definitive plan.  The never fail technique.  Scare the…

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Inviting Versus Pushing

Inviting Versus Pushing

Fundraisers are encouraged to “get close” to their donors and prospective supporters all the time.  They’re pushed to “engage” under the assumption that being proximate is the key to being intimate. There’s even a well-known donor management software that’s just announced an “engagement meter.”  Regardless of how accurate it may or may not be, the…

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Stand-In Metrics

Stand-In Metrics

I hear it everywhere in fundraising.  “What are the metrics?”  “How are we performing against the metrics?” Measurement is good.  Even essential. The trick is to measure the RIGHT things. What is “right”? I’ll take that as the measuring stick that says your fundraising is growing from year to year and is coming from sustainable…

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Seek And You (Won’t) Find

Seek and You (Won’t) Find

Fundraisers are always seeking. The question is, what? Well money, you say. Yes, but. OK, more of it. Yes, but. What far too many fundraisers are seeking is a miracle. The secret method that will eternally fix the problem of "never enough." This is what they will never find, simply because it doesn't exist. What…

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Who’s Out In Front?

Who’s Out in Front?

With any project or undertaking how you organize and deploy your resources has a lot to do with your outcome.   Fundraising is no different.   Getting the right folks out in “front” is essential to success.   Principle 3 of The Eight Principles™ is Leadership Leads™.  Sounds simple, doesn’t it?  And it is easy…

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Bowling Or Tennis?

Bowling or Tennis?

Both bowling and tennis are competitive sports.  Just ask anyone who's serious about either. The question is—when you're fundraising which are you playing.  Bowling or tennis? It's one or the other. What do you mean? Depending on which game you're in, your fundraising program is either growing or remaining static. The basic play in bowling…

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Getting Directions

Getting Directions

In the fundraising world there are many, many talking heads ready to give you directions on how to build the best fundraising program.  For a price.  The “tips and techniques” crowd is pretty darn big.  There are lots of “tips and techniques” to share.   Some of these purveyors of directional wisdom actually have ideas…

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Donors With Good Taste

Donors with Good Taste

We like to think that those who support our cause do so because they see the merit in our work and the positive effect we have in the community we serve. Sorry to break the bubble, but that notion is fiction.  A warm, reassuring fiction, but fiction nonetheless. Principle 1 of The Eight Principles™ is…

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How Can You Create A Memorable Monthly Donor Journey?

How Can You Create a Memorable Monthly Donor Journey?

By: Erica Waasdorp, Eight Principles Fellow, President, A Direct Solution Last year, I attended a workshop at the International Fundraising Congress in Noordwijkerhout, the Netherlands, about creating memorable donor journeys. I really enjoyed the session and I was looking forward to implementing it with some of my clients, especially focused on monthly donors. So, over…

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