Fundraising is focussed on the bottom line. Hard, tangible cash. Facts and figures. Brand is about perception. The heart and mind of the audience. Intangible feelings.
OK, so I’m being purposefully black and white. But everyone of my friends in the sector feels that brand and fundraising teams need to work better together. And with the sector still suffering reputational damage and a new drop in voluntary income, it needs to be all hands to the pump.
And I’ve seen where this happens in perfect harmony. The case for support. I’ve worked on lots of cases for support for very different charities, and they always show me how close communication, brand and fundraising teams actually are, and how well they can work together.
Alexander Scott explains how the case for support is the core story that weaves together brand narrative with need, and the action you want your audience to take.
Everybody wants to run a successful nonprofit, but there are far too many that do not realize the importance of good business practices when doing so.
Take, for example, branding. When you set out to save the world, or at least make it a better place, it’s easy to just assume that the worthiness of your cause will be enough to convince people to contribute. What’s not immediately obvious is the sheer depth of other causes competing for attention—not to mention other nonprofits in same or similar niches.
This results in the same problem that every for-profit business has—how can you differentiate in a crowded marketplace? Nobody wants their nonprofit to be blasted for spending more on promotions than actually helping others, but a little bit of expert branding can be a force multiplier that guarantees that a mission is accomplished correctly.
Raissa Frenkel from the Finker-Frenkel Family Foundation explains how improving your brand strategy can actually bolster a nonprofit, too.
There’s no question that customer experience (CX) is a data-driven discipline. After all, at the foundation of most CX programs are close-ended surveys designed to capture and analyze customer feedback.
Yes, metrics are a crucial element of every successful CX program. With metrics, you can establish a clear performance baseline and track trends based on actions you take over time.
But how do you know in advance if the actions you take will be the right ones? Wouldn’t it be great to have a crystal ball that lets you know exactly what to do to have the biggest impact on your anchor metrics?
Here’s some good news: You don’t need to have psychic powers to excel at CX. Instead, you need to use predictive analytics to clarify expected returns before you take every step—and to ensure you have clean data to power your CX metrics program. Only then can you take meaningful action based on your customer data.
In this blog, Richard Boehmcke shares how predictive analytics can benefit your business and therefore fundraising successes.
Big Data is not just the ability to store large amounts of data, more important is what we can do to the data in that large volume, how we use the data with such large volumes.
One of its uses is for data analysis needs. Big Data Analysis can be done in order to assist the decision making process (Decision Support) and strategy (Strategic Business) of an organization, business institution, or company.
Jeefri A. Moka explains more below.
Traditionally, enterprises have focused their data strategies around business intelligence (BI), but the rise of predictive and prescriptive analytics platforms, in part thanks to machine learning and artificial intelligence, is changing the equation. Even business intelligence itself is evolving, tipping in capabilities previously exclusive to business analytics platforms.
Analysts and consultants agree that understanding the distinctions between business intelligence and other analytics platforms, as well as the value each brings to the enterprise, matters significantly in getting your data strategy right.
Read the blog by Mary Pratt below on how business analytics is evolving.
Utilising data to make better business decisions is on the agenda for the majority of organisations, with almost three-quarters (74%) saying they want to be “data-driven,” according to a study by Forrester. However, data is only valuable if it transpires into meaningful actions – only 29% of organisations said their data efforts have led to actionable insights.
While there are many platforms out there that offer inbuilt analytics and insights, more often than not you’ll end up with a hefty amount of data – very little of which you can actually put to good use. To measure your data, analyse it and produce worthwhile, data-driven actions, you’ll need a team of experts to take the reins.
Generally speaking, there are three functions that fit under the data umbrella; collecting data, analysing it and producing actionable insights.
This blog by Noa Muratsubaki explains the differences between these three functions.
Five key figures in fundraising tech reflect on how technology has changed fundraising and what’s next. With contributions from Mike Gianoni (President and CEO, Blackbaud), Bill Strathmann (CEO, Network for Good), Mike Geiger, M.B.A., C.P.A. (President and CEO, Association of Fundraising Professionals), Steve Spinner (CEO, RevUp Software) and Jean-Paul Guilbault (President and CEO, Community Brands).
Survey respondents for the 2018 Global NGO Technology Report were asked to rate the effectiveness of the most commonly used communication and fundraising tools. Their answers provide valuable insight into which tools NPOs, NGOs, and charities should prioritize in their communications and fundraising strategy.
Picture this: a wealthy donor opens up the daily newspaper at her kitchen table and sees a heart-warming story about a school-age child benefiting from your nonprofit’s services.
On her drive to work, she hears your executive director interviewed on morning news radio.
Before an afternoon meeting, the same donor scans her Instagram and Facebook feeds and sees your story being shared.
Later, she gets an email from your nonprofit, featuring the story and a direct request for a gift. In one click, a donation is made.
What steps did it take to turn one story into a donation? Maura F. Farrell provides the details.
The formula for getting work done is simple: Show up and sit there. Think. Stare out the window. Write.
There’s no muse, no need for a perfect storm of artistic conditions to come together before you can rack up the pages. You just do the work. The work gets done.
But simple formulas don’t always produce good results. Let Rachel Toor guide you through tips to of what to do when you get stuck.
One of the greatest challenges of being a development professional is dealing with rejection. The fact is, you are going to hear the word “No” a lot.
But the best fundraisers know not to take it personally and get right back on that fundraising horse. They also learn that sometimes a No can help you find your way to a Yes.
Here, Allison Gauss, defines the 9 types of fundraising nos and what to do with them.
How to hold charity trustee and member meetings, including AGMs, so you can make decisions legally and your charity can run effectively.
Clear guidance from the Charity Commission for trustees.
The nonprofit sector has created a culture in which strategic work is seen as a necessary evil, a process to endure, something to suffer through. Executives often enter the process begrudgingly. They may insist there is no time, money, or support. They may say that the board adds little value, that a bold and expensive vision will be hard to “sell” to a board that must raise money. It’s pretty easy to see how an executive director could have an attitude problem.
When it comes to strategic planning, chief executives often feel sure they know the right answer and already have a sense of what needs to get done in the next few years. Board members will tell you their voices aren’t heard or valued. Precious few board members find making plans invigorating or enriching, nor are they excited to promote a new strategy to potential donors.
Some organizations get the planning process right, but in this blog Joan Garry discusses some of the strategic-planning problems and how to solve them.
Being a trustee feels like a weighty responsibility. There are so many important issues to get to grips with and fundraising is often one of the areas in which many trustees have little or no experience.
In fact, many of the skills and experiences they have from their business lives directly apply to fundraising: having a clear strategy, thinking long term, understanding the budget, checking out the competition, exploring the data, knowing your customers, and taking a leadership role.
Susie Hills poses six questions to help trustees explore these vital aspects of the fundraising health of their organisations.
Time and time again we see the critical role that leaders and trustees have on their charity’s major gift fundraising success.
If you are a Trustee or leader, how do you develop the skills that make you effective in either fundraising directly or supporting the executive team? What do you need to know about major gift fundraising in order to lead from the front?
Caroline Underwood shares 5 questions fundraising boards should ask themselves in this blog.
At some level, every fundraiser knows that alumni engagement is an important driver of alumni giving. At the same time, the advancement profession seems perpetually perplexed by how to measure engagement and apply those measures to increase philanthropy. Why is that?
Generally speaking, advancement offices have access to a pretty accurate picture of who alumni were as students, but very little information on who they are now.
As a result, advancement professionals are primed to treat alumni as former students instead of getting to know them as mature adults. This leads to false assumptions about current alumni needs and the relevant steps a school might take to increase engagement by addressing those needs.
Different from alumni affinity, Dr. Jay Le Roux Dillon describes “Alumni Role Identity” in this series of blogs – a measure of a graduate’s level of connection to their alma mater and an indicator of their inclination to donate to same.
Part 1: https://www.salesforce.org/alumni-engagement-weve-gotten-wrong-fix/
Part 2: https://www.salesforce.org/higher-education-fundraising-culture-sameness-busting-3-massive-myths/
Part 3: https://www.salesforce.org/alumni-role-identity-new-way-alumni-donor-psyche/
Part 4: https://www.salesforce.org/past-webinars/alumni-engagement-scoring-science-tell-us-webinar/
Unsuccessful fundraisers don’t understand qualification. They don’t recognize its power. They wait for the next wealth screened list. They fiddle with it in Excel or in some other database. They make a few calls. They don’t get any appointments. They give up. Then they say the list was no good.
Unsuccessful fundraisers don’t use the qualification process effectively. They don’t recognize the fact that understanding qualified supporters in-depth is crucial. When they call, write or visit them, they ignore their interests, passions, desires, and needs. And, too often, they ignore them entirely. They don’t call, write or visit them at all.
Here, Greg Warner provides seven easy to follow steps to help you qualify your prospects.
Wealth advisors need to understand wealth trends in relation to their client’s investment strategies. Their companies have the necessary resources to provide that insight for them in the form of studies and surveys. Surveys dealing with wealth allocation are particularly useful for estimating wealth.
In this blog, Kenny Tavares has come up with a list of three resources that can be accessed for free to begin creating your own wealth estimates. Aside from having the data we crave, these reports provide great information on current wealth trends.
GDPR note: Just because data is available in the public domain does not necessarily mean that it can be harvested and used for other purposes. Although you may not have to obtain consent to use it, please check with your data protection officer or seek legal advise before undertaking prospect research.
What’s it like to give away a billion dollars?
One of the few people who know is Stephen Schwarzman, co-founder, chairman and chief executive of Blackstone, one of the world’s biggest private equity firms.
He has given away more than that already, mainly to causes related to education, culture and the arts, but – with a fortune put at more than $16bn (£12.8bn) – is likely to go far further during his lifetime.
His latest big donation, in June this year, was a £150m gift to the University of Oxford to establish an institute dedicated to the study of ethics in artificial intelligence.
He realised very quickly that “the UK was unaccustomed to philanthropy on this scale. During the course of the day [that the donation was announced] I learned that my single gift was about half of the £310m given by all philanthropic individuals to arts and culture in England during 2017-18.”
The UK lags well behind the US, both in terms of the number of wealthy people who make sizeable donations to good causes and in terms of the scale in which they donate.
Ian King, Business presenter on Sky News examines the socio-economic reasons behind the different attitudes to charity in these two countries.
It’s important to be aware of data protection legislation across the globe so that non-profits are familiar with requirements. If nothing else, these requirements tend to become the norm and therefore shape the expectations of your donors and supporters.
The CCPA applies to “businesses.” The Act defines that term to include any legal entity (e.g., corporations, associations, partnerships, etc.) that is “organized or operated for the profit or financial benefit of its shareholders or other owners.”1 This accords with the fact that non-profits are exempt from many of the data privacy and security regulations within the United States – in particular, they are largely exempt from enforcement by the Federal Trade Commission, and, therefore, are exempt from compliance with the rules, regulations, and guidance of the Federal Trade Commission to the extent that such rules, regulations, or guidance are not incorporated in state laws that do apply to the non-profit.
In comparison, the European GDPR does not contain any exemptions for non-profit organizations.
So, unless your non-profit has a commercial branch or deals in selling data lists, CCPA does not apply. GDPR, however, does – if you are dealing with citizens of the European Union.