Quick Tips: Shake up your mailing calendar

A lot of folks use the summer to plan their full calendar of mailings.  Are you still sending two big mailings a year, once in December, to capitalize on the tax year ending, and once in the late Spring, before the summer but a reasonable distance from that holiday mailing?

You’ve got plenty of company, which may offer some comfort…but a lot of folks in nonprofit management positions (including development) tend to be very risk averse, so “best practices” and “wisdom of the masses” tend to get conflated.

You don’t NEED to shake things up.  But maybe you should.   Read more

Quick Tips: Learn How to Give from the Buffetts

Talk about a sincere and thoughtful philanthropist: Warren Buffett.  Oh, wait…we’re not talking about him, even though he’s a bit more famous than his older sister, Doris.

Doris Buffett and her grandson, Alex Rozek have been interested in making more people into philanthropists – people who are not just charitable with their money, but think strategically about how to support the causes and organizations they care about the most. Read more

Quick Tips: Getting Online Donations Up and Running, ASAP

A friend/reader just took a summer internship helping a small organization to think about their fundraising strategy.  He’s young (as you might have guessed from the internship bit), so the first thing the board did was assume that he knows a lot about “online stuff.”  Kids today, right?

Their top priority for him was to figure out how to get the organization to a place where they could accept online donations.

There’s more to having an online strategy than simply being able to take a credit card donation online…a LOT more, honestly.  Bottomline, being thoughtful is worth more than being an early-adopter of new technologies.  Always.  But ideally, you want to be thoughtful and take advantage of new tools. Read more

Quick Tips: Email Strategy

Email is a great tool.  But like everything, you have to know how to use it well if you want it to be effective.  One of its huge advantages, the very very low cost per email (for most of us, it’s just the staff time spent putting together the list above the sunk costs of having an email management system) makes us a little less cautious about how we structure and plan our mass emails. Read more