How to have an immediate impact in your new fundraising position

You have just been offered a job as a Director of Development and now what? Well, over the past twenty years, I have had my share of jobs and have started some fundraising offices within nonprofits as part of my consulting practice.  As a result, I have gotten pretty good at figuring out what the […] Read more »

How to ensure the success of your next fundraising campaign

Often, I get asked, “What is the magic behind a successful fundraising campaign?” Well, it is not all magic.  There is some science.  And, with over twenty years of experience, I am going to share the top tips that have made it all “seem” like magic so that you can too. I am going to […] Read more »

How to follow up on your direct mail appeal letter

Do you mail a spring or fall direct mail appeal letter and hope for the best?  Well, “a wing and a prayer” is not a strategy.  A strategy by definition is a plan of action or policy designed to achieve a major or overall aim. Here are some simple steps that you can take to follow […] Read more »

How to calculate your key fundraising metrics

Now that it is development planning season for many with the start of a new fiscal year looming, I am often asked, where do you start first when putting together your development plan and calendar. Well, for me, I start at the beginning. I tend to look at the key metrics and how past Return […] Read more »

How to turn your fundraising event attendees into supportive donors

Spring is the season of Galas or so it seems. And, rightly so, the weather is turning warmer and everyone’s thoughts seem to be on getting out after a long winter. I am often asked by organizations who are holding galas or other fundraising events, what is the key to turning event attendees into loyal […] Read more »

How to run a successful Mother’s Day fundraising campaign

At the start of Spring, our thoughts turn to flowers, sunshine, and our Mom’s!  And, for many nonprofit organizations, this is a great direct mail theme and just in time for a Spring appeal. So, how can you maximize this appeal to give your donors the best experience? Well, for one, if your organization has moms […] Read more »

Do you SWOT before accepting a job offer?

How do you make that decision to accept your next position? Do you go by with what your heart feels?  Well, there is some importance to listening to your “heart,” “intuition” or “gut” when making decisions like this, there is also an important thing you can do, and that is due diligence. You want to […] Read more »

Oh, the woes of a nonprofit fundraising database!

So, let’s talk database. What? That seems like something so mundane. Well, it may be, but it is so critical to fundraising. Throughout my professional career, I have been victim to bad databases, and I have been asked to work with bad databases. One thing is for sure, without an initial thought out structure, problems are inevitable. I […] Read more »

A season of burnout?

I have worked in the nonprofit world far longer than I can remember.  My job began in the sector back in 1992 or so, when I became a grant writing intern for a local non-profit organization as part of my undergraduate work. Little did I realize that some twenty plus years later, I would still be […] Read more »

OORAH – What the Marines taught me about fundraising

This weekend I took a little vacation of sorts.  I ran a marathon.  The Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, DC.  Running a marathon is exhausting, but also, reflective.  For you see, you run for 26 miles.  That is a long time on your feet – sometimes, three, four, five, six, or even more hours. Over […] Read more »