11 Reasons Why Your Program Staff Shouldn’t Control Your Marketing

This incredible list comes courtesy of ad man extraordinarie Roy Williams. While he focuses on ads, this list applies to overall non profit marketing as well. 1. The world of advertising is noisier and more crowded than you ever dreamed possible. 2. Even though you are paying money to reach them, prospective customers (e.g. donors)… Read more

The Gmail Promotions Tab – stop whining and get back to work

Much hand-wringing and apocalyptic angst has attended the roll-out of Gmail’s tabbed interface. Prognostications from the digital chatterati range from severe depression of open rates to the end of online marketing as we know it. The issue is the new “Promotions” tab, which brings together email offers from your favorite retailers, along with action alerts,… Read more

5 Scientific Ways to Build Relationships with Millennials

Last week, I was honored to speak at MCON 2013, a day of thought leadership and conversation about engaging the Millennial generation for good. As part of my talk, I shared insights from the science of behavior — as I believe in order to influence behavior and motivate people of all generations, we must first understand the… Read more

If you are sick of hearing about retention, Roger Craver thinks you’re about to be fired

I never pass up an opportunity to hear Roger Craver breaking down the fundamentals of fundraising with wit, piss and vinegar. In the latest edition of Steve MacLaughlin’s excellent podcast Non Profit Voices, Roger breaks down the retention crisis non profits are facing and shares the real cost of churn and burn acquisition strategies. What… Read more

How My Fear of Wrinkles Made Me A Loyal Donor: A “You”-tility Case Study

I’m outdoors in sunny Texas as I write this and I’m wearing an Environmental Working Group-endorsed sun screen. I know my sunscreen is safe and effective because EWG told me so. Their research and ultimate seal of approval makes me confident that I am wearing the best protection I can find — wrinkles begone with… Read more

They “like” you because they like you

Back when I was the “Internet guy” in a direct mail firm (talk about not fitting in), I learned the perils of attributing causation where cause and effect may not really exist. For instance, the presence of a telephone number in a donor’s record correlates with a higher lifetime value. What great testimony to the… Read more

Millennials want to see impact

Next week, I’ll be speaking at MCON 2013 — an event aimed at inspiring conversations about engaging the millennial generation for good. As part of my talk on the science of behavior and millennial philanthropic giving, I plan to emphasize the fact that millennials — more so than other generations — want to see the… Read more

getting smart with graphs and charts

As with most online tools, non-profits were a couple of years late to the infographics party. But what we lacked in early adoptness we have made up for in sheer exuberance. Infographics are a powerful communications medium, if used properly. Too often, they are created as design elements, and are just confusing. Check out this… Read more