Kill the New Donor El Dorado Myth

Non profits like to imagine El Dorado — a city paved in gold-laden new donors. In meetings when people evoke the El Dorado myth and ask “how do we tap into xxx market to find new donors?” I often reply, “How are we treating the donors we have?” It’s easy to get bored with what… Read more

People should NOT like you

I want everyone to like me. It’s my Achilles heel. I wish I didn’t care about people who don’t like me and instead could simply focus on those who do. But I worry. Did I say the wrong thing? Did I act the wrong way? Most non profits want everyone to like them too. It’s… Read more

Stephen King and Fundraising: 4 Ways to Show Personality in Your Copy

Imagine ghost writing an appeal from Stephen King. I had the opportunity to do just that. It was sweat-inducing (ghost writing for Stephen King????), but it also got me thinking about personality and the scant attention non profits typically pay to it in appeals and outreach. In addition to Mr. King, I’ve written for Ashley Judd,… Read more

30 Bits of Online Fundraising Wisdom for 2014

What should a nonprofit fundraiser focus on in 2014? Care2 asked 30 experts — including Mark and I. And they’ve released the refreshing advice in an easy-to-read ebook. You can get it here. Find tips to help you: Boost web traffic from search Increase donor retention Find your super users Go responsive with your website… Read more

Donors want to feel good

Donors give to organizations because they want to help — people, animals, kids, their community, [insert your beneficiary here]. But they also give because they want to feel good. Most of us are really good at focusing on the former in our messaging. But what about the latter? I recently dug into research from one… Read more

A Secret To Eliminate Drama From Your Work Place

Is your non profit drama-free? Chances are the answer is a resounding no. Non profits — like all organizations that involve people (AKA all of them) — can be prone to drama and interpersonal dysfunction. I typically write about fundraising strategies. But in order to execute well on those strategies, we need organizations that can… Read more

Olive Farmers Can Teach You About Fundraising

Olive farmers pick olives in two ways. Sometimes they thrash their trees using a rake-like tool that shakes the olives to the ground. Other times, they hand pick their olives from the branches carefully. Their style-choice depends — not on the type of tree, or the day, or the weather — but on the quality… Read more