What happens behind closed doors…

“We’re rethinking what membership means,” He said. “Oh, have you asked your members?” “Ask our members,” he wondered aloud. “Yes – they probably have opinions about membership.” I just had this conversation. Really. This smart professional was re-imagining membership behind closed doors — with staff and a few board members. Asking members about their attitudes… Read more

Looks Matter

“Tell me something i don’t already know,” you might answer. I’m not talking about dating, however. I’m talking website design. A study released just this week found that page design can have a dramatic effect not only on how much of your content people read, but how positively they perceive your content overall. It’s kind… Read more

Super man is my least favorite super hero: Here’s why

His only vulnerability is Kryptonite. That means he’s really unapproachable. And I like my super heroes, like I like my friends, amazing and flawed all at the same time. People make their strongest, deepest connections when they share their vulnerabilities — the embarrassing, the crazy, the beautiful.  Just ask Brene Brown. Each year, I go to… Read more

Digital Intimacy

When was the last time a webinar touched your heart? If you said “never,” welcome to the club. It’s important to remember the goal of donor cultivation is connection, not information. Is it possible to create a sense of intimacy online? Yes, but it’s hard. In fact the only great example I know has nothing to do… Read more

Donors feel — just like you

Reflect on something you are struggling with right now. Maybe your kid is having trouble with math. Maybe you just got passed up for a promotion. Maybe you are in the middle of shifting an important relationship. You are human. And you are dealing with the joy and struggle that comes with that. Our donor… Read more

High Value Donors? Use Low Technology.

Alia and I are just back from BBCON, the annual gathering of users of the many digital fundraising platforms that operate under the Blackbaud banner. That got me thinking about technology and mid-level donors. Here’s my epiphany – the higher you go on the giving pyramid, the lower you want to go on the technology… Read more

The scariest thing around: Expert mind

Socrates said “The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.” Buddhist teacher Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche said, “In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, in the expert’s mind there are few.” Anonymous said, “Unless your name is Google, stop acting like you freaking know everything.” The gist of all this wisdom? Expert mind is scary.… Read more

Stand out copy

Every time you sit down to write, you have a chance to make an impression. Your emails to donors, your thank you notes, your receipts… they can all stand out. But only if they don’t sound like the same old same old. Is your copy up to snuff? Are you reflecting your unique brand personality… Read more