What will you stop doing?

Here’s a question. “How can non profits invest more in middle donors  when there’s simply no more money to invest?” The short answer. Stop doing something else and invest that time and money in middle donors. I was on a webinar hosted by the fantastic Justin Perkins at Care 2 discussing the Sea Change Missingread more

Stop Making Excuses

Stop making excuses for your lack of stewardship communications and other cultivations for middle donors. Good stewardship could make the difference between happy, loyal and generous donors on the one hand and one-and-done tippers on the other. Here are some of the excuses we hear every day. “We can’t afford pure cultivations.” The truth isread more

Walmart and Nordstrom’s

Fundraising models look an awful lot like private sector business models. And looking at the up- and downsides of these approaches could inform our fundraising. Take Walmart. Walmart’s model is high volume, low profit margin. They may only make a penny or two on everything they sell, but they sell a ginormous amount of stuff.read more

Efficiency is a flawed metric

The baker who bakes a cake fastest and cheapest usually doesn’t have the best tasting cake. And the fundraiser who yields the most immediate return for the least amount of dollars spent usually doesn’t have the happiest, most generous donors. Efficiency is a flawed metric. In our latest study, The Missing Middle: Why Neglecting Middleread more

Tribal Tensions in Dot-orgTopia

If Margaret Mead were alive today she’d have a blast and half studying tribal behavior within any large non-profit. Who needs to go to Tuvalu when you have warring cultures to study in your own backyard? The fundraising world has not one but two distinct – and often mutually antagonistic — tribes: Direct marketers andread more

Middle Donors Fight for Equality: HRC Success Story

Wow – that word escaped our mouths frequently when we spoke with Kevin Layton at the Human Rights Campaign. Layton, and the four-person team he leads are the brains and brawn behind a sophisticated middle donor fundraising program that invests heavily in a mix of volunteer people power, events and direct marketing outreach. HRC’s middleread more

Lost in the Middle

A surprising discovery almost six years ago prompted an inquiry by Alia and me that culminates – for now – with a whitepaper we will be releasing this Sunday at the AFP Conference. In the process of studying the online habits of donors in the $1,000 to $10,000 range, we discovered that among more thanread more

The Fantasy of Zero Risk, High Return

Starting or expanding a fundraising program is exactly like launching a small business (or a big business in some cases). That means there needs to be a capital investment. There needs to be a clear brand and well-defined “customer market.” There needs to be disciplined marketing messages. There needs to be a remarkable product. Perhapsread more