Don’t be Stupid

I never get tired of railing against vanity metrics because people never seem to tire of following them. The most noxious vanity metric in our world is email list size. There are more ways to inflate that number than you can count. They all produce a bad outcome, if you consider list fatigue and aread more

There’s a tribe for that

Back packs with meal management systems built in… Branch Chain Amino Acids… Strong Magazine… I didn’t know about these things before joining my tribe — bodybuilders. I sure do now. My tribe hates on cross fitters. We eat different kinds of protein (casein, whey, soy, pea) for different purposes and at different times during our day.read more

The Future of Fundraising

Those clever folks over at Blackbaud have wrassled up a nifty new free ebook with short essays from a variety of folks on the front lines of fundraising. We live in interesting times, sad to say. This compendium is a great way to stay up to date with what works, what doesn’t, and what’s comingread more

Case Study: How To Write An Incredible First-Person Story

Telling a good story is tough. Telling a a good first-person story is tougher. A first-person story is narrated from the perspective of a character who is speaking directly about herself. To be authentic, the author really has to get inside the character’s head. The language must be language that character would use. The toneread more

Move the boulder up the hill: 3 keys to integrated marketing

Why is integrated marketing so damn hard? Because it requires operating outside of traditional organizational silos —  communications, digital, programs, direct marketing, etc… All stakeholders must come together and meet their goals within a unified framework. Doing that is challenging, but it can be done! Here are three key ingredients from successful integrated marketing campaigns. Leadership.read more

The only thing you need to know about a successful sustainer strategy

Two words: Lifetime value Ok – it’s a little more complicated than that. But understanding lifetime value is where a successful sustainer strategy starts. Too often organizations don’t recognize the tension between lifetime value and immediate budget goals. They want a sustainer strategy to increase their donor pool’s lifetime value, but they don’t want toread more

Are Your Stories Negative Enough?

If you ever saw the movie Adaptation, you’re at least somewhat familiar with fabled story coach Robert McKee (no relationship to Alia). Though played by an actor in the movie, McKee is very much a real person, and his seminars have influenced the work of some of this generation’s best storytellers. He’s also a characterread more