iMarketSmart

A powerful new way to deliver value to your future supporters

iMarketSmart

If you work for a college or university, you already know that many of your donors give because of the experience they had when they attended your institution. For instance, they might have had a professor who changed their life for the better.

Why your nonprofit’s donor survey could be causing more harm than good

iMarketSmart

Thinking about sending out a donor survey ? If so, be sure to use the survey responses properly so you ‘speak’ personally and relevantly to each individual respondent over time with ongoing cultivation. You’ve got to show ‘em that you know ’em!

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How to put marketing automation to work for your nonprofit’s fundraising

iMarketSmart

Catching up. If you read all my previous posts (starting here) about how you can use marketing automation to raise more major and legacy gifts, you’re probably starting to see how powerful this technology can be for your nonprofit’s fundraising operations.

Top 10 ways marketing automation helps nonprofits raise more money for less

iMarketSmart

Quick review. In my previous post I outlined the 3 types of marketing automation tools fundraising operations really should understand. Plus I recommended you deploy high-level automation to support the raising of major and planned gifts. Plus, I said it can help you move your mid-level donors up.

3 types of marketing automation fundraising operations need to understand (including one you really need to deploy right away)

iMarketSmart

In this previous post we discussed the fact that lower-level, basic automation works better for raising low-dollar donors. . That’s why you need more sophisticated automation if you want to raise major gifts and planned gifts, and you want to move mid-level donors up the pyramid.

Do you really need MORE gift officers to raise more money?

iMarketSmart

Too many nonprofits mistakenly assume that the best way to increase major gifts fundraising is to hire more major gifts officers. . To a point, this might be true. But it’s simply not cost-efficient. And because of turnover, it’s hard to sustain. Plus, remember what happened to Blockbuster.

Can your nonprofit organization afford to invest in marketing automation?

iMarketSmart

SPOILER ALERT: You can’t afford not to automate your fundraising operations. In my previous post , I promised to examine whether or not you can afford to invest in automating your team’s more mundane tasks. So let’s jump in! . First, consider why major gifts fundraisers fire their employers.

The case for marketing automation: Why nonprofit fundraising operations should automate tasks to optimize staff performance

iMarketSmart

Fundraising is getting harder. You don’t just feel it. You know it from the data. Retention is getting tougher. Attracting new donors is becoming more costly. The one bright spot of late has been that major gifts have increased, which has compensated for losses in other areas. For now.

12 Principles of Donor Love From David Love

iMarketSmart

Today, I’ll be treating you to a guest post written by a true fundraising legend— David Love. . David (also known as The Godfather of Good) started raising money precisely when I was first born… in 1969!

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Dr. Russell James’ Top 10 Ways Your Supporters Can Give Wisely Before the Year Ends

iMarketSmart

I’m very thankful that Dr. Russell James has graciously shared 10 smart ways your supporters can give wisely before the end of this year. He recommends you share these concepts right away, as you see fit. 1. Deduct $300 without itemizing. This year only!

7 Major Gift Fundraising Benchmarks You Really Need To Know

iMarketSmart

Before we begin. The 2020 Major Gift Benchmark Study asked people working in nonprofit organizations (n=580) what they consider to be a major gift, how they are staffed to raise major gifts, the types of information used to identify major gift prospects, and more.

The Way Forward: Part 1 of 3 for Marketing Major and Legacy Gifts in the Coronavirus Era

iMarketSmart

Don’t Panic. It’s the first rule of crisis management. When we panic we make bad decisions. Many of us have been facing closures, lockdowns and other extreme measures around the pandemic for almost a month, and every organization is thinking about how they can cut nonessential costs.

Your main website sucks at raising major gifts – and here’s why

iMarketSmart

Most nonprofits have very narcissistic websites that promote how great they are and how well suited they are to accomplish their mission. Sure, it’s true that donors need to have belief and confidence in your organization to help them achieve their philanthropic outcomes.

Cold calling major donors to arrange appointments doesn’t work – but this method does

iMarketSmart

No one likes getting cold calls and you probably don’t like making them.

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9 hard truths your fundraising operation needs to face in the post-pandemic era.

iMarketSmart

Competition is fierce and everywhere. Nonprofits don’t only compete with other nonprofits. They also compete with private sector businesses and Uncle Sam (the tax collector) for every donor’s “share of wallet and attention.”

A pep talk for fundraisers like you!

iMarketSmart

We are going to get through this, and history proves it. For many of us, this is not the first economic downturn we have seen in our careers.When we look at the Great Recession of 2008, giving declined only slightly.

If you want to hear how the best major gift officers succeed (and fail) in fundraising… look no further

iMarketSmart

A different frame of reference. Every once in a while someone comes along to change things. They say a few words differently or help you see things from a divergent perspective. That’s what Kevin Fitzpatrick did with his ‘One Visit Away’ podcast. Link to the Apple podcast.

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The worst way to start a conversation with a donor.

iMarketSmart

“Did you get the [information, brochure, or letter] I sent?” ” Has anyone really had great success starting an outreach call with this question?

Why Your Giving Tuesday Efforts Will Succeed Or Fail

iMarketSmart

Our sector is, once again, awaiting the results of Giving Tuesday without much thought about what value WE are giving to our supporters— and that’s really too bad. Why,” you might ask? The answer: Because immutable laws apply when money is involved.

5 Best Practices For Writing Emails to Major and Legacy Donor Prospects

iMarketSmart

Be truthful, no tricks! You cannot build relationships upon lies. Not even white lies. Be relevant. . To do that, you must consider where ea ch supporter resides in the consideration process for giving and what they might be thinking.

How to Reach Out to Your Major or Legacy Gift Prospects Using LinkedIn

iMarketSmart

You know major gift fundraising is a marathon, not a sprint. But your boss wants results now. So you screen your list for wealth. Or maybe you have a predictive model developed to determine whom to contact first. Next, you send a letter to your prospect and promise to follow it up with a phone call.

Top 10 Capital Campaign Mistakes Revealed

iMarketSmart

Can you add to this list? Failure to conduct a feasibility study. Failure to pay attention to the results of the feasibility study. Failure to build an appropriate campaign leadership team. Failure to obtain deep and broad stakeholder buy-in.

Here’s what I learned about leadership in 2019. I hope it helps you!

iMarketSmart

Leadership is NOT about ‘managing’ people, bossing them around, or being a tyrant and it ISN’T about showing people how great YOU are either. Instead, it’s about helping coachable people that have passion and character become great.

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3 Simple Fundraising Metrics for Nonprofits (and How to Calculate Them)

iMarketSmart

Google search “fundraising metrics” and you’ll find plenty of blog posts and articles. In fact, you’ll come across too many. It can be overwhelming to figure out what fundraising metrics your nonprofit should track and measure.

Top 10 Free Resources Thanks To Dr. Russell James

iMarketSmart

Nearly ten years ago I made a new friend. It started out with an error. I wrote a blog post about the link between childlessness and planned giving. But I screwed up my math. Dr. James reached out to ‘help’ me catch the error and we struck up a dialogue via my blog.

test forms

iMarketSmart

The post test forms appeared first on MarketSmart. Smartideas

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Donor-advised Funds Are Misunderstood, Bound to Be Regulated, and Not Going Anywhere

iMarketSmart

“Have you read this one?”. “Zach, hold on I didn’t even finish the other articles you sent me yet.” ” I guess I was being a bit overwhelming. Okay, yeah, I’m sorry. It’s just there is SO much out there on DAFs right now. It’s hard to keep up.”.

THE WAY FORWARD: PART 2 OF 3 FOR MARKETING MAJOR AND LEGACY GIFTS IN THE CORONAVIRUS ERA

iMarketSmart

This is part 2 of 3 in a series. For the previous post, go he re. Kill self-doubt. Some in your organization might be saying things like: “Our major donors’ investment portfolios have been decimated. There’s no way they’ll give.” I want to help you quash this negative train of thought right now.

Two Examples of How to Cultivate Your Donors (Even When They Aren’t Your Donors)

iMarketSmart

There’s a theme to major and legacy gift fundraising. You don’t have to be Sherlock Holmes to uncover it. It’s the importance of relationship building. At the root of every major or legacy gift made there’s an intimate and undoubtedly deep connection between a donor and the organization.

Major and Legacy Gift Fundraising Is Changing… Blame Robocalls.

iMarketSmart

Relationships building is part art, part science. And, as we all know, raising major and legacy gifts is all about building meaningful relationships. Over the past few years, the strategies and tactics nonprofits employ to raise major and legacy gifts has evolved and changed, and with good reason.

7 big ideas for raising ‘major gifts of assets’ right now from Dr. Russell James

iMarketSmart

A couple of weeks ago, my longtime friend Dr. Russell James presented his top recommendations for fundraisers to consider especially during the coronavirus era. If you missed the event, don’t worry. You can view the recorded webinar and download the slides here.

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Product Updates: Stewardship Series Effort and Online Will Tool Add-on

iMarketSmart

Stewardship Series Effort. When it comes to legacy gifts, many organizations spend too much time focused on uncovering hidden gifts or closing more of them. Sure, it’s important to find out who planned a secret gift and to inspire donors to make planned gift disclosures.

Top 10 Reasons Why Fundraisers Might Be Uncomfortable ‘Making The Ask’

iMarketSmart

Let me know what you think about my top 10 reasons why some fundraisers might be uncomfortable making the ask : 10. They are in the wrong job and should be doing something else; 9. They are poorly trained (or not trained at all) and, therefore, don’t know how and when to do it; 8. They don’t truly believe in their employer’s mission ; 7.

A Glossary of Key Fundraising Terms, Jargon, and Vocabulary You Need to Know

iMarketSmart

Every profession has its fair share of jargon. Fundraising, and nonprofits in general, are no exception. Fundraising terms, acronyms, and jargon are as varied and valid as any other industry. As professionals in this field, we certainly have a wide-ranging glossary of phrases at our disposal.

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How to Project Your Planned Gift Potential

iMarketSmart

“I owe a great deal of thanks to the person who invested in planned giving 15 years ago.”. I was sitting in the crowd at the 2019 ANA Chicago Nonprofit Conference, listening to the presentation titled “Retaining Your Sustaining Donors” when my ears perked up.

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Musical chairs, your donors, and fundraising?

iMarketSmart

I think fundraisers should recognize that donors are playing a lifelong game of musical chairs. The people you consider to be YOUR donors are circling around many other charities and, from time to time, they ‘sit’ with one that engages them properly and makes them feel good. Then, when the music starts playing again, they go around and around until they find another charity and take a seat there for a while.

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GUEST POST: A Great Idea… Connecting With Donors Through Photo Books

iMarketSmart

This is a first! I’ve never had anyone write a guest post for my blog. But when I saw what Daphne Powell was doing to grow relationships with her donors, I reached out to her to see if she might consider telling you her story. So, here goes… Introducing Daphne Powell and her magical use of photo books for donor stewardship. Hoooooorayyyyy Daphne! Connecting with donors through photo books. By Daphne Powell.

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MarketSmart’s “How-to” Guide for Donor-Advised Funds (DAFs)

iMarketSmart

Click here for the free comprehensive guide for donor-advised funds. Trends come and go, but donor-advised funds are forever. I’m not quite sure that’s the quote, but I think it goes something like that.

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What Does Thanksgiving Have to Do with Fundraising? A Surprising Amount.

iMarketSmart

“You can succeed best and quickest by helping others to succeed.”. I wasn’t frustrated. If anything, I was disappointed. How could I forget that quote?” I thought to myself. I was sitting in our CEO’s office.

3 simple steps to break your transactional, spray-and-pray fundraising addiction

iMarketSmart

Nonprofits tend to get addicted to transactions. Of course addictions are hard to break. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be broken at all. Too often, nonprofits get addicted to making requests for transactions (solicitations) aimed mostly toward low-capacity supporters even though most of the funding already comes from major donors (including bequests).

Engagement Calling Metrics for Lead Outreach Associates Tasked With Arranging Meetings With Major Donor & Legacy Donor Prospects

iMarketSmart

Engagement calling, not cold calling! About 1 1/2 years ago I introduced the concept of Engagement Calling as the best way to land appointments with highly qualified, major gift donor prospects (much better than cold calling). But back then I failed to provide metrics for managing the process. So, today, I’ll lay them out for you. But before we dive into that, it’s important to remember that most supporters will not be ready to make a gift right away.

MarketSmart + The Giving Institute

iMarketSmart

In case you couldn’t tell from the title of today’s blog post, we have some exciting news to share with you! MarketSmart is the newest member of The Giving Institute. Founded in 1935, The Giving Institute has served as one of the most influential and important organizations advancing leadership and ethics in philanthropy and fundraising in our sector.

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It’s too bad that nonprofit leaders and board members thwart risk-taking

iMarketSmart

I think too many in the nonprofit sector fear failure. Unfortunately, that paralyzes people. It prevents them from making decisions and thwarts innovation. In most cases it isn’t the fundraisers fault. They want to take risks. But, unfortunately the leaders, the board or the media make fundraisers feel like they can’t. They always seem to be lurking, waiting for failure so they can jump in shouting, “How dare you waste money!” and that thwarts risk-taking which leads to innovation.