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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.

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.

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5 Online Year-End Fundraising Stats You Can Use to Help Craft Your Campaign

iMarketSmart

This guest post on year-end fundraising stats is from Nathan Hill at NextAfter. Every development professional understands the importance of year-end fundraising.

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5 Ways You Can Get Meetings with Major Donors (Even When They Won’t Answer their Phone)

iMarketSmart

I hear the following all the time when I ask fundraisers about their efforts to land meetings with major and legacy donors: “I tried calling, but they didn’t answer the phone,” they say. So what’s really happening here.

3 Reasons You Should Be Thinking about QCDs (Backed By Data + A Free Guide)

iMarketSmart

How many decisions do you make each day? A quick google search yields our answer: somewhere near 35,000. That number may seem intimidating, “How can I make 35,000 decisions a day?” You might find yourself pondering.

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How Important Is Training for Fundraisers? Very.

iMarketSmart

This time of year is filled with tricks and treats. The end of October seemingly always has something in store for us, whether it be a new costume fad, wacky weather (too hot, or too cold), or the general “all hands on deck” push to execute year-end fundraising strategies.

3 Things You Can Learn From $58B in Donations

iMarketSmart

If you had $58B, you would be among some interesting company. 58B represents more wealth than Larry Page and Michael Bloomberg, but not enough to surpass Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, and Jeff Bezos.

The 80-20 Rule is DEAD!

iMarketSmart

It’s no longer 80-20 but, rather, 70/.7. According to our research, tons of nonprofits spend most of their fundraising budget on efforts focused on acquiring low dollar donors. Yet they only make up 7% of all donation revenue year after year.

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Introducing, Louis Diez— The Checklist Guy for Fundraising Excellence

iMarketSmart

Some people really know how to be givers. You know what I mean don’t you? From time to time all of us come across people who simply want to help others without seeking anything in return. Don’t you agree? That’s how I found Louis Diez.

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How to Improve and Develop Process at Your Nonprofit

iMarketSmart

Developing process is tricky. In the world of for-profit businesses there are myriad books , webinars , and even conferences you can attend to help you become a “process” master. Yet, when it comes to nonprofit organizations the literature is fewer and farther between.

One Simple Tactic You Can Use to Be More Effective at Everything

iMarketSmart

I wish I didn’t have such a “clickbait” title. Even I’d think twice before reading a blog post that suggests it can make you more effective at everything… But, before you press the back button or open a new tab, please hear me out.

Brand new digital body language filters

iMarketSmart

Filter by Digital Body Language. Digital body language is integral to understanding how supporters are engaging with your organization online. You can now filter by certain activities, such as microsite engagement, cultivation email engagement, recency of digital engagement, notes, and more!

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3 Reasons Why You Should Market Charitable IRA Rollovers (And What They Are)

iMarketSmart

What would you do with $2.5 trillion? Retire? Buy a beach house? Travel the world? Develop a marketing strategy for Charitable IRA Rollovers? Probably not the latter). The options seem limitless, and, in fact, they most certainly are if you were to come across that much money!

Finally, the true cause of high fundraiser turnover!

iMarketSmart

Recently a lot of people have been writing about the high level of turnover among fundraisers in our field.

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Could this be the true cause of high fundraiser turnover?

iMarketSmart

Recently a lot of people have been writing about the high level of turnover among fundraisers in our field.

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The power of convenience: A follow-up to my post about online will-writing tools

iMarketSmart

The power of convenience as an influencer and motivator of outcomes is enormous and should never be underestimated. Ours is a culture of convenience; we expect it in every area of our lives. Amazon.com is growing and profiting because it provides astounding levels of convenience to its customers.

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How to ask for a gift: Do you really have to ask?

iMarketSmart

At MarketSmart, we don’t close sales and we don’t close deals. When it comes to how to ask for a gift, you’ll see there’s a parallel with how we conduct sales, and how nonprofits should raise funds.

3 reasons why I use curse words (but only one that matters)

iMarketSmart

She told me others would say I was unprofessional. I was asked to lead a roundtable discussion at a conference recently. So I did. And afterward one of the attendees approached me as I got a cup of coffee in the sponsorship expo room.

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Online will-making tools: My pros and cons.

iMarketSmart

Brace yourself. . This is a long post because there’s a lot to be said. . I wrote it because digital will-writing tools are popping up to help your supporters facilitate their planning conveniently online. That’s creating both opportunities and challenges for fundraisers.

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Are your letters to major donors and donor prospects any good?

iMarketSmart

Direct mail is NOT dead! However, ‘ spray and pray ‘ direct mail should be! Long live one-to-one, highly relevant, personalized communications— including direct mail letters! Direct mail letters are powerful because, when done right, they make donors feel good.

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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.

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If you like VERITUS GROUP and you like me… now you can get both together!

iMarketSmart

Alignment. Have you ever met someone for the first time but felt like you had known them forever? Like you had a mysterious connection instantly? That’s how I felt when I first met Richard Perry and Jeff Schreifels (from Veritus Group) in Philadelphia years ago.

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At last, the Fundraising Report Card is now 100% free for nonprofits

iMarketSmart

In case you’ve never heard of it… The Fundraising Report Card is a little application I had my staff build a couple of years ago.

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A perfect example of ‘spray and pray fundraising’

iMarketSmart

This email wasted my time and annoyed me because… I don’t know this person. I don’t know this organization. I didn’t give her or them permission to email me. I have no connection whatsoever to this cause or this organization.

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.

Why your capital campaign feasibility study could be leaving a lot of money on the table.

iMarketSmart

I think most campaign feasibility studies leave a ton of money on the table. Here’s a hyper-simplified description of how it usually works. You hire a consultant. Together, you conduct the feasibility study and review the results.

Engagement Fundraising in Action with Erin Troia (EF-S03-E03)

iMarketSmart

Greg interviews Erin Troia about her “Engagement Fundraising” experiences. Erin recently finished reading an advanced copy of Engagement Fundraising and tried out some of the concepts she read about in the book. Learn more about MarketSmart at [link].

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10 traits of terrible major and legacy gift fundraisers

iMarketSmart

Sadly, I’ve witnessed all of these but I truly believe #1 is the worst. Here are my top 10 traits of terrible fundraisers that drive major donors away: . Showing up late; 9. Failing to do something that was promised; 8. Talking about how great they are at raising money; 7.

A digest of last year’s best blog posts (titled ‘The Best Of SmartIdeas’) is now available… for FREE.

iMarketSmart

If you’ve ever hoped for a digest of my best posts, today is your lucky day! Each year, my staff review the data to determine which posts were viewed and shared the most. Then they pull the copy from the most popular articles to create a brief, easy-to-read digest. You can get it now, for free.

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Here’s what’s missing from moves management.

iMarketSmart

Something about the term moves management has always made me feel uneasy. When I first heard the phrase I figured it was all about managing the moves fundraisers make to get donors to move forward in the decision-making process, and I was right.

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16 Simple Things Your Best Donors Want

iMarketSmart

Here’s my list of essential major donor needs that you must aim to fulfill: 1. Your best donors want you to do the important work they can’t or won’t do. Your best donors want you to give them the credit and praise for your achievements. They want to be the hero in the story, not you.

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Top 7 Fundraising In’s and Out’s for 2018

iMarketSmart

OUT: Making donors feel bad , twisting their arms, telling them to give ’til it hurts and shaming them. IN: Making donors feel good , treating them like people (not ATM’s), partnering and giving them the value they want.

How to get your donors to respond to you WITHOUT asking them to respond to you

iMarketSmart

Does polite persistence really work any more? When I first got into sales, my uncle told me that polite persistence was the key to achieving results. He said that I needed to be gentle but tenacious. Like water dripping on a rock again and again until it finally wears away the stone.

Are you a dictatorial boss or a dynamic nonprofit leader?

iMarketSmart

I think too many nonprofit leaders don’t really know how to lead. Instead they just boss people around. Having a title means you have authority. But authority isn’t the same as leadership. In fact, too often people get into positions of authority only to become dictators, not leaders.

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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Giving increased.7% but you won’t hear anyone celebrating and that’s really too bad

iMarketSmart

Remember when the Lilly School predicted at least a $13 billion drop in giving due to the Trump Tax Cut (which would have taken us to $376 billion)? Instead, we saw a.7% rise in real dollars to $427.71 billion. They should have egg on their faces for their doomsday prediction.

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Why major and legacy donors think your fundraising communications stink!

iMarketSmart

First, it is not all your fault. Well then, can we blame it on leadership? Leadership should share the burden of blame because fundraisers tend to feel a lot of pressure to do what’s always been done. In many cases they are driven (by leadership) to avoid trying anything new in case it doesn’t work.

Why major and legacy donors think your fundraising sucks.

iMarketSmart

First, it is not all your fault. Well then, can we blame it on leadership? Leadership should share the burden of blame because fundraisers tend to feel a lot of pressure to do what’s always been done. In many cases they are driven (by leadership) to avoid trying anything new in case it doesn’t work.

Now Available: Executive Summary (PDF) of My Webinar On ‘Fundraising Climate Change’

iMarketSmart

A few weeks ago I hosted a webinar about Fundraising Climate Change (a term I developed some time ago and included in my book titled Engagement Fundraising ).

Top 2 cringeworthy things some fundraisers say to major donor prospects (and what they might want to say instead)

iMarketSmart

“I’d like to meet you to update you / tell you what we do / tell you what we’ve been doing , etc.” ” I’ve had fundraisers approach me this way. It’s all about them and their organization.

When you should NOT conduct face-to-face fundraising

iMarketSmart

Essentially, there are two types of face-to-face fundraising. When fundraising staff meet with highly qualified, major and or legacy gift donors and/or prospects; When part-time staff stand on street corners interrupting passersby asking them to give (I call this ‘street spam’).

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A bunch of reasons why January is NOT necessarily the best time to ‘hit your donor’s mailbox’

iMarketSmart

Recently I saw a question posted on a discussion board that was inspired by a blog (NOT mine) titled: WHY YOU NEED TO HIT YOUR DONOR’S MAILBOX FIRST THING IN 2019. The question was: Planned/legacy giving marketing – when do you mail? Here’s the response I posted.