Straight talk about major, mid-level and legacy gift fundraising to help you be a better fundraiser

The most powerful motivators of major gifts and legacy gifts.

  RemembranceHonor Memorialize Pay tribute Fairness Right wrongs Give back HormonesOxytocin “the love hormone” Cortisol for focus Brain Neurons transmitting information Mirror neurons support empathy… Read More

Are you a technician or a facilitator?

The flow chart below makes me very uncomfortable. Here’s why: Science and experience have led me to realize that a donor’s objective is usually, first and foremost,… Read More

Consider using the word "consider" more often

Consider this. “Consider” is a very powerful word for fundraising. “Would you consider a gift in the amount of $25,000 to help fund this project?”… Read More

4 things you need to know to qualify your major gift and planned gift prospects

What follows are the 4 things you need to know in order to close more gifts faster: 1. Who has the capacity to give 2…. Read More

There's power in exclusivity but are you using it?

Unlike populist fundraisers (who treat everyone the same), engagement fundraisers aim to find and build relationships with “first class passengers”— people who are willing to “pay”… Read More

Why go to Amazon when you can get it here for free?

Each year my amazing staff grab the best, most popular blog posts from the prior year to create a book for our readers.  At last, the… Read More

The 4 levels of donor commitment according to Mal Warwick

For those of you who are new to the field, Mal Warwick played a tremendous leadership role in fundraising and direct marketing. In his book… Read More

If you don't read this right now, you'll miss out!

After reading that headline, did you feel a sense of urgency? Sorry to trick you but I wanted you to see what it felt like… Read More

How to discover planned gifts using interns because you can't afford a telemarketing firm

1. Make sure the intern cares about your mission 2. Have the intern view videos, read reports and talk to program staff (and beneficiaries) so… Read More

Here's why you should remove the word "bequest" from your vocabulary

The word bequest sucks when it comes to generating planned gift revenue. Stop using it. Here’s why: No one uses this word with their family… Read More

Top 10 reasons why donors like taking donor surveys

Here are the top 10 reasons why donors like taking donor surveys: 1. They want to be perceived as (or see themselves as) a helpful… Read More

4 things pizza and major gift fundraising have in common

A while back I wrote a blog post that included 5 best practices for delivering progress reports to major donors (sometimes including legacy gift supporters too)…. Read More

Don’t count promises. Measure your pipeline and count legacy gift dollars instead.

The goal for legacy gift fundraising is to raise money right? In sports they say it doesn’t matter how many points you score, it’s whether… Read More

19 reasons why nonprofit donor surveys are awesome

Here are 19 reasons why nonprofit donor surveys are awesome: They help you learn about why your donors care about your mission, how their life… Read More

Why the only thing to fear is fear itself.

I think nonprofits need to be more real. More genuine. Less formal. And, less afraid of being real and genuine (Tweet this!). Charity : Water,… Read More

You don’t own your donors

Here’s the deal folks. You don’t own your donors. Too many times I’ve heard chapters say that they don’t want to share planned giving leads… Read More

8 simple ideas to involve your donors and build deeper connections

L.M. Montgomery was a famous author in the early 1900’s. Her novels were internationally renowned.  She once said, “Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I… Read More

9 simple pointers for writing better emails and letters to your donors

I failed to get into business school. I hoped to be a business major at the University of Maryland in the 80’s. But my ability… Read More

Start Putting These Fundraising Words Everywhere Right Now

The words are listed down at the bottom. But to understand why you should put them everywhere, read this: Every single one of your supporters… Read More

Does an "empathy gap" exist among your donors?

A lot of charities tout the fact that they take care of their own. Marines helping marines! Cancer patients helping cancer patients! And so on…. Read More

Opportunities vs. Problems: Which will your donors support?

I’ll cut to the chase. People want to take advantage of opportunities more than they want to solve problems. Here’s how it works in fundraising. “Problem” messages:… Read More

Here’s one great legacy giving promotion

I love this legacy giving promotion. It’s actually a placeholder for your beer! You can find this along with its case study and many other… Read More

Imagine this.

Imagine this. Since you’re reading this, I’m betting you are someone who cares deeply about helping supporters with capacity (wealthy people) realize their philanthropic dreams. You… Read More

7 Solid Reasons Why You Should Kill Your Printed Planned Giving Newsletter

I know, I know… you love your printed planned giving newsletter. After all, it’s an easy marketing option (especially if you buy them from a vendor who… Read More

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