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

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Why you should use nostalgia to promote more giving

I recently stumbled upon a neat paper titled Nostalgia: The Gift That Keeps Giving. Here’s a summary: Overview 1. Nostalgia is a very personal, social emotion that… Read More


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

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… Read More


Why fundraisers should take some lessons from stockbrokers

I stumbled on an article written for stockbrokers (financial advisors) that I found interesting because it recounted the top three reasons why clients leave: Poor… Read More


What is 3-to-1 Major Gift Fundraising?

Let’s face it, your supporters want something in exchange for their cash. But, sadly, many nonprofits don’t give. This compelled me to come up with… Read More


12 questions to ask yourself to avoid disrespecting your supporters

In the for profit world they call it customer service. All of us get frustrated when we feel slighted or disrespected. Yet, sadly, nonprofits are… Read More


10 Ways to Use Body Language to Close More Major Gifts

Almost 50 years ago, Albert Mehrabian figured out that our words matter least and our body language matters most in face-to-face communications.   His landmark… Read More


5 thoughts that might lead your supporters to feel donor remorse

Here are some of the thoughts crossing your donors’ minds while you’re asking them to support your cause: Will they say thank you or just… Read More


Why you need to think of yourself as a facilitator

Supporters give to satisfy a need. Supporters give because they trust your organization to satisfy that need. Supporters give because they see you, your colleagues,… Read More


Is your nonprofit organization really that special?

No. Sorry. It isn’t. For example, if you search for environmental organizations on Wikipedia, you’ll find the following list: Why should anyone make a major gift… Read More


Even fundraisers can "get schooled" by a 4th-grade teacher

These days you can’t be average. Average efforts deliver average results. If you want to raise more major gifts and generate planned gifts: Be exceptional… Read More


Here’s a job description for a major gift or legacy gift lead outreach associate

Last summer I wrote a very thorough post titled: How To Structure and Staff Your Planned Giving Department for the 21st Century. Ever since I’ve… Read More


3 reasons why you need to stop worrying about the darn tax law!!!

Tons of writers in major media have been fretting about the new tax law. “Tax bill could turn philanthropy into a pursuit only for the… Read More


Donor Psychology: Do you know what really makes your supporters feel good?

Funny thing about fundraising is that it all boils down to this: Making sure that your supporters feel good! I know, I know. In the… Read More


4 big reasons why you should not ask for money when you survey your supporters

Over the summer I was admonished by an “expert” in the field. I’m used to it by now. I’ve been helping nonprofits (instead of private sector… Read More


How big is the average major gift?

“What’s your average?” I found myself asking that question in meetings with clients all the time. What surprised me was that most didn’t know the… Read More


Introducing the First Ever Major Gifts Fundraising Benchmark Study

Today, I’m thrilled to introduce the 2017 Major Gifts Fundraising Benchmark Study. The research was led by Melissa S. Brown and supported by the Association of Philanthropic… Read More


Can Penelope Burk predict the future?

Do you know Penelope Burk? I first found out about Penelope Burk when I was running a marketing agency that solely helped private sector companies (not… Read More


Do you include lists of other donors in your marketing?

Safety in numbers. Not all that long ago, humans lived in tribes and clans for safety. So, today, it’s no surprise that people still maintain… Read More


7 simple ways to engender fondness among your supporters for yourself and your nonprofit’s cause

People are more likely to be persuaded by people we like. So, no matter how worthy your cause is, if your supporters don’t like you,… Read More


Why Oprah Winfrey gives money to build schools in Africa (the 8 components of impactful giving)

You might have known that Oprah was a philanthropist; but did you know why? Most people think they know Oprah Winfrey, one of the richest self-made… Read More


REVEALED: Jerry Panas' secrets of attracting wealthy supporters

In January, Inside Philanthropy interviewed legendary fundraiser Jerold Panas to discover his secrets of attracting wealthy supporters. Here’s his list: It isn’t about your organization… Read More


Finally revealed, a profile of the ideal major gift officer

Thanks to the Education Advisory Board, we now know what the ideal major gift officer looks like. Their Advancement Forum sought to understand what makes… Read More


The more things change, the more they stay the same

I was wondering who might have created the first survey ever.  My search led me to Charles the Great, the “Father of Europe.” Apparently, in… Read More


Almost four years ago I declared: "The Fundraising Pyramid Is DEAD!"

Recently I was reminded of a blog post I wrote four years ago that got a lot of attention. Some of the reactions were not so kind…. Read More


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