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Helping you qualify, cultivate and prioritize major donors and legacy supporters so you can have fun closing more gifts more efficiently.

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


Why you should worry less about reducing overhead and more about delivering value.

Fundraisers and donors are in a pickle. They have been unfairly subjected to a broken system for decades. It isn’t their fault, but it is… Read More


Is your annual fund tail wagging your major gift dog?

I always find it stupefying when a major gifts team tells me they need to get permission from the direct marketing team or higher up to… Read More


3 big reasons why nobody talks about the single most important fundraising tactic on earth.

Let’s jump right in….  The single most important fundraising tactic on earth is appointment setting. There! I said it! Don’t believe me? The late Jerold Panas… Read More


How are you doing compared to your peers?

Claire Axelrad, J.D., CFRE (an expert on fundraising, social media, and nonprofits) pulled together these nuggets from my Fundraising Report Card app. For that, I owe her… Read More


15 Reasons Why Colleges and Universities Better Start Raising Money Much FASTER!!!

According to Glassdoor, the following 15 companies no longer require college degrees. I think they are starting to recognize that they can hire smart people… Read More


Why your donor prospects lie to you and won’t accept your outreach

If you’re like me, you hate being sold. You can sense when a salesperson is trying to get you to do something you’re not quite… Read More


Why Response Rates Don’t Matter.

It always frustrates me to hear fundraisers or their consultants concern themselves with vanity metrics like response rates for lead generation efforts.  Honestly, I’m tired… Read More


Why Response Rates Don't Matter.

It always frustrates me to hear fundraisers or their consultants concern themselves with vanity metrics like response rates for lead generation efforts.  Honestly, I’m tired… Read More


7 ways to make sure your print designs win hearts and minds (not design awards)

Make the fonts at least 12 pt…. 14 point is even better for older eyes. Even though you might feel that it looks chunky, remember,… Read More


9 Tips to Help You Start and Maintain a Major or Legacy Giving Conversation

Before you can even get to ‘the ask’ you’ve got to start and maintain a conversation. Here are some pointers to do just that: Don’t… Read More


Donor target ask amounts offend me

I keep seeing software or wealth screening companies providing fundraisers with target ask amounts. I don’t get it. How on earth can a software provider… Read More


Want a copy of the 'best of my blog' book?

Some of you might already know that I’ve got a book coming out this year on September 18th titled Engagement Fundraising. Hooray! You can pre-order… Read More


Want a copy of the ‘best of my blog’ book?

Some of you might already know that I’ve got a book coming out this year on September 18th titled Engagement Fundraising. Hooray! You can pre-order… Read More


Fear or fear not… a massive disruption in the fundraising industry? That is the question!

It seems like everyone is saying they are disrupting this or that these days. Lots of people wear it as a badge of honor whether… Read More


Why you should think more than twice about allowing anonymous responses in donor surveys

Sometimes people ask us why we don’t allow donors to be anonymous when taking donor surveys. I guess they actually believe donors want to be… Read More


10 reasons why donors and fundraisers like Rollover IRA giving

We’re getting pretty good at marketing rollover IRAs here at MarketSmart. Here are some of the things we’ve learned as we’ve crafted a value proposition… Read More


Engagement Fundraising Podcast: The reviews are in!

Podcasting is pretty new for me. I’ve never done it before. But I’m thrilled to see the reviews for the Engagement Fundraising Podcast have been positive. Hooray!!… Read More


The difference between wealth screening and wealth appending

First, wealth screening. Over the past 10 to 20 years, wealth screening has become a common practice for fundraising shops. But staff should always remember… Read More


11 reasons why donors and organizations love charitable gift annuities

Why donors like CGAs CGAs help them feel good because they get to make a gift to support a cause they believe in while also… Read More


How nonprofit organizations can provide more value to generate more revenue in 5 simple steps.

In my last post, I tore up the concept of the disappearing donor. I proclaimed that donors are not disappearing. Rather, our sector’s fundraising practices are driving… Read More


The myth of the disappearing donor

Lots of folks think donors are disappearing.  While populations in the U.S. and other philanthropic countries are still increasing how can it be that donors… Read More


Stop SPAMMING your supporters with planned giving e-newsletters

Wiz-bang tech? I was talking to a fundraiser and he said, “We’ve got this cool system that includes pre-written estate planning e-newsletters I can send to… Read More


Complacency is a prelude to disaster

I know, change is hard. But I think too many people are afraid of change and disruption when they really should be afraid of being afraid…. Read More


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