results

Smartideas

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

Are you doubling down on a low-dollar fundraising strategy?

A client recently told us she was being asked by her leadership to consider cancelling her MarketSmart subscription.  She said that last year, during Q4,… Read More


How to understand your donor’s consideration process so you generate more major gifts

First things first. Too often fundraisers, board members, and nonprofit leaders spend way too much time thinking and talking about their organization’s or their employee’s… 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


3 tips for your fundraising career

1. Always add value. The best way to ensure that you have a job all the time is to make it a point to consistently… Read More


Imagine This…

Did you have a grandmother or elderly aunt, uncle or friend?  I did. Imagine if I sent mine letters and emails every once in a while. Imagine that… Read More


Thanking vs. Appreciating

Mechanized thank you’s. I’ve been thinking that, perhaps, too many organizations have turned thanking into an automated obligation. They realize it’s something they’re supposed to… 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


Beware of the fundraising Illuminati

The Illuminati is the name given to real and fictitious secret society groups claiming special knowledge or enlightenment.  In the nonprofit sector, such groups of… Read More


You Can’t Marry Your Donors After the First Date

Donors build relationships with nonprofits the same way they build relationships with people. Slowly! Step 1: Meet through friends Step 2: Chat a bit Step… Read More


Today I think I’ll take a victory lap. Will you join me?

I get things wrong all the time. Back in 1993 when I quit my first ‘real’ job in the newspaper business I predicted printed newspapers… Read More


The 8 Components of Engagement Fundraising

There are eight components of my innovative fundraising methodology: 1. Accepting the Pareto principle We’ve called it the 80/20 rule, but it’s more like the… 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


Will You Become an Engagement Fundraiser?

For the sake of donors, volunteers, advocates, and members everywhere who want to change the world but need an organization bigger than them to get… Read More


The Top 3 Reasons Spray-And-Pray Fundraising Communications Fail

The traditional spray and pray marketing communications tactics just don’t work. Here’s why: 1. They are Irrelevant In this day and age, people get bombarded… Read More


The 6 most read parts of any major gift letter

I’m always a bit baffled when I see fundraising letters that fail to take into consideration the following. After all, research by Professor Siegfried Vogele has clearly proven… Read More


You Don’t Need Data, You Need Actionable Intelligence

You have plenty of data. That data probably includes donation recency, frequency, and monetary value. You might also track involvement information (participation in events, volunteerism,… Read More


How You Can Build Relationships With More Hi-Value Supporters at Lower Costs

Your job is tough! If you’re like most fundraisers, you’re already working hard. You don’t have enough time, you’re pulled in too many directions, and… Read More


6 reasons why some donors prefer to stay anonymous

In case you’ve ever wondered why some donors prefer to stay anonymous, here are 6 proven reasons why: 1. They do not want fundraisers from… Read More


Follow This Example To See How Automated Cultivation Can Work To Meet Donor Needs.

If you were a fundraiser at my alma mater seeking a donation from me for a new building, a progressive campaign might look like this:… 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


4 types of supporters that self-qualify their interest in being in your portfolio/caseload.

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you probably know that I think donor surveys are great for qualifying and prioritizing your supporters… Read More


Too much major and legacy gift fundraising is focused on HOW when it should be focused on WHY.

What the heck am I talking about? Major gift fundraising communications (especially legacy gift marketing) tend to focus too much on showing supporters how they… 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


What The Heck Is Progressive Profiling And Why You Need To Do It?

It’s about their timing, not yours. Fundraisers, as well as their organization’s leadership and board members, need to come to terms with the fact that… Read More


Get smarter!
Get smarter with the SmartIdeas blog

Subscribe to our blog today and get actionable fundraising ideas delivered straight to your inbox!