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Smartideas

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

What Are You Doing to Change?

“If you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got.”   I don’t know who came up with that quote. I… Read More


The top qualification and prioritization data points you should consider before you reach out to your supporters to build a caseload

Recently we surveyed a few hundred fundraisers to find out what they felt were the most (and least) important data points for qualifying and prioritizing… Read More


3 simple steps to break your transactional, spray-and-pray fundraising addiction

Nonprofits tend to get addicted to transactions. Of course addictions are hard to break. But that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t be broken at all. Too… Read More


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

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… Read More


4 simple concepts that can help you raise sophisticated transformational gifts

I like this blog post written by Greg Ring over at The Giving Crowd.  In it, he outlines his Four C’s of Successful Fundraising. Although,… Read More


How to stop over-thinking and start engaging

Confucius said, “Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated.” Engagement fundraising is so darn simple too! You don’t need to over-think… Read More


How Your Restaurant Waiter Can Teach You About Fundraising

The theory of reciprocity is powerful.  And nowhere is it displayed more dramatically than in restaurants every day. Think about it.  Your waiter is basically… Read More


16 Simple Things Your Best Donors Want

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… Read More


How to think about major gifts

Ditto! That’s all I can say when I read Veritus Group’s blog articles. Ditto! These guys (Richard Perry and Jeff Schreifels) totally ‘get’ it! For… Read More


Here’s What Supporters “Buy” When They Donate to Charity

I think buying and donating are the same.  Here’s why.  When I give money to a charity, I am buying: A chance to be moved by… Read More


How I leave voicemail messages that get returned

Generally here’s how I leave messages that get returned: APPRECIATION: I say ‘thank you’ (and I get sort of ’emotional and gracious’ in my tone……. Read More


The Definitive Menu of Engagement Fundraising Marketing Channels

We know that it’s not always easy to determine where you should be focusing your efforts (and your dollars). So we developed this nifty little… Read More


Now you can hear me on the ‘Freakshow’!

My pal Brady Josephson (self-proclaimed charity nerd) had me on his relatively new podcast titled: The Generosity Freakshow. I encourage you to take a listen…. Read More


Are you ready for the 24/7 donor?

Accenture – the world’s largest consulting firm – says that we’re in the era of the “nonstop consumer”. According to their website, “A customer’s path… Read More


Free Download: Engagement Fundraising – Introduction and Chapter 1!

Today’s your chance to read the introduction and chapter 1 of Engagement Fundraising for free! We are offering a free PDF of the book up… Read More


Are you avoiding your donors?

Too often I’ve seen some ‘fundraisers’ do whatever they can to avoid actually talking to donors. “I can’t call ’em yet. I’m waiting for the… Read More


Is your job really to raise money?

Og Mandino, author of The Greatest Salesman in the World wrote: “The only certain means of success is to render more and better service than… 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


Top 10 Reasons Why Gift Officers Won’t Make Outbound Calls to Donors

The reasons why fundraisers won’t make outbound calls to donors are because they are: FEARFUL: They fear rejection. CONFUSED: They don’t know what to say…. Read More


My Simplest Explanation of How Engagement Fundraising Works

Engagement fundraising (a phrase I coined many years ago) is powerful. I’ve been talking about this for about 10 years (ever since I revamped my marketing… Read More


How success and happiness relate to the raising of money

Everyone wants success and happiness in their lives. Sadly, too many people are misled or misdirected by the media and teachers about what success and …


The 8 core components of engagement fundraising and why you desperately need them

Most fundraising is based on what I call “single shot” strategies. For instance, it’s an event, gala or golf outing. Or, perhaps it’s a mailing,… Read More


Engagement Fundraising in 7 simple bullet-points

Focus- Focus your marketing (especially your expensive marketing like face-to-face meetings) on people who have a lot of money Generate leads- Generate highly-qualified leads among… Read More


Top 8 reasons why you might want to read my new book: Engagement Fundraising

Here are 8 reasons why you might want to read my new book: Engagement Fundraising …


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