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

Your Donor Engagement Experience Sucks!

If your donor engagement experience sucks, your organization might be in real big trouble because donors have seriously impressive memories. According to Penelope Burk, 46%… Read More

The Problem with Too Many Planned Giving Leads

It’s a good problem to have. But I’ve heard people tell me they’d rather have less, more qualified leads (ready to make a legacy giving… Read More

How Tracy Makes the Donor the Hero

It ain’t about you and your organization. Of course, you are great. But the donor funds your efforts. Without the donor, you wouldn’t even be… Read More

Donor Retention

I think we’re in trouble.   No, I’m not worried about the economy. It’s not the recent jobs report either.   I’m worried because the… Read More

Do Only Lazy Fundraisers Avoid Chat Tools?

You may or may not have noticed that we have a chat tool on the bottom right corner of our website here at MarketSmart. It’s… Read More

Why Your Organization Needs to Change

“It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.” – Charles Darwin  … Read More

Why Your Donors Say "No" and What to Do About It

Jedi and their apprentices are shown practicing throughout the Star Wars series. And that’s no surprise because everyone knows that practice makes perfect. Deep down,… Read More

“You’re in Sales! Get Over It!” or The Difference Between Fundraising and Selling

A while back, I wrote a blog post about the difference between buying and giving. I said, “There is no difference between buying and giving.  So,… Read More

The Best Way to Ensure That No One Reads Your Stuff

Recently I told my writer that most people won’t read her body copy. That hurt her feelings. She was upset and reacted harshly to my… Read More

How Gritty Are You?

I think “grit” is more important than talent or skill.   Grit is courage, strength of character and “stick-to-it-ive-ness.”   Here’s a neat test to… Read More

Why Better Marketers Raise More Money!

Some will say it’s unfair. Heart disease (the disease that killed my father when he was only 63) kills almost 600,000 people each year.  Yet,… Read More

Know Me, Like Me, Trust Me

Fundraisers can learn a lot from private business experts and entrepreneurs. One of my favorite bloggers, Thomson Dawson, recently wrote a post about his strategy for… Read More

Two Smart Ways to Acquire New Major Donors

Recently I was asked to attend a nonprofit’s Board of Directors meeting.  My client wanted me to present some data about the results we’ve been… Read More

The Real Secret to Success is Failure

1. “Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly.” – Robert F. Kennedy 2. “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that… Read More

Why the Heck Should a Donor Give You One Red Cent?

If you have 18 minutes to spare, I implore you to spend it watching this speech.   In just 18 minutes Simon Sinek will help you… Read More

Now Amazon Gives 0.5% of Your Supporters' Purchase Amounts to YOUR Organization

Do you think your supporters buy stuff on Dumb question, huh?   Well did you know that your organization could get 1/2% of your… Read More

What Can Your Major Gifts Department Learn From the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge?

Nothing. Well… almost nothing. Here’s what your major gifts department can learn.   1. The ice bucket challenge is an awareness and fundraising strategy that… Read More

Identify What Works in Your Marketing and Do More of It!

One of my clients is having fantastic success with the following: Moving single donation supporters to become perpetual donors Increasing the size of each donation… Read More

Convenience Trumps Everything

Convenience is powerful.   Look at Look at McDonalds. Look at any other person or company from whom you buy products or services. If they provide convenience,… Read More

5 Ways to Use Events to Generate Enormous Planned Gifts

1. Have an announcer point out who among the attendees is already in the Legacy Society (ask permission first).   2. Mention, “if you are… Read More

New Study: Older Donors Are Just as Likely to Give to Charities Online as Younger Donors

I can remember making the switch from FOR-PROFIT marketing to NONPROFIT marketing. We were like bulls in a China shop. We broke all the orthodoxies… Read More

How to End Your Obsession With Direct Mail (and Why)

Love! Ahh…. love. Is there anything better than love? Love is great. But when it goes too far and becomes an obsession, there’s a problem…. Read More

Building Awareness for Planned Giving is Easier and Less Expensive Than Ever

Promoting planned giving doesn’t have to be expensive. If you have traffic on your website, you have a chance to promote planned giving for pennies… Read More

Thanks for the Legacy Gift…Here's a Pin!

Do you give out pins?   When I informed a nonprofit about my legacy gift intention, all I really got was a pin.   “Whoopie!”… Read More

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