Smartideas

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

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 Amazon.com? 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 Amazon.com. 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


Blackbaud's Simple Formula for Change

Here’s a neat graphic from Blackbaud’s Idea Lab. The question is:  Are you an agent of change?        LIKE THIS BLOG POST?  PLEASE… Read More


It's Time to Kill "Cultivation"

I only use the word “cultivation” for fundraising because I want to ensure that fundraisers understand what I’m talking about. But you should know that I… Read More


First It Was Disabled Veterans … Now It's The Red Cross?

Last week the New York State Attorney General’s Office won a $25 million settlement stemming from an investigation of fundraising abuses by the Disabled Veterans… Read More


Is Populist Fundraising for You?

Some fundraisers and vendors of fundraisers will say that all donors and supporters deserve the same treatment. They call for social fundraising. They tell you… Read More


Your Supporters Deserve Your Best

I’m angry and I’m not kidding. Bad apples can spoil the bunch.   Yesterday fundraisers received a wake-up call. Quadriga Art, the self-proclaimed 70-year-old global… Read More


How to Ensure That Your Legacy Gift Supporters Don't Take You Out of Their Estate Plans

There must be thousands of ways to practice Engagement Fundraising. Here’s one that’s really fabulous because it zeros-in on an audience that will deliver a… Read More


Menus for Gifts

Red Bull Theater uses menus for major gifts. Red Bull Theater in New York City really got it right when they developed an outstanding themed… Read More


New Tool Helps Determine Your Asking Style So You Close More Gifts

Brian Saber, president of Asking Matters, has spent his career asking for donations on behalf of nonprofits. Now he’s really done it with a cool online… Read More


Why Not Take the Least Expensive Path from Point A to Point B?

One of our clients still spends 80% of his planned giving marketing budget on direct mail and only 20% with us even though our digital… Read More


When You Should Ignore Your Staff, Your Boss, Your Supporters and Your Volunteers

Most times when we test ugly marketing designs vs. pretty marketing designs, ugly wins. Recently Jeff Brooks rightly wrote a post about the effectiveness of ugly… Read More


I Added a Note to Subscribe and Guess What Happened?

Did you ever notice that recently I added a note at the bottom of each blog post? You can see it below. It recommends that… Read More


Does Your Organization Have a Soul?

Most businesses don’t have a soul.   They are cold and heartless. And, that’s probably (at least in part) why most businesses don’t succeed. But the… Read More


3 Big New Stats You Need to Know About Donor Advised Funds from Fidelity Charitable

        LIKE THIS BLOG POST?  PLEASE SHARE IT AND/OR SUBSCRIBE      


5 Ridiculously Simple Steps for Fundraising Success

When you boil it all down, attaining fundraising success is pretty simple if you just recognize that:   Step 1. Donors want to satisfy their… Read More


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