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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.

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 …


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 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


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


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


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


Are you a piñata fundraiser?

Piñatas are decorative, papier-mâché containers usually filled with candy. I learned about them at children’s birthday parties. There, the children get a chance to whack ’em with a stick… Read More


9 reasons why people put money in holding pens (such DAFs or foundations) instead of giving directly right away

1. Indecisive. They want and need to give and they might have organizations in mind, but they haven’t decided where to give yet. 2. Fearful…. Read More


Don’t survey your donors unless you have cultivation ready to go

Let’s start at the beginning. Almost 10 years ago, when MarketSmart was a marketing agency for private sector businesses and I first offered to help… Read More


What everyone is missing about the 2018 $410 billion giving figure from Giving USA

$410 billion. Hooray! Right? Not so fast! Lots of folks are not so happy. So today I’m going to tell you what they are missing that… Read More


Focus on your donors’ lives, not their wallets

I came across this very interesting article a couple of weeks ago and thought I’d share it since it led me to a terrific new… Read More


Focus on your donors' lives, not their wallets

I came across this very interesting article a couple of weeks ago and thought I’d share it since it led me to a terrific new… Read More


The Best of SmartIdeas 2017 Book Now Available! – Get it free from us, quantities limited!

Each year we round up the most popular blog posts from the prior year to create a book for our readers. I’m excited to share… Read More


What do you really think about DONOR SCORING?

Here are some types of donor scores I’ve seen: Wealth scores Capacity scores Legacy gift likelihood scores Major gift likelihood scores Annual gift likelihood scores… Read More


How you can email your supporters every single day

You can, indeed, email your supporters every single day.  I realize you and your communications team members probably just fell out of your chairs. After… Read More