How to Ask Your Current Donors for Bequests – Tactfully!
Aug26

How to Ask Your Current Donors for Bequests – Tactfully!

Did you know organizations in the UK, Canada, and Australia raise more money with bequests than we do in the US? Fundraising expert Tom Ahern believes that the answer may be as simple as not having a marketing plan to ask for those bequests. A simple plan might include: Writing a vision statement that lets donors know how their bequest will help the organization for future generations. Identifying your best donors. Creating a bequest...

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Creating Your Nonprofit’s Version of the #IceBucketChallenge
Aug21

Creating Your Nonprofit’s Version of the #IceBucketChallenge

It’s the question that thousands of nonprofit communications and development staff will be asked over the next several weeks: What’s our version of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? Of course, the real questions behind that are “How come we aren’t raising a bazillion dollars online?” and “Why can’t we get our supporters to make videos of themselves about our cause and share them with their...

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What Does Raise Awareness Really Mean Anyway? [FREE Webinar]
Aug20

What Does Raise Awareness Really Mean Anyway? [FREE Webinar]

Executive directors and especially boards of directors love for you to “raise awareness” about your cause. But what does that really mean anyway? Surely not a massive, multimedia advertising campaign like corporate America would do, because you don’t have that kind of a budget. And surely not a door-to-door canvassing campaign like politicians do, because you don’t have an army of volunteers. Being told to...

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Year-End Fundraising Decisions to Make Now
Aug12

Year-End Fundraising Decisions to Make Now

I’m coaching a fundraising team at a national nonprofit that wants to revamp its annual communications calendar. As part of that process, we are looking at their editorial calendar for their year-end fundraising campaign, which will include direct mail, email, and social media. Before they can develop that plan, however, they have several strategic decisions to make, and this is the time of year to be making them. If you want to...

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How to Perform the “You” Test for Donor-Centered Communications – Do You Pass?
Jul23

How to Perform the “You” Test for Donor-Centered Communications – Do You Pass?

You know that donor-centered communications are vital to getting and keeping your supporters. During the coaching and feedback sessions for our fundraising writing e-clinics with Tom Ahern, he uses this little trick to instantly see how many times nonprofits address the supporter specifically by seeing how many times they use the word “you” in their writing. Here is how he does it in Microsoft Word. Find the...

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If You Write Direct Mail Appeals In-House, You’ll Want to Know About This
Jul17

If You Write Direct Mail Appeals In-House, You’ll Want to Know About This

If you have been part of our community for any length of time, you know Tom Ahern and how awesome he is at writing fundraising copy – especially direct mail appeals. (If you are new here, “Welcome!”) In fact, his direct mail appeal e-clinic has been the most popular e-clinic we offer and consistently sells out each time. (Because of the personal attention Tom gives to participants, we have to limit the number who can...

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