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…

No Hard Choices = No Strategy and No Leadership

Just the other day a nonprofit communications director showed me her brand-new marketing strategy. Her organization’s leaders, the executive director and a committee of board members, had commissioned the strategy from a consultant. After several  months of work, the strategy was delivered to staff to implement. But the document I saw contained very little leadership…

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…

9 Tips for Creating an Editorial Calendar Chock Full of What Your Community Wants

Diane Greenhalgh joins us again with some more great ideas on creating content for your nonprofit. ~Kivi Guest Post by Diane Greenhalgh of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association On this blog and in her webinars and book, Kivi talks about how you should try to become your community’s favorite nonprofit because research has shown that people give two-thirds of…

Return to Spray and Pray?

Just about every nonprofit marketing consultant I know, yours truly included, ridicules the idea of “spray and pray” marketing, where you throw out as much stuff as you can at “the general public” and hope that some of it hits the right people.  Nonprofits can’t afford to be that wasteful of their time and money.…

PHENOMENAL COMMUNICATIONS POWER…itty bitty living space

Have you ever seen Disney’s Aladdin? The Genie, played by Robin Williams, has just been released from his lamp by Aladdin and is explaining what a genie is and what he can do. Genie has all of this power at his disposal, but he’s contained in a tiny little lamp. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v57sUtvNa5o Your email subject lines, social…

Your Ideas, Examples, and Problems with Awareness Raising Campaigns

Next month we’ll be hosting the Nonprofit Blog Carnival, and our theme is Raising Awareness. You may know that I am not the biggest fan of “awareness raising” as a goal in and of itself.  Unless you have some clue about how you plan to connect the dots between the raised awareness and your ultimate…

BRIEF: Make a Bigger Impact by Saying Less [Book Review]

Nonprofits do some pretty complex work. As a communications professional, it’s your job to simplify that work into language and images that others can understand and be motivated by — in as few words as possible. In his new book, Brief: Make a Bigger Impact by Saying Less (Amazon link),  Joe McCormack argues that being brief…

5 Leadership Failures That Hurt Communications and Fundraising

Communications directors and development directors are not magicians or miracle workers, and yet many executive directors and boards seem to think they should be able to pull rabbits out of hats and turn water into wine. Too often, when I coach communications directors through their daily challenges, I find that their jobs are being made…

Download Your Multi-Channel Fundraising Campaign Worksheet [FREE]

We’ve added another advice and tips page to the website – this one covers online fundraising. So whether you are just getting started with raising money online or if you are looking for more advanced ideas, we’ve got you covered. Haven’t accepted online donations before? We’ll show you where to start with getting your website…

Write a Better Case for Support and Direct Mail Appeals

Fundraising expert Tom Ahern is cranking out some great stuff for us this year! We just finished his Donor Newsletters That Raise More Money e-clinic and July brings two more training opportunities for you. The Case for Support Writing a Fabulous Case for Support starts July 9th. You can join us for just the first…

What Questions Do You Include in Donor Surveys?

I’m getting a lot of questions about questions — the ones you should ask donors or other supporters of your work in surveys. First, yes, surveying your donors a couple of times a year is a great idea. It not only gives you information you can use to adjust your programs and how you market…