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Wednesday, March 5, 2014
Data published last year in the Chronicle of Philanthropy shows this trend clearly: online donations to nonprofits increased 14% in 2012 relative to 2011, while overall donations increased by only 1.5% in the same period.
But this trend has been uneven. The American Lung Association, for example, received nearly a third of its private donations through the internet in 2012—but the median large organization raised only 2.1% of its donations online in that period.
Wednesday, February 19, 2014
There is an important distinction between more data and better data. What is better data? Information that allows nonprofits to create actionable changes to their workflow and structure.
Of course, data is only as good as the database used to manage it. Think of your database as your “institutional memory.” Having an excellent memory enables you to measure progress, identify new objectives, and demonstrate results to prospective donors. Data that is difficult to retrieve, stored in multiple places, and very likely to contain errors is relatively meaningless. Accurate and accessible data, however, allows organizations to quantify the effectiveness of their initiatives and adjust their methodology accordingly. It also allows you to do more with less, something a majority of nonprofits are regularly challenged to do.
Wednesday, February 12, 2014
Director of Engagement
But SVP Arizona Fast Pitch presented by Social Venture Partners Arizona (SVPAZ) helps select Valley nonprofits do just that.
Fast Pitch is a fun-filled evening where local nonprofits give three-minute pitches about their nonprofits.
Wednesday, January 29, 2014
Program Coordinator Sr.,
Nonprofit Leadership Alliance
ASU Lodestar Center
It is not easy to pull this together for the national organization or the local campus. ASU’s program conducts an annual face-to-face scholarship campaign for financial support to attend the Institute fondly called AMI. This year, the Alliance Management Institute was held in Chicago during the coldest storm on record with -12 to -45 degree weather. ASU made it there and back with no trouble at all when many campuses did not. This was a teachable environment relying on flexibility, trust and the professional qualities needed during changing times.
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
American Lung Association
Some Board Members can give lots of money, whether it be their own or that from their company, and come with tremendous financial support. Other Board Members feel that their knowledge base or background is sufficient because they are bringing new skills to the organization. The best Board Members, in my opinion, are the ones who bring passion about the nonprofit’s mission and are willing to share this with others.
Sharing passion is something that you can not equate to any financial amount. These Board Members can make introductions to companies, open doors to new sponsors and recruit top-notch volunteers. They do this by sharing their connection to the organization with others and once their passion oozes, it’s hard to stop this contagious feeling. People want to be around others doing great things, right? Well then send these Board Members out in the community because people like hearing from volunteers sharing a story, rather than a staff member pitching for money.
Wednesday, January 15, 2014
ASU Lodestar Center
Question: We would like to increase our donations. Is the upcoming Arizona Gives Day a good opportunity to do this?
In the days leading up to December 10, my email and Face book page lit up with information and requests to participate in 2013’s Colorado Gives Day (coloradogives.org). The requests came from organizations with which I have a connection as a former staffer, or in one case, by my son who works for the organization. His appeal was my favorite – he asked all his family members across the country to donate to his environmental advocacy group in lieu of a birthday gift to him. Does this represent a new level of maturity on his part?
I made my modest gifts, despite living in Arizona, and these, combined with over 88,000 other gifts raised over $20 million in one 24 hour period to support Colorado nonprofit organizations. Wow! The organizations I supported raised $55,000, $35,000 and $25,000.
Arizona nonprofit organizations can participate in our own Arizona Gives Day on April 9, 2014. Presented by the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits (arizonanonprofits.org), and Arizona Grantmakers Forum (www.arizonagrantmakersforum.org) , and sponsored by FirstBank, Arizona Gives Day provides a terrific opportunity to use the power of social media to build support from existing and new donors and contribute to a thriving philanthropic culture in our own state.
Wednesday, January 8, 2014
Vice President of
Fundraising outcomes (i.e. dollars raised) are the most commonly used metric for evaluating fundraising staff, but they are not the only metrics that we as managers should track. While the amount of money coming in the door is obviously an important measure, there are several inputs that should also be considered, which I would argue are as essential. First and foremost, fundraising is about one thing – relationships. Donors give to organizations they feel connected to. Yes, people occasionally give to organizations after a one-time catastrophic event, because a friend asked them to, or they received a particularly compelling card in the mail, and so on. But when it comes to recurring gifts that grow in size over time – and into very large major gifts – those donors have been carefully engaged and cultivated. This level of relationship building does not happen by sitting in an office filling out reports, or by dutifully answering the deluge of internal email we all receive. Meaningful sustained giving is the product of evocative communications, out of office visits with prospective donors, and from making strategic well-planned solicitations. These must be tracked and evaluated.