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Report: Biggest Challenges to Major Gift Fundraising Success

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Nonprofits clearly see the potential that major gift fundraising…

How to Drive Major Donors Away and Kill Off Your Major Gifts Program

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Hint: Your donor says to you, "I'm not an ATM." Have you ever…

Top 10 Year-End Fundraising Strategies for 2014

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What kind of appeal and message will make your 2014 donors respond…

Top 10 Major Gift Fundraising Trends for 2014-15

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Fundraising is changing!  Everything is shifting these days.Donors…

Gail's Guide to Brilliant Major Gift Cultivation Events

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You’re having events all the time – to open doors, make friends,…

How to Ask Your Donors for Feedback So They'll Love You Even More

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Have you tried asking your donors for feedback?This is a…

6 Steps You Can Take Today to Improve Your Donor Retention

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We all know that donor retention is where the easy money is for…

Two Simple Questions Guaranteed to Improve Your Fundraising Results

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“Too much to do and too little time to do it.” That’s the…

If You Ever Want to Raise Big Money, Do This Now!

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I've been thinking a lot about major gifts this week preparing…

Why Board Members Love Advice Visits

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Why do board members love Advice Visits?

Because they find them to be a relief.

If you send your board members out into the community connecting with important people and asking for advice, they'll usually be very happy.

It's because they don't have to do a long, detailed presentation. And they are not comfortable doing that. They don't feel that they know enough.

They ARE comfortable with the idea of seeking advice and input.

After all, they are the community representatives on the board.

It is totally appropriate for your board members to be asking other community leaders for their best thinking on how to achieve the organization’s goals.

They do not have to present a detailed case for support in order to be effective personal advocates for the cause.

Questions to Ask in an Advice Visit

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Here's more on the subject of Advice Visits: If you are talking …

Three Rules for Successful Advice Visits

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Advice Visits are my GOLDEN KEY to opening any donor or potential donor's heart to my cause.

I wrote about Advice Visits in my newsletter this week. (if you are not a subscriber, you can sign up here.)

I have used Advice Visits time and time again. They are based on the old adage:

"If you want money, ask for advice.

If you want advice, ask for money."

Rule One: Make Sure You Are Interesting, Not Boring
As you tell your person about your cause and seek his advice, you should be watching carefully for his reaction.

If your prospect seems to not be very interested in your cause, then you should not drag on.. If you are perceived as boring or droning on and on, you will never be welcomed back!

The kiss of death for any fundraiser is to be boring. You are the one listening, not talking!

What's the Goal of Your Fundraising Visit?

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One of my favorite blogs (For Impact) is talking today about making fundraising calls.

I hear so many times how excited my friends are when they manage to actually get the appointment.

In their excitement, they forget about planning the details of the visit.

I remember years ago when I was a beginning fundraiser at Duke University. I was walking down the street with the VP for Development at Duke. He was going to accompany me on a fundraising visit.

I was pretty excited but also nervous because he was the head honcho. And I will never forget what he asked me: "what are your goals for this visit?"

Prevent Donor Attrition and Keep Your Donors

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I had the pleasure of interviewing Simone Joyeaux, one of the great fundraising gurus of all time, this morning for the Telesummit on Fall 09 Fundraising Strategies.When I asked Simone to comment on the difficult giving environment for this fall, she said it was really a "wake-up call" to us. Fundraisers have been able to get away with poor fundraising practices in the past because of a booming economy and plenty of donors. But now, when donors are cutting back, our bad habits are coming home to roost.Simone mentioned several bad habits and poor practices that are driving away donors. In fact, she noted that two out of three first-time donors DON'T make another gift! And that we are in a "donor retention crisis" right now with so many of our current donors slipping away because of bad fundraising habits.Did you know that it costs up to 10 times more to secure a NEW DONOR than it does to retain a CURRENT donor? So where do you think we should be spending our time, energy and our focus?Donors think we are treating them like "ATM machines," says Simone. When we go to them for money, money, money, they resent it and reward us by dropping off.

Make a great fundraising call - when to leave and what to say

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How long should I stay when I visit a donor? You need to be sure…

How to make a fundraising visit

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I never know what really to talk about when I make these calls. …