16 Provocative Ideas That Will Raise More Money
I am just back from an intense four days at the 48th annual AFP International Conference on Fundraising. And I listened to some of fundraising’s most brilliant — and provocative — leaders. Here’s what’s on the mind of some of our smartest thinkers.
Do consider these ideas NOW. They may go against your typical practices. But I promise, absolutely, that you will raise more money if you implement them.
Go all out for monthly donors on your homepage
Monthly donors are worth gold to you. On average, they will stay for 10 YEARS. Put the ask right on your homepage. The ideal monthly appeal ties a monthly ask to something specific. “$31 a month will do xxxx.” (Harvey McKinnon)
Focus on fewer — not more donors
You don’t make more money by having more donors. The more donors you accumulate, the less profitable your fundraising program. (Penelope Burk)
Encourage restricted giving
Restricted asks raise more money. Period. We are holding our philanthropy back, because we are asking for unrestricted rather than restricted. (Penelope Burk)
Get rid of the words
Put your whole message in the first 150 words. The rest of your copy just backs it up. (Tom Ahern)
Get rid of 'unmet needs,' 'programs,' 'services'
Write like you are an outsider to your organization. Get rid of the boring, obtuse jargon. Jargon is a flame retardant! (Tom Ahern)
Make your case like a series of ads
Add photos while you get rid of words. Create your case or your fundraising materials with the fewest words and the best photos. (Tom Ahern)
Hire more fundraisers.
Saying, “We can’t hire any more staff” is stupid. Each additional fundraising staffer upticks gross fundraising revenue. Period. (Penelope Burk)
Give your fundraising staff raises
Money is the No. 1 reason fundraising staff leaves. Investing in retention of staff will make you money. Retention boosts profit. (Penelope Burk)