What has been your organization’s major challenge when it comes
to soliciting major gifts?
— FS Advisor, March 14
My biggest hurdle has been getting to an actual, live person who can get me in the door. If I can get in front of someone’s face, I can usually get at least some donation. But more often than not, I wind up in “voice mail hell” or leaving messages several times with no response. That’s the biggest
frustration to me.
— Scott M. Brooks,
Newspaper in Education
What’s the most useful piece of information you took away from [the] DMA Nonprofit Federation 2006 Annual Conference
in Washington, D.C.?
— FS Advisor, Feb. 21
The keynote speech by J. Walker Smith from Yankelovich was high energy, interesting and contained a wealth of great examples of demographic and lifestyle trends. His suggestion to focus on “quality, intangibles, time and not on stuff” should make us consider our offerings and copy to ensure its relevance to this newly emerging consumer (and donor) market.
— Christopher Barry,
senior vice president,
Newport Creative Communications
Do you treat your major donors like friends? How do you nurture those
— FS Advisor, Nov. 22, 2005
Friends are typically thanked once for a gift, maybe with a phone call or note, and the acknowledgement isn’t tracked for future references. Strong fundraisers, on the other hand, find multiple ways to thank donors and know precisely how those acknowledgements were delivered. Likewise, you probably don’t have friends’ detailed financial information and credit card numbers at your fingertips. The best fundraisers know it’s unacceptable to have a Rolodex of personal donor information sitting on their desk. Donors deserve careful handling of their information. Gift acknowledgement and donor details are best kept in an established, secure donor-management system.