Sleepless in 2013?
It’s 100 percent looking at your housefile, looking at your data, determining where the resources are. Before I was director of new media, I was director of DRTV. So I can tell you there’s a vast difference between our constituents who are coming in through DRTV and the ones who are coming in online. However, after doing some thorough analysis, I can tell you that our most profitable donors are the ones who give both online and through the mail.
You just want to make sure that your messages are consistent, and it goes back to the first point about branding. It doesn’t matter if it’s on DRTV or social media, to make a donor want to give, the message has to be there, the confidence has to be there that this is something that’s legitimate, verifiable.
A Question From the Audience
DG: Tom, great topics and great responses! We do have one question that has come in. Sharon is asking, when interviewing to recruit board members, is there a list of skills or characteristics that you should consistently ask for?
JJ: It’s reliant to some degree on the organization and where it is in its life cycle. But the board members have a fiduciary responsibility, there’s the legal, the hiring and firing of the CEO, the financial piece, and the delegation of a plan to the CEO. And then there are the skills that we’ve been mentioning: fundraising and being ambassadors. You don’t want to bring someone on board who doesn’t feel comfortable being an ambassador, a fundraiser and, of course, a donor. That’s going to create a challenge.
Those would be the core skills, and then there’d be the nuances of whatever that organization is; how sophisticated it is; and whatever it needs at that time might vary in terms of occupations, skills and specifics. But they have to be able to make those tough decisions, to ensure that transparency, to make the gift and ask for the gift.