Reflections on 10 Years: October 2005
FundRaising Success published its first issue in November 2003, which makes this our 10-year anniversary year. To celebrate, we’ll be taking a look back at past issues throughout the year.
Following are some words of wisdom culled from the October 2005 issue.
- “We try to get more focused on the donor and what the donor wants and how the donor wants to deal with our organization … to treat donors less according to how much they give and more according to how they want to be treated.”
From Debra Neuman, then senior vice president of external relations at CARE USA (cover story, “Lives in the Balance”):
- “It was particularly clear to me in the tsunami, which was probably everybody’s biggest disaster up until what we’re seeing now with Katrina, that at the same time you’re doing the immediate response, for an organization like CARE, which is also focused on long-term development, we made it clear right from the beginning with our fundraising messaging that this is going to be a long-term problem … which helps us as we transition back into our ongoing fundraising program.”
- “Even in the aftermath of Katrina, it’s important for nonprofits to stay focused on their fundraising plans. If the nonprofit is doing relief work related to the hurricane, it’s especially important not to cancel the event, because this is a perfect time to explain to donors what the organization is doing. For other nonprofits, it’s important to acknowledge the disaster and, when possible, naturally link their mission to it in some way.”
- “Key to the success of the campaign was appealing to the cultural pride that is evident in San Diego’s large Greek community, rather than simply approaching them with the idea that it was good for the school.”
- “Stop trying to prove your mission with facts. That gets to the wrong side of your donor’s brain, if at all. Get into your donor’s psyche with a story, because right next to the donor’s story lobe is the check-writing lobe — and they are closely connected.”
From Tom Hurley, president of the not-for-profit division of DMW Worldwide (In the Trenches, “9 Habits of Successful Direct-Response Fundraisers”):
- “Direct-response fundraising can be an awesomely complex medium. Stay focused on a strategy that will get you to a successful future. Trust your support team. And don’t sweat the small stuff.”
- Here are Tom’s nine habits:
- Have an annual plan.
- Give clear instructions.
- Don’t be swayed by “the next big thing.”
- Keep to deadlines.
- Pay your bills on time.
- Always send clean data.
- Never make changes at the proof stage.
- Return calls promptly.
- Don’t sweat the small stuff.