Tips From the Tops on Keeping Fundraising Fresh
Nonprofit fundraising often might feel like a never-ending task. Just when you seem able to juggle all the balls you’ve been handed, new ones in the form of different channels or higher goals are thrown into the mix. Maintaining tried-and-true fundraising techniques that have and still do shoulder the fundraising burden for your nonprofit while also keeping up with and on the cutting edge of new technologies and breaking ground into those new frontiers is no easy task.
Ever wonder how your peers keep a fresh perspective on it all? Here, some of the winners of FundRaising Success’ 2007 Fundraising Professionals of the Year Awards share their tips:
* Marc Sirkin, chief marketing officer, International Rescue Committee, and one of our Top Men in Fundraising: There are so many great new ideas out there — pick a few, modify them and see if they work. It’s not hard, it just takes time and a willingness to experiment.
* Jo Sullivan, senior vice president of development and communications, ASPCA, and our Fundraising Professional of the Year (Organization): By adding and experimenting with new channels — be it text messaging or FSI (free standing insert) or more integrated media campaigns. Just looking for the next big (or small) thing which will open your program in multiple channels to multiple groups of potential donors.
* Chuck Longfield, chief executive officer, Target Analysis Group, and winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award (Agency): In some ways, my chosen profession forces me to stay fresh. Marketing techniques, as well as technology, are both continually changing. There is no end to great ideas for raising more money, yet most of these ideas require support from technology to successfully implement. Before you deliver the last software feature, the fundraiser is already drafting plans for the next feature. When you answer the last request for information, there is another to be answered. I truly believe that we are on the verge of real breakthroughs in the role that information technology can play in improving fundraising practices. I’m more jazzed up than I’ve ever been.
* Dixie Ost, director of direct marketing, Heifer International, and one of our Top Women in Fundraising: By utilizing our DM appeals to keep donors connected to Heifer’s work via fresh information from the field about the people we are helping — whether they donate or not.
* Kurt Aschermann, president/COO, Charity Partners, and one of our Top Men in Fundraising: The people in our industry do that [for me].