7 Strategies to Reach Today's Finicky Donors
September 1, 2013

In a really smart move, organizers of the 2013 Bridge to Integrated Marketing and Fundraising Conference, which took place in National Harbor, Md., in July, set up chairs and monitors outside some of the more heavily attended sessions so participants who spilled out into the hallways could be comfortable and actually hear the speakers. I…

Messages From P, Q, R, S and T
February 28, 2013

As we continue our journey through the alphabet, you'll find more ideas to help recharge your fundraising, using P, Q, R, S and T as my "copy triggers." (Just like writing a good fundraising appeal, right?!)

What Can K, L, M, N and O Teach Us?
February 21, 2013

Special thanks to Sue Pargman, senior copywriter at Masterworks! She took on my challenge last week and provided suggestions for all five letters. So, welcome Sue, my co-author for this article. I’ll be sharing some of her thoughts along with mine. So with that, let’s look at K, L, M, N and O.

A Brand That Wears Boots
February 4, 2010

I almost walked out. My first impression was, “This is the worst general session at any DMA conference I’ve ever attended.” And I’ve attended a few.

The guy seemed nice enough, but he was talking about dead cowboys buried on a hill in rural Texas. Guys who shot each other for no good reason. Texas terrain with the longest bluff in the nation and someone I never heard of by the name of Cal Farley. He played football but finally excelled at wrestling.

I was dumbfounded. Where was all this going? And did I possibly care?

And the Winners Are...
September 1, 2007

Wow! Who ever thought the Gold Awards could be so exciting? The sun was setting on judgement day, and we had a tie for Package of the Year. A first! So, I polled our four judges — Steve Froehlich, director of development analytics at the ASPCA; Tim O’Leary, vice president of McPherson Associates; Paul Bobnak, director of North American Publishing Co.’s Who’s Mailing What! Archive; and FS Senior Editor Abny Santicola. After some soul searching and spirited debate, they weighed in: two for one package and the other two for the other package.

The Pursuit of Brand Happiness
May 1, 2007

Not long ago, a few companies realized something profound about the human spirit in its pursuit of meaning and purpose. Then they quietly began to reinvent their reason for being in order to bring “meaning” to the lives of the people who buy their products.

What’s Your Point?
February 1, 2007

Many nonprofit organizations define online success by its effectiveness in augmenting their offline fundraising. Certainly a level of praise is justified for such efforts, but to truly realize the full potential of the Internet we must go beyond mere integration of marketing.

A new perspective is needed … we must move the Internet from after- to forethought in our minds. Imagine if the Internet was your only way to communicate with donors. Suddenly, you would need to transform financial transactions into altruistic experiences.

Fundraiser Confidential
August 1, 2006

In every successful nonprofit organization, there is a small percentage of donors that will support it no matter what. Usually, these donors (who are called many things, but mostly “major”) can account for approximately 75 percent to 85 percent of the charity’s total revenue.

Rent Smarter, Not Harder
October 18, 2005

Rent Smarter, Not Harder Oct. 18, 2005 By Abny Santicola, associate editor, FundRaising Success The first thing nonprofit organizations should do when it comes to renting lists is understand their market definition. So says Todd Baker, vice president of marketing and brand development for Paulsbo, Wash.-based full-service direct-marketing agency Masterworks. Ask yourself: Are you an organization that's involved in health and human services, the arts, or relief and development? After you have a clear picture of your market definition you can begin by looking at the lists that similar organizations in your category rent. If you're just embarking on list rental, Baker advises taking