Can We Talk About What 'Not Interested' Means?
A great comment I heard around this topic is, "Fear suppresses new ideas." So the next time you say, "I'm not interested" — make sure it is not a fear-based issue.
2. Constant change is hard to manage
Yes, change is not as easy as "no change." But a clear testing strategy that includes ongoing challenges of control strategies is critical. I have often described the nonprofit industry as being similar to pack animals. We often move as a group. When something new comes around, we all watch it, then we typically report on it at a conference, and then it gains traction and everyone then starts to do the same thing.
OK, that's a slight oversimplification, but you know what I'm trying to say.
There's a lot of history in our programs and strategies, and the success has not been achieved through lots of high-risk approaches. However, when times are good we can easily rest on our control strategies and just watch the bank statements. But when times are good, it is the best time to push on new ideas, new insight, new tests, new marketing formats, new campaigns, etc.
It is very hard to do this when times are tough. So make sure when times are good you are using that as an opportunity to better your best. The next time you're tempted to say, "We aren't interested," ask yourself if things are going well and if you perhaps should be looking at new ideas.
Just remember, results are like roller coasters — sometimes you are up, and sometimes you are down. If you're down, don't get caught in the trap of your executives asking what you've tried recently to make improvements in the program and you don't have an answer. An ongoing improvement strategy or approach within your fundraising team is critical to both short-term and long-term success.
Vice President, Strategy & Development
Eleventy Marketing Group
Angie is ridiculously passionate about EVERYTHING she’s involved in — including the future and success of our nonprofit industry.
Angie is a senior exec with 25 years of experience in direct and relationship marketing. She is a C-suite consultant with experience over the years at both nonprofits and agencies. She currently leads strategy and development for marketing intelligence agency Eleventy Marketing Group. Previously she has worked at the innovative startup DonorVoice and as general manager of Merkle’s Nonprofit Group, as well as serving as that firm’s CRM officer charged with driving change within the industry. She also spent more 14 years leading the marketing, fundraising and CRM areas for two nationwide charities, The Arthritis Foundation and the American Cancer Society. Angie is a thought leader in the industry and is frequent speaker at events, and author of articles and whitepapers on the nonprofit industry. She also has received recognition for innovation and influence over the years.