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It's That Time of Year...

It’s March in the annual fund. If you’re on a calendar fiscal year, you’re starting to get those first results in and get a feel for how people are responding in 2014. If you’re on an academic fiscal year, you’re seeing fourth quarter looming on the horizon and planning those final appeals. If you’re on a...

Well, it’s always “That Time Of Year” in the annual fund, isn’t it? And the goal remains the same – more people giving more dollars...

The Data Privacy Controversy

Data is being created at an alarming pace, as information is collected from a growing range of sources such as social media, smart phones, tablets, cameras, satellites, remote sensors and other emerging technologies.  In fact, IBM estimates that as of 2012 an additional 2.5 exabytes of data is created every day – the equivalent of all words ever spoken by every single human being in history. 

Data is neither intrinsically good nor bad – it simply is; it exists.  It is what we use data for that causes controversy.  It’s hard to be for or against data, but the use of data by government and businesses to determine buying behavior, track calling patterns or display advertising as we surf the web – are popular topics in today’s digital world...

The Rich & Single: America’s Wealthiest Bachelors & Bachelorettes

WealthEngine Valentine

In honor of Valentine’s Day, we thought it would be fun to look at America’s richest singles.  Did you know that majority of these bachelor and bachelorettes live in New York, California and Texas?  Or that the most charitable of these singles live in Florida, Connecticut and California?  View our infographic to learn more about the wealthiest single men and women...

Boomers and Millennials Represent Future Fundraising Opportunities that Must be Cultivated Now

Five Trends for Nonprofits to Watch in 2014 and Beyond - Trend Two2014 will see a shift in focus for nonprofits as they respond to changing demographics in the giving population. Two trends will dominate: first, Boomers are retiring, and as they do so, planned giving opportunities will become much more prevalent. Boomers will also be more involved than ever in causes about which they are passionate, translating into increased volunteering. Nonprofits should be ready with meaningful opportunities that allow their Boomer supporters to apply their business skills and work experience. Secondly, Millennials are developing their unique profile as donors, and indications are strong that they will be civic-minded, creative, and very active in determining how their contributions are used. Nonprofits who want to engage Millennials will need to speak to them on many channels, including mobile, be willing to listen and respond to their ideas and feedback, and involve them as partners and insiders in finding solutions for social problems...

Five Steps to Create Donor Personas

Create unique personas to help segment your constituents to send personalized, meaningful messages that will stand out from the crowd.

Many nonprofits have a one size fits all approach to fundraising appeals.  Or, if they segment their appeals, they base it on age, or giving history, or if they are very sophisticated, both.  I’m not saying that age and giving history aren’t important, of course they are.  But do all Millennials think alike?  Do all lapsed donors respond to the same appeal to “come back?”  Are all Boomers capable of giving multi-million dollar gifts?  No.  Donors and prospects are as individual as we are, and if you are going to be successful marketing your nonprofit mission to them, and help your nonprofit stand out from the crowd, you need to get creative.  The following steps will help you create personas that you can use in your donor and prospect marketing and solicitation segmentations. 

With the Continued Growth of the Nonprofit Sector, Individual Donors Will Become More Important

Five Trends for Nonprofits to Watch in 2014 and Beyond - Trend OneThe nonprofit sector continues to grow, despite the economic downturn and sluggish recovery.  The Urban Institute’s The Nonprofit Almanac 2012 by Katie L. Roeger, Amy S. Blackwood, and Sarah L. Pettijohn indicates that the number of nonprofits grew by 24% from 2000 to 2010, and their growth in revenue was even more striking at 41%.  Nonprofits contributed $804.8B to the U.S. economy in 2010, representing 5.5% of GDP.  Perhaps more important, nonprofits now employ 10% of the U.S. workforce, meaning one in every 10 working adults now finds meaningful employment at nonprofit organizations.  This growth in nonprofit influence is fueled in part by a rising demand for services as the recession fueled drop in wages and employment for Middle America feeds the ever-growing income disparity gap between the rich and the rest.

Join the First Ever Impact Call: Expanding the Definition of Transparency

Join the First Ever Guidestar Impact Call: Expanding the Definition of TransparencyThe following is a guest post from James Lum, GuideStar’s CFO.


GuideStar led the first revolution in nonprofit transparency by posting IRS Forms 990 online nearly two decades ago. That resulted in greater accountability in nonprofit practice and greater transparency in compensation, program effectiveness, and giving across the sector. 

Now we’re helping to lead a second revolution. We want to expand the definition of transparency to be more timely, interactive, inclusive, and comprehensive.

On Monday, February 24, at 2 pm ET, we are holding the first ever Impact Call, and we invite you to join us. Loosely based on the quarterly earnings calls held by publicly-owned companies, the Impact Call is open to everyone and will be the first step in addressing these new transparency definitions...

Five Trends for Nonprofits to Watch in 2014 and Beyond

Five Trends for Nonprofits to Watch in 2014 and BeyondAs 2014 gets underway, predictions abound.  With full knowledge that “the best way to predict the future is to create it,” we offer the following ideas for nonprofits to ponder this year and beyond.

Trend One: With the Continued Growth of the Nonprofit Sector, Individual Donors Will Become More Important

The nonprofit sector is growing in both size and influence, government cutbacks are negatively impacting nonprofit funding and corporate funding, while growing, is a mere 6% of total contributions...

The Power of Mobile Giving

Mobile Giving Myths and Best PracticesThere’s much talk about having an integrated marketing campaign to engage your donors. But what about a mobile campaign? Angela Whaley, Client Experience Director at mGive and Claudia Perrone, Marketing Specialist at No-Kill LA shared how they did just during WealthEngine’s webinar Puppies, Kitties and Mobile: Donor Engagement with mGive & Best Friends Animal Society.

Myths about Mobile
First, they addressed some common mobile myths which have discouraged many from going forward with a mobile campaign...

Roto-Rooters and Middle Donors

The Annual Fund and Shrinking Middle DonorI’ve long been a big fan of the wit and wisdom of Jeff Schreifels and Richard Perry of the Veritus Group.  Recently, in their Passionate Giving blog they exhorted major gift officers to clean out their clogged middle donor pipelines.

Say Jeff and Richard, “So in 2014, if you want to maintain a healthy major gift program, you’re going to need to invest in some good donor plumbing… to get your mid-level donor program flowing freely.”

Truer words were never spoken.  But these two worthy fundraising gurus actually glossed over one of the most important tools (other than a Roto-Rooter) to clean out said pipeline: regular data screening of your donors.  They give a nod to it by suggesting you “…conduct a wealth overlay on all your midlevel and major donors to get a better understanding of capacity.”

But what to do with those results is where the real “Roto-Rooting” begins...

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