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Top Things to Consider Before Converting Your Nonprofit’s Data into a New System

This is a guest post from Monika McMahon, Community Manager at Heller Consulting.

Monika McMahon - Heller ConsultingSo, your organization has finally decided to move to a new database. This is great news! You’re ready to have a fresh start with new software. Before you can start using this updated software, you have to import, or map, your data into the new system, which can be a big task. Here are some tips on data conversion that Heller Consulting’s Susie Saxten has learned over her years of consulting that your organization should consider before you move any data into a new system. These tips will help you get the conversion process started off right...

Best of 2013: Top 10 Articles That Matter Most to Marketers & Fundraisers

As the year comes to a close, we wanted to share some of our favorite resources for marketers and fundraisers:

  1. Fundraising Effectiveness 
    AFP and The Urban Institute published the results of the annual Fundraising Effectiveness Survey, covering year over year fundraising results for 2011 and 2012.  For the first time in five years, charity respondents to the annual Fundraising Effectiveness Project survey saw positive gains in giving, but still continued to lose donors faster than they gained them. The survey shows that for every $100 a charity gained in 2012 from new donors, the return of previous donors and increased giving from current donors, it lost $96 from lapsed donors and smaller gifts from current donors-for a positive gain of $4. It also shows 105 donors lost for every 100 gained....

Predicting Weather Is Not Like Predicting Donations

Angie Moore - Fundraising Success

“This is a guest post from our friend Angie Moore at Fundraising Success.  She captured the value of predictive modeling so well, we couldn’t have said it better.” 

I understand — "predictions" just feel uncomfortable for many people. While not meaning to take on the weather experts, I just wonder if the reason I don't trust weather predictions is that I don't understand how to predict weather. Therefore, is it really that not understanding something makes us uncomfortable, which, in turn, makes us not believe? I get it. But it just doesn't make any sense.

I spoke with folks from a nonprofit the other day who absolutely were not interested in trying modeling. When I asked why, they said they were pleased with their current segmentation. I'll go on record saying that modeling has a place in every fundraising program, and if you don't believe it, perhaps you just don't understand it.

Now, for anyone out there admitting, "I don't understand how modeling will improve my program," please know that you don't need to understand all the details to benefit from the use. And there is tremendous benefit from predictive modeling...

Institute of Fundraising - Partners in Fundraising Awards

Institute of Fundraising - Partners in Fundraising AwardsFor the second year in a row, WealthEngine is pleased to have been short-listed for two Partners in Fundraising Awards, Best Database Supplier and Best Digital/Technology Partner (Charity Facing), but we need your vote to get into the winner’s circle!

If you are an Institute of Fundraising member, please vote for WealthEngine by visiting the IoF Partners in Fundraising Awards website and clicking “Vote Now” by December 31st.  While only members are eligible to vote, you can also tweet your support using hashtag #PiFAS14, and @ioftweets and @WealthEngine.

Thank you in advance for your continued support of WealthEngine!

Why Do Donors Give? Eight Ways to Communicate the Right Messages to Your Donors

While the end of the calendar year quickly approaches, it’s still not too late to make your charitable giving plans.  The Wall Street Journal offers some timely advice in their article “Giving and Getting: Tax-Savvy Ways to Be Charitable Now.”

According to the article, charitable giving is on the rise for several reasons:

  • The stock market is booming meaning many individuals have more taxable income this year
  • Taxes are on the rise which means individuals have more incentive to donate to receive a charitable deduction

The combination of these two factors makes for a great opportunity for donors to support charities of their choice and for charities to promote giving.  By proactively identifying the prospects in your organization’s constituent file who are likely to have stock market holdings that have increased in value, you can target the right message to the right prospect.  Look for those who have given gifts of appreciated stock in the past, have made large gifts, those with higher salaries, and high net worth.  If you need don’t know who in your file meets these criterion, check out WealthEngine’s FindWealth8, a one-stop, proactive research tool...

Using Big Data for Marketing and Fundraising Relevance

Big Data Database

What is Big Data?

Ask 10 people, and you may get 10 different answers.  To me, Big Data is data from multiple sources that needs to be combined in ways to make it informative and actionable. By combining data from disparate sets, patterns and insights emerge, and this actually creates more data!  As patterns and trends are recognized in the data, these relationships, not previously a part of the data set, become new bits of data ripe for mining and analysis.

More and bigger data sets are also being generated because information is being collected from social media, smart phones and other mobile devices, cameras, satellites, remote sensors and other newly emerging technologies.  IBM estimates that as of 2012, an additional 2.5 exabytes (2.5 x 1018) of data is created every day. To understand how much data that is, check out James S. Huggins’ The Refrigerator Door...

What do you give for? Join the #IGive4 Campaign

iGive4 - Giving Tuesday

At WealthEngine, we’re proud of our clients and the work they do in the world. 

In this season of giving, we want to show you that we care.  GuideStar’s #IGive4 campaign is the perfect opportunity to do this.  Meet some of our staff who, like you, want to make our world a better place. 

Please join in celebrating giving during this season of giving.  It’s simple...

Eleven Ways to Get Involved With #GivingTuesday

Giving TuesdayGiving Tuesday is right around the corner!  If you are still not sure what #GivingTuesday is, and how to get involved, read on.

Giving Tuesday is a movement begun two years ago to remind people of the importance of giving back.  Held on the first Tuesday following Thanksgiving (as well as Black Friday and Cyber Monday), Giving Tuesday is about compassion, volunteering, donating, and being generous in our communities. 

If your organization is looking for ways to get involved with #GivingTuesday, by spreading the word of the movement among your constituents or by developing a campaign and/or event around the day, these tips will help you get started...

Ignite Your Passions on #GivingTuesday

Giving TuesdayDecember 3rd is #GivingTuesday, a movement begun two years ago to remind people of the importance of giving back.  Held on the first Tuesday following Thanksgiving, #GivingTuesday is about compassion, volunteering, donating, and being generous in our communities. 

This week, in my community, a beloved and selfless public servant suffered a tragic family loss due to the lack of availability of mental health facilities and services.  I’m passionate about changing our culture’s archaic attitudes around mental health and substance abuse issues, expanding the coverage and availability of evidence-based treatments, and hope to make a difference for those who suffer (and their families) by adding my voice to the thousands who are demanding that laws requiring insurance carriers to adequately cover treatment for these conditions are enforced.  #GivingTuesday reminds me to take action on my passions, and this December 3, I will be donating my time, my voice, and my dollars to the organizations, both national and local, that align with my social goals...

Five Ways to Use Data and Analytics to Increase Your Relevancy and Add Value to Your Fundraising

Five Ways to Use Data and Analytics to Increase Your Relevancy and Add Value to Your FundraisingWith the explosion of data and analytics in use in nonprofit environments, it’s no surprise that more effective methods of identifying and segmenting donors and prospects are emerging.  With the use of analytics, and the appropriate sourcing of relevant and accurate data, nonprofits can know more than ever before about their donors and other constituents, and can more accurately target passionate supporters for acquisition...

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