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Top Ten (Week of February 25, 2015): The Magic of Human Connectors in Fundraising

Resource Center - Foundation

There’s so much information online that you’re bound to have missed some of it. Here are some of the top items, articles and ideas you need to know so you can keep up-to-date and find success!

1.  Fundraising Strategy/Approach: The Magic of Human Connectors in Fundraising (Bloomerang Blog): This article makes the case that donor acquired through human connectors (i.e., personal contact with someone highly involved in the organization) are worth extra effort. Why? Because such donors tend to generate a much larger total net contribution during their lifetime. This article tells you how to calculate a total net contribution and offers practical suggestion on how to keep such donors engaged.

2. Corporate Philanthropy: Lessons in Corporate Giving from the Maple Syrup Mafia (101 Fundraising): How can you reach young entrepreneurs — the twenty-somethings in startups that are popping up and blossoming in tech communities everywhere? This article says you have to start thinking like a Gen X or Y entrepreneur, and that means think “investment” not “donation,” and find ways to engage the culture of the entire organization.

3. Fundraising Strategy/Approach: 16 Ways to Get a Meeting With Your Major Gift Prospect (FiredUp Fundraising): So, you have a promising hot prospect for a major gift. How do you get a meeting, and what do you say first? Gail Perry tells you why an Advice Visit is a great way to start and some promising ways to start the conversation.

4. Online/Social Media: 3 Smart Strategies to Boost Your Online Fundraising (The Fundraising Authority): The founder of The Fundraising Authority says, “Developing the right strategy can help non-profits of all sizes raise more money online with less stress and hassle.” Here are things you can do to significantly boost your online fundraising starting today.

5. Jobs/Workplace: Work Smarter Not Harder: 17 Great Tips (Time): It doesn’t mater whether you’re self-employed or working for someone else, you’re still working for yourself, aren’t you? And the smarter you work, the better (and easier). Here are 17 tips from Dan Pink’s book Free Agent Nation: The Future of Working for Yourself. They will serve your peace of mind just as well in the nonprofit fundraising world as in any other field of endeavor.

6. Jobs/Workplace: Things to Know Before You Tackle Your Next (Fundraising) Writing Project (101 Fundraising): So you have a major writing assignment, and your dreading it because ideas are swimming around in your head and you have writer’s block and you hate that. Here is a way to strip the writing down to the basics to get you started, and then some practical tips to relieve your reader’s suffering. 

7.  Miscellaneous: The Holstee Manifesto: Lifecycle Video (Holstee): Need a pepper upper to get you inspiration back? Here's a little 2 ½ minute video to help get you through your Monday (or weekday) blahs.

8. Fundraising Research: The Surprising Benefits of Volunteering (Moving Worlds): “The power of volunteering has been documented for the last 2,500+ years, however a slew of recent research is shedding even more light onto the surprising benefits of volunteering.” You can use this summary of findings in discussions with potential volunteers, training your staff, and your own life.

9. Online/Social Media: Organizing Through Social Media: Mobilizing, Slacktivizing, or Fetishizing (NP Quarterly): Here is a thoughtful commentary by Rick Cohen on social organizing in the age of social media. Social media does not assure social justice; it can do just the opposite; the content is up to the sender.

10. Fundraising Technology: Trends Over Time in Virtual Volunteering (NTEN): Instead of “virtual volunteering,” I prefer to call it “online volunteering” or “e-volunteering.” Regardless, this article shows how the practice of remote volunteering via communication technology has been growing in a variety of ways over the last 35 years. From her personal experience, the author offers some practical suggestions for working with remote volunteers and argues that the elements for success have not changed: “The importance of creating volunteering tasks that have real impact, of frequent communications with volunteers, of showing volunteers what impact their contributions have had, and of showing senior management at an organization what impact virtual volunteering is having.” Good advice for any kind of volunteer program.

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