Author Archives: kimkleinfundraises

1.6 Kim Klein’s New Year’s Resolutions for Grassroots Fundraisers

Dear Readers: Either you were all so busy with year-end donations or you took some time off during December,  (I hope a lot of both)  but I did not get any questions to answer.   So I will use this space to suggest some new year’s resolutions for those of us with fundraising responsibilities, whether staff, […]

12.3 Should We Change Things Up in Our End-of-Year Appeal?

Dear Kim: I work for a small rural medical, dental and behavioral health facility serving around 5,000 local residents and beyond. We do two mailings a year. Our best results have been when we do a fall newsletter and a winter appeal letter. We did a four color newsletter for the first time this past […]

12.3 Formal vs. Informal Salutations

Dear Kim: We have an ongoing debate about the use of formal (more traditional) vs. informal salutations. Historically, our default was formal unless we knew the individual(s). My question relates to how this is trending in the non-profit sector. For example, our ED is suggesting that our default be informal, e.g.: Tom and Susan Mitchell…Dear […]

10.14 Increase Your Return on Investment

Dear Kim: What fundraising strategy gives an organization the most ROI?*  The board is willing to raise money, but many of them are businesspeople and so they want the most efficient strategy. ~Bottom Line *Editor’s note:  ROI stands for Return on Investment. Dear Bottom: The literal answer to your question is legacy giving:  encouraging donors […]

10.14 Spice Up Your Thank You Notes

Dear Kim: You are often quoted as saying things like, “Thank before you bank,” and “The thank you note is the most important element in a donor relationship” and other pro-thank you note statements.  But how do you make a thank you note interesting?  And do donors really read them?  And what if I think […]

9.13 Dear Kim: Seeking Separation of Church and Donation

Dear Kim: The chair of our board, Susan, recently introduced me to her elderly aunt, who is interested in our organization’s work. She is a lovely person, and in our second meeting, Susan asked her if she would make a lead gift to a new program we had been discussing.  She said she would be […]

8.5 Is This the Wrong Time to Start a Nonprofit?

Dear Kim, I want to start a nonprofit that teaches young people digital arts.  I have researched and received training on how to do this, and now I’m ready to get things going.  I have board members ready to volunteer and support the vision.  There is no other organization with this focus here in our […]

8.5 When Is It Ok to Tell a Potential Donor How Much Someone Else Gave?

Dear Kim, I am concerned that the director of the organization where I work may be using questionable fundraising “tactics.” For example, he would like to meet with a potential corporate donor and say “We would like you to sponsor five children for one year. Applebee’s has sponsored five children for the year, can you?” […]

7.16 Dear Kim: What To Do When You Don’t Have Addresses…

Hi, We urgently need to put out our first fundraising letter ever but only have email addresses for people (and in some cases, phone numbers). Should we send a nice looking letter by email, then follow up by phone, or should we just call to get the snail mail address, send the letter, then call […]

7.16 Dear Kim: The Importance of Saying (and Hearing) “Thank You”

Dear Kim, I give away a fair amount of money in $100-$250 increments, and sorting through some papers, I realized that I had supported about 20 organizations.  I was personally thanked by four of them, and got a generic thank you postcard from three of them, and nothing from the rest.  A friend says I […]