Category: Donor relations

When Can We Ask Monthly Donors for Special One-Time Gifts (and to Upgrade)?

Our organization has been having discussions about whether and how we can approach monthly donors, particularly those who are already giving $100+ per month, to discuss an extra single gift or an increased monthly gift. We are looking to develop a protocol about this so our development team has some guidance. Do you have any advice?

Major Donor Surveys: A Three Year Case Study

In the sequel to his January-February 2016 article, “Surveys and Segments: Building Your Major Donor Strategy,” Jack Hui Litster shares lessons learned in the three years since Inter Pares first launched their major donor survey.

Whoops! None of Our Year-end Donors Were Thanked

Dear Kim,

I am the chair of the board of an organization with a big problem. We had a great year-end appeal and a lot of people gave money. As we are getting ready to put together our spring appeal, I have learned that none of them were thanked.

Deductions: Volunteer Time, Honorariums & Gala Tickets

Dear Kim, Our tiny nonprofit has an accountant who has been doing our bookkeeping for free. I told her she should deduct the value of her time from her taxes and, to my great surprise, she told me that is not legal. Why would that be? She could have made money during that time from […]

Data, Donor Retention, and the Secret to Fundraising Success

Heather Yandow surveyed 119 small nonprofits with revenues under $2 million to identify our fundraising strengths and challenges. Here’s what she found.

The Pros and Cons of Engaging Volunteers in Fundraising

Dear Kim, For years I have been told that board members and volunteers need to be trained and enlisted in reaching out, meeting with donors, thanking them and asking for support. I work somewhere that has prioritized that. But all of that comes with the cost of a lot of staff time. Some volunteers aren’t […]

Key to Successful Fundraising: Appreciating Our Donors

Dear Kim, I am new to development and I have heard several contradictory things about the kinds of acknowledgements I should be sending to donors. Someone said we are required by law to send a thank you for every gift and someone else said you have to subtract the value of anything you send to […]

Appreciating Gifts of All Sizes

Dear Kim, We are a direct service agency and have an excellent social media presence, particularly on Facebook. We post stories, pictures and sometimes short videos. And, I should emphasize our organization does great work! So at this time of year we are getting dozens of $5-15 gifts from new donors, most of whom will […]

Collecting Donor Social Security Numbers

Dear Kim,

I have heard that the IRS is going to encourage nonprofits to ask for the social security number of their $250+ donors. Is this true? Why would they do that?

A Kind & Common Sense Approach to Donor Relations

Dear Kim, I solicited many of my personal contacts for my organization a couple of years ago. About ten of them gave, and of those ten, two or three have continued to give in response to appeals from my organization without any follow up from me. This year I signed up to follow up with […]