Are your board members eager to help with fundraising? If not, maybe they don’t understand that Fundraising is not just asking for money.
In this week’s video from Movie Mondays for Fundraising Professionals, Janet Boguch from Non-Profit Works shares how she’s able to get board members to be engaged and have fun in the fundraising process.
The mind-shift for boards starts with explaining that fundraising is built on a whole set of strategies and activities (listed below) that are carried out continually to bring resources to the organization. There is a lot more for board members to get involved with than just “the ask.”
The 6 Rs of Relationship Building
- Renew (or upgrade)
Find out more details about the 6 R relationship cycle in the video Getting Board Members to Have Fun with Fundraising.
A couple things in this episode of Movie Mondays for Fundraising Professionals reminded me of the great roundtable session we had back in November about donor relations:
- It starts off with an inspiring Jerry Panas quote (one of the authors that our roundtable facilitator, Jill Anderson, recommended); and
- It includes the idea of hosting a “VIP volunteer opportunity” to meaningfully connect a donor (or board member) to your mission.
Have you ever put together an event that put your donor(s) right in the midst of your organization’s mission?
An example that Jill provided was from her days at Red Cross. She invited a board member to go on-call and accompanied them to the scene of an apartment complex fire, where they assisted crew members with comforting victims and finding temporary housing.
It was a monumental moment for that board member to experience why the organization’s work is so important. It provided them with a strong emotional tie and a personal story that made asking for funding easy.
If you haven’t yet, give this idea a try!
A two-part series on Kivi’s Nonprofit Communications Blog provide five questions to get you started on creating a donor cultivation event and some additional examples of meaningful ways to connect donors to your mission.
Big Duck offers this guidance on making your thank you’s stand out:
- Be sincere
- Share the big picture
- Be creative AND relevant
- Don’t treat this as JUST an excuse to ask for more
- Showcase the ones you serve
How do your thank yous measure up?
Here are a few examples of thank you videos that may spark ideas.
Photo Credit: “thank you card” by Jon Ashcroft via Flicker cc
Final accounting is now in for this year’s Colorado Gives Day – is your nonprofit getting a cut of the more than $20 million raised through Community First Foundation’s ColoradoGives.org platform?
And how about Giving Tuesday? Did you see results like Blackbaud clients who reported receiving 90% more in donations on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving this year compared to 2012?
Whether you did or didn’t, now is the time to think a little bit about how one of these days can be worked into your 2014 fundraising campaign calendar.
Colorado Gives Day
Participating in Colorado Gives Day requires registering and setting up a profile page on ColoradoGives.org. Donations are collected through the site (with no processing fees for donations made on the Day) and the Community First Foundation distributes the funds. To register, your organization must be:
- A 501(c)3 tax-exempt nonprofit organization
- Headquartered or providing services in Colorado
- Reporting at least $50,000 in annual revenue or $25,000 in net assets
- Registered with the Secretary of State with a valid Certificate of Registration and be in good standing
(In addition, private foundations, supporting organizations, places of worship and public safety organizations are not eligible to participate.)
To participate next year, put a tickler on your calendar to visit ColoradoGives.org in March. Informational webinars and a communications tool kit are provided to help you plan and implement activities. You may also want to check out the feedback from Front Range Source with ways to improve Colorado Gives Day emails.
The Tuesday after Thanksgiving has been designated Giving Tuesday much like Black Friday and Cyber Monday for retailers. This celebration of charitable activities doesn’t require the use of a particular fundraising platform and you don’t necessarily have to register (although you can at givingtuesday.org). Even though it is a more loosely facilitated program, resources, ideas and a tool kit are offered.
It’s suggested that you start planning your 2014 activities and reaching out to partners in May. Beth Kanter offers some insight on why this movement can be a capacity builder for your organization.
Have you found other resources to make the most of these giving days? Do you have some lessons learned to share?
The way you handle acknowledgement of donations and other donor communications may be pushing people away who really care about your cause. Here are five questions posed by the article How to Turn a Donor Into a Stranger:
- Do you know their names, and is that reality reflected in your communication with them?
- Do you know what their interests and passions are?
- Do you know their communication preferences?
- Are they thanked within 24 hours of receiving their gifts?
- Are you sincerely interested in and nurturing what they want to do with their money vs. what you want to do with it?
If you answered “no,” you may be turning donors off by making them feel less a “partner in a cause” vs. a “source of cash.”
For more ideas on how to improve donor relationships, join us at the Donor Relations Roundtable on Nov. 22. You can also find some Creative and Low-Cost Ways to Thank Donors in this podcast episode of Fundraising Fundamentals.
Although the article 20 Emergency Funding Sources for Nonprofits from the consulting staff at Fieldstone Alliance is several years old, it provides some ideas that your nonprofit may be able to use during disaster recovery.
The 20 ideas fall into the following categories:
- Cash Flow Management
- Contributed Income
- Earned Income
- Debt Financing
- Existing Assets
Review the chart of ideas. Let us know if you have other ideas!
Photo Credit: “emergency” by Tax Credits via Flicker cc
During a disaster like we’ve just experienced, it is easy to see the needs of nonprofit relief agencies. And those needs are huge. However, regardless of their association to disaster relief, all of the nonprofit organizations in the Estes Valley are feeling the effects of the 2013 flood.
Many nonprofits are small businesses and have been affected just like the for-profit organizations in our town. Some had direct damage from the water and most, if not all, are seeing indirect financial implications. They have had to cancel fundraising events or prematurely end campaigns, close facilities/shops for the season earlier than normal and have experienced a loss of tourist generated revenue. Some are receiving more requests for unfunded services and others are experiencing an increase in costs due to extended travel. Boards and staff are also anxious about the future of their fundraising efforts. With more immediate disaster relief needs competing for dollars and longstanding individual and business donors dealing with their own flood recovery, it is easy to see that new and alternate funding sources will need to be found.
The Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center (EPNRC) is here to support the nonprofits in our community during this time of recovery. Research is being conducted on available resources and approaches taken in other communities that have dealt with major natural disasters. Two October programs will be dedicated to providing information on nonprofit recovery: Oct. 18 – Nonprofit Finances Roundtable and Oct. 24 – Nonprofit Recovery Resources. Information will also be available on the EPNRC website (www.epnonprofit.org) and Facebook page (www.facebook.com/epnonprofit).
Current Resources for Nonprofit Organizations:
- Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Public Assistance Grant Program – If you were unable to attend the Monday, Sept. 30, informational meeting, you are encouraged to visit www.fema.gov/public-assistance-local-state-tribal-and-non-profit or go to the Disaster Assistance Center located in the Estes Valley Library.
- Small Business Administration (SBA) – The SBA can provide private nonprofits with physical and economic injury disaster loans. The application deadline for physical disaster loans is Nov. 14, 2013 and economic injury disaster loans is June 16, 2014.
- Community Foundation of Northern Colorado – Three flood relief funds have been established to support the intermediate and long-term needs of local nonprofit agencies and governmental entities. Individual donations are currently being matched by the Bohemian Foundation. Information about applying for assistance will be shared when available.
- Volunteer Clearinghouse – Call 970-577-3975 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to request assistance. We will match volunteers to your needs.
If your nonprofit has specific needs or information to pass-on, please send an email to email@example.com. As always, we encourage you to support your favorite local nonprofits in any way you can!
Photo by Diamond Photo Gallery
Just like the businesses in our community, the nonprofits serving the Estes Valley have been adversely affected by the flood of 2013.
Some had direct damage from the water but most are seeing financial implications such as needing to cancel their annual fundraising events, receiving higher than normal requests for services and seeing longstanding donors unable to help because they are dealing with their own flood recovery.
In this 2005 article, Fundraising After Natural Disasters and Crises: Internet Strategies for Non-Relief Nonprofits, three approaches are discussed that may be worth taking a look at now:
- Continue to communicate and link the event to your mission
- Conduct a micro-campaign if involved in some aspect of supporting relief efforts
- Be an agent for relief efforts with your out-of-town supporters
In a more recent article, Communicate NOW on Govt. Shutdown Impact, similar approaches are outlined with samples from nonprofits who have leveraged the government shutdown for their fundraising.
The Estes Park Nonprofit Resource Center is collecting information to specifically support the nonprofits in our community during this time of recovery. Please let us know if you have specific needs or information to pass-on. Either leave a comment below or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are all in this together!
Photo © Diamond Photography
At this time of year, many nonprofits are looking at who they can recruit to fill the positions of board members ending their term. Will any warm body do? Not if you want to ensure your organization thrives!
Here are 10 points to remember as you recruit new board members. You may also want to consult these FAQs on Board Responsibilities and Structures from BoardSource.
One recommendation for strategically approaching board member recruitment is to prepare a board recruitment matrix. It can help organize thoughts around the skill sets that are needed on your board.
Many other board development resources are available from BoardSource, Create the Future and Cause & Effect.
Photo Credit: “chess00004” by mconnors via morgueFile license