3 PROVOCATIVE QUESTIONS TO ASK ABOUT YOUR NON-PROFIT'S FUNDRAISING

We ran across this interesting article the other day about fundraising for organizations.  Whether you agree or not, we think it's worth a read!  - FundSpot

by Joe Garecht @ The Fundraising Authority

Today, I want to stir the pot a little bit. In this post, I want to ask 3 questions about your organization’s fundraising… 3 questions that need to be asked at every non-profit, in order to make sure they are on the right path to development success.

Why do I call these questions provocative? Because chances are, some people at your organization aren’t going to like the fact that they are being asked. And others will think the answers I suggest are flat out wrong.

That’s ok – I’m basing these questions (and analysis) on 15 years of fundraising experience, coupled with tons of research into best practices. Ready?

Question #1: How Much Does Your Development Director Make?

While most people at your organization are not (and should not) be privy to your staff members’ salaries, one key question that needs to be asked is how much your non-profit’s Development Director (or Chief Development Officer, or Vice President of Development… whoever is in charge of the development operation) makes… especially in regards to the salaries of other executives at your organization.

With three narrow exceptions*, your top fundraiser should be the second-highest paid person on your staff, after the Executive Director / CEO.

Think about it – could your non-profit operate without fundraising? Probably not. Chances are that 100% of your staff rely on fundraising revenues to pay their salaries. Likewise, most of your programs rely in whole or in part on fundraising. So… nothing your organization does is more important than development.

At small and mid-sized companies (and many large ones) the top sales executive is the second-highest paid professional on staff. The same should go for non-profits… and at many smart organizations it already does. Where does your Development Director fall on the pay scale? If your top fundraiser is underpaid, it probably means the rest of the fundraising staff is as well… and that development isn’t the priority it should be at your organization.

*The three exceptions I mentioned are extremely large and complicated organizations, where the Chief Operations Officer is responsible for hundreds of locations, or thousands of staff members; major hospitals, where there are numerous specialized medical experts on staff; and large universities. In all three cases, however, the top fundraising professional should still be among the top 5 or 6 paid staff members.

Question #2: How Updated is Your Fundraising Technology?

Look around your non-profit. What type of donor database do you have? What kind of online tools does your fundraising team have at its disposal? Do your fundraisers (or fundraiser… if there’s only one of your) have cell phones and laptops provided by the organization so that they can get out of the office and do donor meetings and have meals with prospects?

Of course, not every non-profit needs the full-tech treatment. If your organization just got started a year or two ago, maybe you don’t need (or can’t afford) laptops and cell phones and a glitzy new online donation page. That’s fine…

But, if your organization is constantly updating technology on the program side, but nickels and dimes the fundraising team on every item, then it’s highly likely your non-profit has a serious culture issue that will negatively impact fundraising in the near future.

Question #3: What’s Your Budget for Fundraising Training and Innovation?

Lots of non-profits try to operate their fundraising on a shoestring budget. Even for those that are willing to invest in development, far too many skimp on training and innovation. Both areas are easy to sweep under the rug, since neither directly impact immediate fundraising goals.

But… both training and innovation are integral to the long term success of your fundraising efforts.

Does your non-profit pay for the fundraising team to take online classes and webinars, buy books, and go to conferences and seminars? Are you encouraged to take a couple of days per year just to brush up on your skills and learn new fundraising techniques? If not, you should be.

Similarly, does your organization have a budget for trying new fundraising tactics each year? For example, if your non-profit has traditionally relied on events and individual fundraising to raise money, would you be able to spend $500 to launch and market a crowdfunding campaign, or $1,000 to try a new participatory event? Innovation is essential to reaching your long term fundraising goals.

Go get some answers to these important questions – at many non-profits, simply asking these questions may be enough to start improving your fundraising culture.

Monthly Giving: Bigger, Better and More Loyal Donors

Did you know that monthly givers (donors who sign-up for recurring monthly giving) give bigger gifts to your organization and do so more oftenthan any other type of donor?

If you’d like to learn how to launch and market a successful monthly giving program at your organization, then join us for our newest class: How to Build a Monthly Giving Program at Your Non-Profit.

During this 4 week multimedia class, you’ll learn everything you need to know, including:

  • How to build a monthly giving program that really works
  • 7 ways to brand and market your monthly giving option
  • How to write amazing direct mail and e-mail monthly giving appeals
  • And much, much moreClick here for a complete class syllabus

Photo Credits:  Tiffany Terry

Written by Joe Garecht & The Fund Raising Authority - Additional Comments by Eric Payne @ FundSpot

FUNDSPOT.COM IS THE FUNSPOT FOR FUNDRAISING

YES IT’S AN INTENTIONAL PLAY ON WORDS, BUT IT’S TRUE,FUNDRAISING IS NOW FUN AGAIN!

Fundspot is the Fun Spot for Fundraising.  (We’d have owned FunSpot.com as well if it weren’t for a trampoline retailer taking our idea. Dang it!)


So, we probably have more kids per household on our street that anywhere else in town.  It’s then no surprise that we have eaten more than our share of cookies and ordered more magazines than we will ever read.  I even heard a story of kids selling mattresses as a fundraiser.  Truthfully, that just sounds really stressful and hard. 
 
FundSpot has created a perfect way to get donors excited about supporting campaigns.  Ready for it?....... Make your fundraiser campaigns mutually interactive and super fun!!  See how easy that was?  When creating a fundraising campaign (or even after posting a campaign), the creator and members of the campaign can think up Challenges and Milestones to do when certain benchmarks have been met.  As example, a soccer team will commit to shaving their coach’s head and posting the video if they raise $3000 for their travel expenses to go to regionals.  Or a politician will agree to run a marathon if donations to his campaign exceed $20,000.  Imagine how cool it would be if the church youth group agreed to paint a widow’s house if they raised $10,000 for summer camp?
 
The crazy (or not so crazy) ideas for challenges are limitless.  Get creative and post multiple types of challenges.  Some donors will get excited about one milestone while other donors would rather donate to something entirely different. 
 
Start a fun fundraiser today.  We’re excited to see what types of fundraising challenges you come up with!

Turn learn more or get started click the button below



FUNDSPOT FUNDRAISING IDEAS FOR EDUCATION, LARGE EVENTS, NON-PROFITS

WHAT IF: 

  • Donations to fundraisers could be sustainable and reproducible?
  • Organizations could set up an online account that is optimized to run multiple simultaneous fundraising campaigns? 
  • You could have members (friends/family/donors/team)in each campaigns that post fun "team challenges" to social media

 THE FUNDSPOT STORY

I would call myself both a social entrepreneur and a happy giver.  My wife and I give to our local church.  We sponsor two children in South America.  We’ve been monthly supporters for missionaries in Ecuador and Africa.  I’m chairman of the board of a non-profit organization that goes to the ends of the earth to highlighted incredible people and great organizations that are making a huge impact.  We go to YoungLife Banquets, and we buy goodies and kitchen gadgets from the neighborhood kids who are fundraising for their schools.  

And I bet that because you’re still reading this, you share my passion for making a difference.  You see that fundraising is a necessary tool to support those people and organizations that need it most.  But you want to maximize your limited resources in a way that provides the most awareness and direct impact to the cause.  We’ll me too, which is exactly why FundSpot.com was started.  
 
While researching about crowdfunding, I noticed a big divide in the ever-growing world of online fundraising.  To one side there are fundraising platforms that are positioned well to fundraise for indie start-ups and niche products.  On the other side there are websites that do a great job focusing on fundraising for individual causes.  These causes are usually one-time events where someone would have a need, they would post their cause, raise their money, and the immediacy of their need would be resolved.
 
But what about the regional youth soccer club with 150 teams, where each team needs to raise money for dues, uniforms, gear, and travel expenses.  What about the church down the road that needs to run simultaneous fundraising campaigns for their summer youth camp, their short term missions teams, their food bank outreach, their medical clinic, and their capital campaign for a new sanctuary?   What about the city’s desperate need for a museum and a rec center?  
 
It was for these needs and countless more that FundSpot was born.  FundSpot.com can certainly help individuals as well as groups learn how to fundraise better.  FundSpot was strategically optimized to meet the immediate and ongoing fundraising needs of teams, groups, organizations, and YOU.

 

WHAT IS FUNDSPOT

Our goal is to maximize your fundraising efforts utilizing the FundSpot platform.  FundSpot has been uniquely crafted and optimized from the ground up to help you get funded quickly and easily from leveraging social media and social sharing. 

FundSpot is the best fundraising system strategically optimized for large events, teams, groups, individuals and organizations such as Universities, Museums and Zoo's. The ability to set-up and manage multiple simultaneous fundraising campaigns with team members for each campaign under one "umbrella" is at the core of Fundspot. 

An example of this is a Museum fundraising for a large capital campaign of the course of three years.  Over the three years there will be many different fundraising events and that can all be managed by teams members utilizing the FundSpot platform. 
 

Turn learn more or get started click the button below