Posted , by Abby Weber, Client Manager. Topic: Donors, Funds and Funders.

Foundations and corporations are the same as other major donors—except when they aren’t. All should be cultivated and stewarded in similar ways, with consistent work to build a relationship. But while you communicate directly with major donors, you must go through representatives when dealing with a grant funder. What can you do to ensure your request… Read more »

Posted , by Melissa James, Marketing Director. Topic: Donor Communication, Donors.

We all know good writing is critical in fundraising, but even a well-written appeal might leave money on the table if a more strategic word or phrase could have been substituted. So how can your organization ensure you are packaging your message in the most strategic way? Luckily, a variety of studies have been done to determine which… Read more »

Posted , by Wendy McGrady, Executive Vice President. Topic: Board Development, Boards of Directors.

In my previous article “Five Steps to a Creating a High-Performing Board,” I offered this road map to ensuring your board knew what was expected of them and coaching them toward greater effectiveness: ?1. Ensure the nominating committee is considering your nonprofit’s unique needs at this point in its organizational development 2. Talk through responsibilities—including… Read more »

Posted , by Wendy McGrady, Executive Vice President. Topic: Capital Campaigns, Higher Education.

While mistakes can be valuable learning opportunities, this is a case where the client did everything right. Blue Ridge Community College followed our advice to the letter—and the results speak for themselves. Founded in 1967, Blue Ridge Community College offers comprehensive programs of instruction including associate degrees, diplomas and certificates in occupational/technical and college/university transfer… Read more »

Posted , by Melissa James, Marketing Director. Topic: Donor Communication.

While we hate to disillusion anyone right after the holidays, I need to set the record straight about a certain mythical figure. You might have been sending letters to it for years. But unfortunately, there’s no such thing as… the General Public. All too often, nonprofit communications are written for this “audience,” and the message… Read more »

Posted , by Abby Weber, Client Manager. Topic: High-Net-Worth Individuals, Philanthropy Research & Events.

A closer look at this population’s motivations, expectations and behaviors, according to the recent U.S. Trust study   How engaged are the wealthy in philanthropy? What drives their giving? How much are they giving? What would inspire them to give even more? These questions are thoroughly addressed in the 2016 U.S. Trust Study of High Net… Read more »

Posted , by Wendy McGrady, Executive Vice President. Topic: Nonprofit Management, Preparing for a Campaign.

To Virginia’s secluded Eastern Shore community, the Barrier Islands Center is more than a museum, education center and tourist attraction—it’s a cherished gathering place. Founded in 1996, the Barrier Islands Center introduces visitors to the history of the islands and surrounds them in the rich history of the Eastern Shore. In 2009, the Barrier Islands Center… Read more »

Posted , by Victoria Dietz, Vice President. Topic: Year-End Giving.

It’s fall, so if you haven’t started planning your year-end appeals, you’re late—but not too late! Over 40% of giving occurs in last four months of year. But Google has found that donors begin their research in August, and that online donation-related searches increase 30% from August to September. Of course, December is still king for when… Read more »

Posted , by Wendy McGrady, Executive Vice President. Topic: Board Development.

Is your nonprofit’s board of directors living up to expectations? Do they even know what is expected of them? In our work with nonprofits, we’ve sometimes found that when staff and board leadership are disappointed in their board’s performance, it’s often because they have not made their expectations clear—particularly in fundraising. Therefore, to build a successful… Read more »

Posted , by Ryan Woroniecki, Guest Writer | DonorSearch Vice President of Strategic Partnerships.. Topic: Donor Prospects.

When trying to implement prospect research at your nonprofit, you first must get a handle on the benefits, targets and methods of prospect research. 1. What types of donors can prospect research identify? The top donors for targeting your prospect research are: Major gift donors By ranking prospects according to their ability and affinity to… Read more »