The AFP Conference in New Orleans went by so quickly. I am now back in the office slowly sifting through the materials I picked up and information from the sessions I attended. One of the most encouraging things I heard during the week was from a consultant who is currently engaged in a few capital campaigns. While there is much apprehension about asking for gifts, the people who are asking are getting gifts.
It was inspiring to hear speakers such as Doris Kearns Goodwin and Sidney Poitier. It was also fun to visit with some of my colleagues from Florida.
A session on Capital Campaign Planning held some important reminders. When contemplating a capital campaign, it is important to ensure that your organization has a solid base. This includes: the right leadership, board, prospects, communications, case statement, goal, and organizational infrastructure. Are you ready?
Here are this week’s headlines. Happy reading!
52% of Donors Plan No Decrease in Giving in 2009 (May 13, 2009, The Chronicle of Philanthropy) Their investment portfolios may be slumping and their jobs less secure, but a majority of Americans who give to charity still plan to donate as much this year as they have in the past, according to a new survey. More than 52 percent of donors said their gifts would be on par with 2008, while just 17.5 percent planned to give less. While a recession may not seem like the ideal time to seek out new donors, many people in the survey (42.5 percent) said they would give to a charity they had not supported in the past if someone they knew was seeking the gift. Many donors (40.3 percent) said they were also willing to give for the first time if the charity was working directly to help people hurt by the recession. http://philanthropy.com/news/updates/7442/just-over-half-of-donors-plan-no-decrease-in-giving-in-2008
Succeeding In Your Fundraising (April 3, 2009 The Agitator Blog Posting) Here are four bedrock suggestions for succeeding in your marketing (i.e., fundraising) in the coming year. Writing in eMarketing & Commerce, Lisa Wehr of Oneupweb, a digital marketing agency, offered these recommendations in a commercial marketing context. This posting reproduces the essence of her recommendations, followed by my fundraising "spin" on each. 1. Plan early and follow through. 2. Compel your customers to buy now. 3. Get connected and stay connected. 4. Integrate, integrate, integrate. http://www.theagitator.net/branding/succeeding-in-your-fundraising/
Fund Raisers Urged to Pursue Childless Donors for Bequests (April 9, 2009, The Chronicle of Philanthropy) While most types of contributions slow in tough economic times, giving through charitable bequests usually grows during a recession, fund-raising experts say. Three new studies presented at the Association of Fundraising Professionals conference here last week seek to help nonprofit groups do a better job of soliciting such gifts by offering insights into which donors are most likely to remember charities in their wills, and why. In a study that tracked 20,000 Americans over the age of 50 from 1995 to 2006, Russell N. James III, an assistant professor at the University of Georgia, found that among people who donate $500 a year or more to charity, fewer than 9.5 percent had a charitable estate plan. Mr. James's study found that people who didn't have children or grandchildren were the most likely to make charitable bequests. http://philanthropy.com/premium/articles/v21/i12/12002101.htm
TIPS AND RESOURCES
Attracting and Building New Funding Relationships SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) has an online resource to assist organizations in fundraising. This webpage coversthe basics: Building the Case Statement, Building Immediate Funding and Near-Future Development Strategies, Building and Diversifying Your Funding Base, The Politics of Change and Constituency Building, Building Capacity and The Ask http://preventiontraining.samhsa.gov/CTW16/resdevpm.htm
Facebook Users Growing Up Fast (March 26, 2009, Online Media Daily) Facebook is aging fast. The number of U.S. users over 35 has doubled in just the last 60 days, according to new data from Inside Facebook. The burgeoning crowd of older users means that the majority of Facebook members are now over age 25. Those ages 18 to 25 still make up the biggest proportion of users, at 35%. But people ages 26-44 now account for 41% of the Facebook audience. http://www.mediapost.com/publications/?fa=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=102973
A Networked Approach to Social Media: Strategy and Learning Are Key (April 1, 2009, Beth’s Blog) LIVE UNITED™ is United Way’s campaign designed to inspire individuals across the country to help advance the common good through giving, advocating and volunteering in the areas of education, income and health. Beth interviewed Iavor Ivanov, United Way's director of Web Experience to learn more about their approach. Iavor says they started with an over arching strategy, "We had to think through what we do as a brand in the social space and how it relates to our business goals so we could deploy social media strategically." http://beth.typepad.com/beths_blog/2009/04/united-way-a-networked-approach-to-social-media.html
OTHER ARTICLES OF INTEREST
Six Reasons Why You'll Never Volunteer Again (March 2009, Realizing Your Worth Blog) The downturn in the economy is proving to be a boon to volunteerism. It won’t matter. Most non profits are egregiously under-resourced in staff, dollars and expertise. Here are six reasons why most volunteer experiences will inoculate people against ever coming back.
Congress Should Reject the Idea of Adding New Restrictions on Charities (April 9, 2009, The Chronicle of Philanthropy) The current "pitchfork" climate in Washington is likely to have a spillover effect on the nonprofit world. As the White House and Congress grow more angry about lax regulations and excessive executive compensation at the nation's businesses, the odds are that this attitude will soon lead to proposals to tamp down perceived abuses at charities and foundations. If new rules are adopted, they could lead to big changes in the way nonprofit groups handle conflict-of interest issues, recruit and keep qualified board members, and compensate experienced executives. http://philanthropy.com/premium/articles/v21/i12/12003802.htm