Recently I was leading a webinar for CharityHowTo called “Tons of Money in the Mail” and a person asked this question:
“What should we include in our direct mail? Would a sticky note or brochure dramatically increase or decrease our money raised via appeals?”
“The easier it is for people to understand, the better it is, I think. If you can capture something that you feel is real and express it in a way that a lot of people can understand, that’s rare and there’s something about that that makes a piece have a certain kind of life. And if it enters into popular culture and it’s not just about popular culture, then from a writer’s point of view, that’s a satisfying achievement. ” -Paul Simon
“I have to penetrate this chattering and this meaningless debate that is occupying most of my attention. I have to come up with some one thing that really speaks to my deepest interest. Otherwise I nod off in one way or another. So to find that urgent…(thing) takes a lot of version and a lot of work and a lot of sweat.” -Leonard Cohen
I have the pleasure of introducing a new guest post by Mary Cahalane. I met her recently on Twitter and learned more about her insight on Pamela Grow’s newsletter. I just loved what she had to say, so I asked her to guest post for me, here. Mary, you rock. Mary Cahalane is currently development… [Keep Reading]
This last week, Katya Anderson wrote about the numbing of our compassion when we have heard lots of statistics and lots of stories. I was just reading about this trend in “Half the Sky” and it frankly shocked me, that people could care less and less about greater quantities of people, the more stories that… [Keep Reading]
Recently, a fabulous newsletter subscriber from Tasmania wrote to me, (Hi Carmen!) and asked me how she could improve her direct mail results. To this I say, everyone has a different key to unlock their hearts. Phil Cubeta, a teacher of philanthropy at American University in Pennsylvania, asks donors, “Aside from your family, what do… [Keep Reading]
So how to make sure your holiday appeal works for your organization? Does it have: 1. Testimonials? 2. Stories? 3. Pictures? 4. Stats? Have you segmented your appeal to donors who give for certain reasons? For instance, if you are sending this letter to people who give to your nonprofit through their faith-based institution, are… [Keep Reading]
Here are 52 ways to fundraise, one for each week of the year! Of these, which ones do you think yield the most money? Which ones, the least? If you have any to add, please leave a comment! 1. Quarterly Appeal letter 2. Grants 3. Your Annual Report 4. Sell Fruit 5. Old-time photograph booth… [Keep Reading]
Five things can make people want to give to you, according to Robert Cialdini’s book, Influence. Reciprocation This is also known as the give and take and take. If you give a donor a flower, they might feel more inclined to give money to your organization. This is also the way the free sample works,… [Keep Reading]
There’s a reason you’ve never seen a full picture of me on here! Yeah, I’ve got a long tail. It’s kind of got a “Puff The Magic Dragon” vibe. But I roll with it.
So, in the spirit of my long tail, here’s what I learned from Chris Anderson’s bestseller The Long Tail, and how this applies to your nonprofit!