Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Less Is More: 4 Tips for Great Year-End Appeals

By Iris Sutcliffe
Network for Good

The final two months of the year, and especially the end of December, are prime time for donors to give. With so much competition for their attention, it’s vital to send appeals that quickly draw donors into your mission and inspire them to take action.

In our Nonprofit 911 webinar Crucial Year-End Giving Strategies, Mazarine Treyz, author of Wild Woman’s Guide to Fundraising, shared how a few simple changes in word choice and formatting your appeal can mean the difference between reading and deleting.

Be Present, Active, and Direct

Present-tense verbs spark people into action. Strengthen those verbs with active voice and first-person pronouns. Minimize adverbs, adjectives, and qualifiers.Look at how the verbs in this opening passage bring you into the experience: “Go on. Pick up the pen. Write a check now.” All present tense. The words you choose can paint a strong and direct picture for your donors: “This child is hungry now. You can help her now. Please give.” That’s a clear and present call to action. Speaking of which…

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Monday, November 23, 2015

Facebook just made it easier than ever to give to your favorite charity: Nonprofit organizations an now use the social network like Kickstarter

By Jason Lederman
Popular Science

Facebook has allowed users to donate to nonprofit organization since 2013, but a new feature launched today, “Fundraisers”, seeks to make it easier than ever for you to give money to your favorite charities. It will also allow Facebook to help engage with and promote organizations raising funds after major natural disasters.

Much like crowdfunding sites Kickstarter and Indiegogo, Facebook’s Fundraisers will allow charities to “tell their campaign story, rally supporters, collect donations and visibly track progress” for specific campaigns, such as “year-end drives, themed campaigns and special projects such as building a clean water well or funding a clothing drive.” Posts that share these campaigns will also feature a donate button, so anyone who sees the post will be able to contribute directly from their News Feed or Timeline.

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Thursday, November 19, 2015

3 Unique Ways Your Current Donors Can Help You Acquire New Donors With Social Media

By Jeannette Russell

Imagine there is a new, hit show on TV. You’ve vaguely heard about it, but you haven’t seen it yet and you’re not sure if you will.
One day, you’re in line at the bank and the person in front of you is raving about how talented the leading actress is. You make a note in your head to watch the show, but you don’t add it to your DVR quite yet. The next afternoon, your friend won’t stop talking about the show at lunch. Now you just have to check it out.
The stranger might have pushed the program to the front of your mind, but it was your friend who actually convinced you to move from consideration to action. The same process applies to nonprofits.

Prospects are more likely to become donors if they’re encouraged to do so by people they know.

That’s why it is absolutely a must that your organization leverages your current donors to access new donors. How can you do that? Well, you can start with the three social media-based tips listed below.

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Saturday, November 14, 2015

Charleston Association of Grant Professionals (CAGP) to meet Nov. 17

The Charleston Association of Grant Professionals (CAGP) will meet Tuesday, November 17 from 5:45 - 7:30 pm  in the auditorium at the Charleston County Public Library, 68 Calhoun Street.

The presenter will be Dwight McInvaill, Director of the Georgetown County Library.  His topic will be "Grants:  A Cornucopia of Riches.”

Meetings are free and open to anyone interested in the grants process.

For more information, call 843.452.4492 or email carolynlackey@comcast.net.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

New Tools for Exploring Disaster Funding From Foundations and Other Sources

Foundation Center and Center for Disaster Philanthropy Launch
Updated Research With New Interactive Dashboard and Map

New York, NY and Washington, DC — November 12, 2015. Foundation Center, the leading source of information about philanthropy worldwide, and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy (CDP), the only full-time resource devoted to disaster philanthropy, have jointly launched a new online dashboard and interactive funding map, along with the second edition of their annual research report, Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2015: Data to Drive Decisions. The online tools combine information from six global sources and allow users to view and interact with multiple streams of data simultaneously. These resources provide a detailed picture of how institutional philanthropy is situated within the broader landscape of funding for disasters and humanitarian crises and help donors, NGOs, government agencies, and media understand the true scale of global disaster-related philanthropy.

The new Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy Dashboard gives online visitors the ability to interact with aggregated 2013 funding data so they can home in on specific areas of interest by filtering chart results by disaster type, disaster assistance strategy, and geographic area. With the Mapping Platform, users can generate custom maps and lists of funders and recipients, view organizational profiles, and drill down to individual grant and project details. The report examines funding for disasters by U.S. foundations and, for the first time, bilateral and multilateral aid, corporate giving, and online giving. In all, the report documents $27.6 billion from seven sources of data on funding for disasters and humanitarian crises in 2013, the majority of which was directed to immediate response and relief efforts.

"Preparing and responding to disasters is an enormously challenging task that no single organization or sector can accomplish on its own," said Robert G. Ottenhoff, president and CEO of CDP. "These resources help foundations understand where their contributions fit within the mosaic of funding in order to maximize impact and avoid duplication and imbalances. This knowledge is invaluable to those giving to disaster-related activities, which require close consultation and cooperation among the various parties to ensure the greatest impact among those most in need of help."

The report examines disaster-related grants totaling $116.9 million awarded by the largest 1,000 U.S. foundations and an additional $60.1 million that was provided by smaller foundations, public charities, and international foundations. Overall, the $27.6 billion in giving documented in the report was dominated — not surprisingly — by government donors, and FEMA alone accounted for $11 billion in 2013. Outside of the U.S., aid from the 29 members of the OECD's Development Assistance Committee (DAC) totaled $13.6 billion, and another $2.4 billion came from non-DAC donors and multilateral organizations. Data on corporate and online giving, which is harder to come by, included giving by corporations (at least $179 million) and money raised online from individuals and organizations ($31.1 million).

"The importance of this data in learning about the practices of funders cannot be underestimated," said Bradford K. Smith, president of Foundation Center. "Ultimately, if we can provide knowledge that leads to strategic decision making, it will increase the effectiveness of disaster-related giving."

The Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy tools integrate data from Foundation Center, OECD, UN OCHA's Financial Tracking Service, FEMA, U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation's Disaster Corporate Aid Tracker, and GlobalGiving. Foundation Center and the Center for Disaster Philanthropy's joint efforts to track philanthropic funding flows to disasters, cultivate an online data gathering network, and equip the field with strategic resources for improving disaster preparedness, response, and recovery will be ongoing, and they expect the quantity and quality of the data to improve over time.

This project was made possible by a generous gift from the Irene W. and C.B. Pennington Foundation. An expert advisory committee comprised of foundations, humanitarian organizations, and philanthropic support organizations is also providing ongoing guidance and insight for the project.
The Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy 2015: Data to Drive Decisions report and the Measuring the State of Disaster Philanthropy Dashboard and Mapping Platform can be accessed for free at the Center for Disaster Philanthropy's website.

For nonprofits, mission is key to employee morale

By Katie Hawkins-Gaar

The headquarters of The Lens, an independent nonprofit newsroom, is a small, no-frills facility in an uptown New Orleans industrial park. Instead of windows, there are glass doors protected by burglar bars. The office modem awkwardly dangles above the toilet. The furniture is a mix of plastic folding tables, worn chairs and mismatched lamps bought from thrift stores. The staff is tiny, made up of eight full-time employees and two part-timers.

Despite the odds, employee morale and sense of purpose are sky-high.

“We’re doing some of the highest level of journalism in some of the smallest, less conducive-to-journalism conditions,” said Editor Steve Beatty. Staff writer Marta Jewson echoed those thoughts: “This is exactly what we need. We’re all independent, mobile journalists. A pretty space and glass tables don’t make us and don’t have anything to do with the journalism we produce.”

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Monday, November 9, 2015

4 Nonprofit Social Media Habits that Unlock Valuable Actions

By Claire Axelrad 

In my last post I suggested that successful nonprofit marketers have 8 common social media and content marketing routines that get them valuable actions. After all, you don’t spend time on marketing communications just for your own amusement, do you?

Hopefully, you know what you want folks to think, feel and do once you’ve messaged them. Then you put consistent strategies in place to achieve your objectives. You create habits that assure your success.

I covered four such habits in my previous post — routines geared to assured you stop talking at folks and begin building relationships withfolks. This article will cover the next four, which are about assuring that once you connect you get the specific results you seek.

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