[Strategies for Success - Smart fundraising ideas from Hartsook]

Is Procrastination Hurting Your Fundraising?

Benjamin Franklin said, “Don’t put off until tomorrow what you should do today.” Of course, this is sound advice, and it is especially true when it comes to fundraising. You suspect there’s a problem. What are you waiting for?

For example, have you noticed the same prospect names on your lists, month after month, without seeing any movement toward a gift? Do you feel “stuck?” Here are a few strategies to help you be proactive today with fundraising and improve your results:

Remember your leadership role.

You have made a commitment to drive your nonprofit’s mission forward, and this can only be accomplished if the organization is financially supported. Take greater responsibility for fundraising, even if your title does not include “development.” Ask yourself, “What’s keeping us from raising more money?” Then take action. Do it today.

Training and education are important.

If you have members on your board or on one of your fundraising committees that are not actively participating in at least one aspect of raising funds, perhaps they are not properly educated on their tasks. If prospects are not becoming donors, it could be that the person responsible for a donor prospect has not been trained in cultivation. Do your board members understand how important their role is in appreciating donors? Make sure your board and committee members are fully confident talking about the organization and how it changes lives, so they can fulfill their fundraising responsibilities.

Revamp your fundraising plan.

It’s okay to change your tactics if a prospect is not responding; in fact, it’s imperative. We all know Einstein’s definition of insanity: Doing the same thing over and over, but expecting different results. The issue is usually the process or the person – or maybe the timing. Is there a better way to connect with the prospect? Would it be better if another person reached out? Is something going on with the prospect you are not aware of? Adjust the assignments and expectations as needed, and make sure you have considered each prospect thoroughly so tasks are being accomplished well and on time.

Don’t procrastinate. It’s time to move those names from the prospect list to a donor wall. Don’t wait for something to change. Take charge, and change it.

Kristy Burns, Vice President, [email protected]

logoJoin Us on the Growing Philanthropy Tour

Next stops on the road to achieving Hartsook’s mission of growing philanthropy by 25 percent in the next 20 years:

Washington, D.C.
May 30-31, 2019
National Coalition for Homeless Veterans
2019 Annual Conference
Data-driven Donor Identification, Cultivation, Solicitation and Appreciation Developing a Comprehensive Fundraising Plan
Jason Wood

Washington, D.C.
July 11, 2019

2019 Bridge Conference
AFP of Washington DC Metro Area Chapter
Prepared for Success: Demystifying the Major Gift Campaign
Karin Cox

Los Angeles, Calif.
October 10-12, 2019
2019 Economic Science Association
North American Meetings
John List

November 14-15, 2019
Randomized Controlled Trials
John List

Past Stops on the Tour

Resources for Smart Fundraising Available on Kindle

Keep up to date on the latest fundraising trends with the Kindle ASR Media collection:

  • Reality Fundraising – Ideas, insights and lessons learned through hundreds of best practices from nonprofit professionals nationwide by Bob Hartsook
  • Fundraising Leadership – The definitive source for empowering board members to become pro-active fundraising leaders by Karin L. Cox
  • Getting Your Ducks in a Row – A tool box of strategies for effective campaign fundraising by Bob Hartsook
  • Million Dollar Gifts – Real-life stories of million-dollar gifts that will amaze and inspire your fundraising by Bob Hartsook
  • Closing that Gift – “29 secrets” to closing a gift and avoiding the top 10 solicitation mistakes by Bob Hartsook
  • Performance-Driven Fundraising – Handy, yet entertaining reference tool for new and seasoned fundraisers by Matthew J. Beem
  • Nobody Wants to Give Money Away! – Stories, humor and more than two decades of fundraising experience in which Bob explores the nine fundraising truths essential to success by Bob Hartsook
  • On The Money! – An enlightening collection of success stories and lessons learned from nonprofit fundraising campaigns nationwide by Bob Hartsook
  • $231 Billion Raised and Counting – by Bob Hartsook, Matthew J. Beem, Karin Cox and over a dozen Hartsook consultants and clients. Hartsook shares stories and “Strategies for Success” that will educate and inspire

Book Deal of the Monthimage

Getting Your Ducks in a Row! Proven Strategies for Exceeding Your Capital, Endowment and Operating Campaign Goals (ASR Media) brings together authors and resources, providing a toolbox of strategies for campaign fundraising. Go here for a special price of $10 (plus shipping and handling).

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Strategies for Success explores smart ideas, connecting with thousands of fundraising professionals. We welcome your best practices contributions or comments. Send to Strategies for Success editor Karin Cox, [email protected]. If you’d like a free subscription to Strategies for Success or its monthly companion, eHartsook on Philanthropy, contact [email protected].