As frontline fundraisers, we know that the best practice is to build a prospect's relationship with the organization rather than with us as individuals. We do this so that if and when we depart from our roles, the donor will likely maintain their philanthropic relationship with the organization. However, we can acknowledge that we naturally develop relationships with one another – it's only natural! So, what can organizations do to minimize the risk of diminished relationships when a staff member departs?
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As our sector continues to navigate new challenges, the Campbell & Company team has paused to reflect on our own best practices and strategies. We recommend taking the time to evaluate your internal structures and systems, including your database. In this spirit, we encourage you to ask: “Are we managing our data effectively?”
While most nonprofits track data on their constituents, like donor bios and giving history, simply collecting that information isn’t enough. It may even waste time as you sift through pages of data entries. Without effective data management, you miss out on insights that could lead to better understanding and, ultimately, better fundraising.
In recent weeks, every nonprofit organization in the country has grappled with new challenges. While these challenges differ from sector to sector and from region to region, for most organizations, business as usual is no longer possible.
With that in mind, your fundraising strategies don’t need to be put on pause, but they do need to shift. Outreach to your top supporters should keep happening (over the phone and videoconferencing) with strategies that reflect the current moment. Simultaneously, organizations that have the bandwidth should plan for what comes next, identifying prospects to cultivate now for asks later.
For most organizations, the challenge will be using limited resources effectively. To rise to the moment, we recommend a three-stage process—get ready, get set, go!—which any organization can execute in as little as three weeks. While this process will involve your entire team, success will allow you to secure gifts now and build capacity for the long term.
For the past few months, it’s been tougher to get ahold of Goodwill organizations, Salvation Army branches, and other nonprofits with resale shops. While it’s not uncommon for one organization to go radio silent during a busy period, seeing so many organizations in such a specific area all go quiet at once was a surprise.
As it turns out, they’ve all had their hands full because of one person: Marie Kondo.
Marie Kondo’s Netflix show Tidying Up launched in January and inspired a tidal wave of decluttering, leaving resale shops filled with things that don’t spark joy. Given that Tidying Up speaks to so many people, we wondered if its lessons could be applied to another place notorious for clutter—nonprofit organizations’ donor databases.
You’re midway through a major fundraising campaign, and it’s time to take stock. Are you still on track to reach your goals? What course corrections do you need to make to your campaign plan? And what does a path to success really look like at this stage?
Chances are, you started out with a solid plan at the beginning of the campaign. You invested time and resources to gauge stakeholder interest and develop a document to guide you through the unknown ahead. But halfway through, circumstances may have changed, and staff are often looking at the all-important campaign plan less and less. It’s time to refresh your strategy so it remains relevant.
Sometimes the best way to answer a question is to look at it from another perspective. Our Campbell Chats bring together our diverse team to talk about the toughest questions facing nonprofits today. By looking at these questions from several points of view, we share our expertise with each other—and with the nonprofit world!
Duncan Reilly, Marketing and Business Development Associate: Welcome! Today we’re focusing on one broader topic: Arts organizations’ membership programs and how they integrate with major giving programs.
First question: what keeps membership and major gifts teams from working together? Are they just talking past each other or is something else going on?
The Chronicle of Philanthropy recently published an article by our team, focusing on how nonprofits are embracing change and experimenting with technology—from donor analytics to social media and more.
“Technology will increasingly play an important role in philanthropy, explains Peter Fissinger, President & CEO of Campbell & Company. “By viewing it as an opportunity rather than a threat to the status quo, organizations can realize their full potential to advance their fundraising programs and their missions.”
In a recent Campbell & Company survey, 75 percent of respondents cited a disconnect between their day-to-day activities and their organization’s strategies. We weren’t surprised! It’s easy to get sidetracked with new projects that have short-term advantages but that lose sight of long-term goals. And although efforts to establish formal strategic plans are well-intentioned, they can easily end up sitting on a bookshelf or in a drawer without any connection to present day matters. So how can you align an organization with its strategies? We recommend balanced scorecards.
Maybe your organization needs reports, but doesn’t know how to generate them efficiently. Or perhaps your organization already generates reports, but isn’t using them effectively. If you fall into either bucket, we hope this post might be helpful to your work.
Relationship Management Reports and the metrics they represent can tell you whether or not your efforts are advancing your institution’s mission and vision. Yet, of the institutions we surveyed during a recent Campbell & Company webinar, over 90% were dissatisfied with their organization’s relationship management reporting capabilities.
Ever wonder whether your organization’s activities are in sync with your mission and vision? It is common for organizations to know where they want to be without knowing how to get there. Ever get push back from staff, who question the strategy behind their action items? If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, then you might consider creating and using a balanced scorecard.