Your steering wheel: the single most important tool for making effective fundraising asks

Why your steering wheel is the single most effective tool in your fundraising toolkit

The response to my "it's not the donor's first date" post to CEO's has been wonderful! I've received emails, tweets, and comments saying this was the best post they've seen in years. As Heather Stewart points out in the comments to the post, major donors actually get annoyed when the CEO doesn't ask! I completely [...]

Story Conference for Nonprofits: Last day for pre-early bird

Story Conference for Nonprofits

Hollywood expertise for your nonprofit For years, Chris Davenport has creating videos for nonprofits, employing the storytelling techniques he honed in Hollywood. For the first time ever, he's going to share them! I speak all over the world, and I get to work with many great conferences. But I am really excited about a brand [...]

CEO's: It's not THEIR first date!

It's not necessarily the DONOR'S first date

Over the last 18 months or so, I've been hearing a similar phrase from a number of my nonprofit executive coaching clients. The phrase? "I don't ask on the first date." This is often said with a self-righteous smuggness, as though the CEO is taking the moral high ground. Sometimes it's said in advance of [...]

Fundraising certainly is fun!

Fundraising IS fun!

I often remind people that fundraising is a marathon, not a sprint. It takes hard work, strategic planning, and most importantly consistent execution of the plans. But it's important to remember that fundraising is fun! We get to connect donors' assets with their passions. Who wouldn't want to be part of that?! In my trainings, [...]

[Guest Post] 5 Principles to crowdfunding success - a case study

Renee Tougas on running a successful crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter

Today it's my distinct pleasure to introduce you to Renee Tougas. I've known Renee and her husband Damien for more than a decade. They're not your typical fundraisers, so when their crowdfunded Kickstarter campaign for $16,000 raised over $19,000, I knew I wanted their story. As a fundraising coach, I'm not advocating nonprofits scrap their [...]

Are you using that all wrong?

Advice booth picture used for major gift fundraising blog, taken by laughlin on Flicker http://www.flickr.com/photos/wurzle/

Sometimes, we get so used to using something, we don't realize we're using it the wrong way. Here are three tools that nonprofits use all the time. And many use the wrong way. Common uses and a better way Donor Database Common use: Recording gifts and keeping addresses. If this is all you're using your [...]

Upcoming Leadership Trainings

Enable images to see a picture of Marc A. Pitman giving a keynote at the Philanthropy Midwest Conference in Kansas CIty

One of the joys of my work is getting to speak at conferences and inspire boards. Since, I'm often asked "When are you coming to my area?", I thought I'd share my upcoming speaking gigs. March 9-11: Closing Plenary at the New England Association for Healthcare Philanthropy's Annual Conference, Portsmouth, NH This just happened, but [...]