Using Sales to Teach Fundraisers New Techniques

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] I spent over 20 years in the higher education space for a learning company. When I started we were selling ink on paper and printed textbooks to professors and committees of professors who were searching for the best materials to use in their courses. During that time the higher education space transformed from printed materials to online solutions, including ebooks and homework systems. I witnessed the transformation to nearly complete digital from print only. Instead of selling textbooks, we found ourselves selling ‘keycodes’ for digital access. Many times we sold the idea of a solution. That is, something that…

6 Bad Fundraising Habits to Leave in 2019

2020 is upon us. New year, new decade, new start! Now is the time to take a look at your fundraising program and determine what habits have been serving your community, and those that haven't. These six are a good start on practices to ditch and leave behind in 2019. 1. Poor donor communication and appreciation Everyone loves that friend who sends a thank you card for a birthday gift. It feels good to be appreciated! This applies to our donors too. As busy fundraising professionals, we can get so caught up in the fund-raising part of a campaign, that…

Getting the Most Out of Fundraising Conferences in 2020

Here we are, on the brink of a new calendar year: 2020. What lies ahead? It’s a time to both enhance your tried and true fundraising practices as well as experiment with a few new ideas and see what resonates with your alumni and donors. In addition to all the progress you’ll make from behind your desk, you’ll also carve out time for some good old fashioned professional development. So, it’s time to take out the calendar folks (or open GoogleCal), decide which advancement conferences you’ll be attending in 2020, and gear up! Maybe you’ll dive headfirst into one of…

4 Ways to Stand Out and Convert Year-End Donors

Ahh the end of the calendar year. A time of changing colors, holiday cheer, and the pressure to make the most of the giving season and reach fundraising goals. While there are often many moving pieces and the potential for overwhelm, this is a great opportunity to try some creative approaches with your giving program. There is a lot of noise at the end of the year. Whether it’s due to tax considerations or that it just seems like the “right” time of year, 31% of annual gifts are made during the month of December. With this knowledge, organizations often…

Giving Tuesday: Learning from the Leaders

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_single_image image="11855" img_size="large" alignment="center"][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] #1 Get the word out early Yes, you’ve heard it a thousand times. But there’s a reason. The University of Wyoming planned ahead like a champ, posting in early November across their social networks and creating a Facebook event for people to save the date. They even employed a countdown two weeks out to pump up their community! Colorado State University used early emails to energize their student and alumni populations by highlighting the urgency of helping individuals facing food insecurity and tying dollars raised directly to meals provided. [/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="11802" img_size="medium" alignment="center"][/vc_column][vc_column width="1/3"][vc_single_image image="11803"…

#GivingTuesday: One Size Doesn’t Fit All

History Giving Tuesday is an international day that encourages giving back. After the consumerism-fueled Black Friday and Cyber Monday, Giving Tuesday aims to create a moment focused on supporting organizations that make the world a better place. Beginning in 2012, this event has grown to raise millions of dollars in over 150 countries. In 2018, over $400 million was raised from 3.6 million gifts, making 14.2 billion social impressions. This movement has helped ignite the social aspect of giving, starting off the year-end giving season with a bang. This year, Giving Tuesday will be held on December 3, 2019. Why…

Another Day, Another Dollar: Annual Giving in a Nutshell

How you feel after reaching the finish line of the fiscal year... When people ask you what working on Giving Day is like... When the major gifts team says you aren't bringing any donors into the pipeline, but it's actually what you do every day... When you come back to demanding emails after campus closure... When a new student caller is getting their first gift... When you are questioned about an email subject line that you already A/B tested... When you're trying to relate to current students while training them to crowdfund for their senior gift campaign... When your friend…

The Value of Building a ‘Story Marketplace’: Chapter 1

[vc_row][vc_column][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Stories are as old as we are human. Stories in some ways make us human. A story is an account of a series of related events and/or experiences. Stories shape us, influence us, motivate us, inform us, and inspire us. Oral storytelling is the earliest method for sharing narratives. During most people's childhoods, narratives are used to guide them on proper behavior, cultural history, the formation of a communal identity, and values. After oral storytelling came paper and ink, then type then print, and now we have digital as the primary source of our stories. It has been said that non-profits have…

Story Generation: Fundraising Event Recap

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] On June 19, we hosted Story Generation: Launching the Next Generation of Fundraising. During this hour-long online event, we heard from a variety of thought leaders about best practices, success stories, and tips to implement in fundraising programs.  The content was presented as recordings from our live Fort Collins event, self-recorded presentations, and fun short films that highlighted different characters involved in the fundraising experience.  All of the presentations fell under one of the three pillars that we believe to be the foundation of a successful fundraising program: Storytelling, Fundraising Initiatives, and the Donor Experience. See what we learned…

How to Use Social Ads to Drive Fundraising Results

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text] The Digital Landscape In a digital world, we know being visible on social media is important. With 2.32 billion monthly users on Facebook and 500 million users on LinkedIn, a majority of your audience is likely online. Beyond increasing general visibility for your organization, you can use social media to increase your fundraising numbers and engage donors online. Check out our post 5 Ways to Maximize Your Campaign Fundraising with Social Media for tips on laying the foundation of your social media presence. A Case for Social Ads Nearly all organizations are on social media, but are posts reaching…

25+ Year-Round Creative Fundraising Ideas

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Now is a great time to plan out your calendar of events for the rest of the year, and we have some  creative fundraising ideas to inspire philanthropy all year round. Try some of these creative ways of engaging your community in fun experiences while raising funds for the great causes you support.[/vc_column_text][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner][vc_single_image image="9213" img_size="full" alignment="center"][/vc_column_inner][/vc_row_inner][vc_row_inner][vc_column_inner][vc_column_text] WINTER (6) January New Year’s Eve - New Year’s Eve is a great opportunity to celebrate new beginnings. Are the funds that your organization supports that helps people start anew? Throw a party where the donation receipt is your ticket to access the fun!…

6 Creative Fall Fundraising Ideas

Fall is one of the busiest times of year for philanthropy, so it's a great time to try out new fundraising ideas to keep your community engaged. Check out the six fall fundraising ideas below to see if you can incorporate them into your efforts. 1.Rake-a-thon Something as simple as raking leaves to generate donations can raise the money your organization needs. Get volunteers together and have them collect donations in return for a yard raking. Leaves can get annoying in the fall and people love to get involved to support a cause, which makes this the perfect opportunity. You…

Katie Haystead

Katie Haystead

Senior Vice President, Partnerships

With over a decade of experience working with K12 schools and higher education institutions’ fundraising efforts, Katie Haystead now oversees the partnerships team at Community Funded. Her passion for partner success and satisfaction aligns with Community Funded’s priorities and Katie’s unique background is well suited to manage the day to day operations of our partnerships team as well as new market acquisition.

Prior to joining the team at Community Funded, Katie served many roles within the Fundraising Division at Ruffalo Noel Levitz. Her experience ranges from working onsite and remotely with clients executing phonathon programs, developing annual giving strategies, onsite consultations and also developing multichannel strategies allowing for strong synergy between annual giving channels and creating strong major and planned gift pipelines.

Katie is based in Metro Detroit and is a graduate of Central Michigan University, where she worked for the phonathon for 3 years while working towards her History Major.

Kim Jennings

Kim Jennings

Senior Generosity Strategist, Generis

Kim Jennings, CFRE is a skilled fundraising leader who believes in the power of Christian education to raise up thoughtful, strong, committed leaders who can make our world a better place for all.

Kim Jennings

Todd Turner

Director of Digital Strategies, Generis

In addition to his 11 years overseeing Chuck Swindoll’s Insight Living Ministries communications department, Todd Turner has worked as a digital strategist for faith based organizations across the globe..

Kim Jennings

Jennifer Perrow

Senior Generosity Strategist, Generis

Jennifer is a skilled fundraising and communications professional who helps ministries articulate vision, communicate mission, and raise abundant funds to advance Kingdom priorities.