Welcome to The Fundraising Authority! Be sure to check out our Fundraising Basics and Article Archives for tons of great fundraising information.

Why Your Non-Profit Should Avoid #GivingTuesday Like the Plague

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Have you heard about Giving Tuesday (or, as most people write it, #GivingTuesday)?  It’s a noble effort by those in our profession to transform the holiday season from take, take, take to take, take, give.  (For some of the hoopla, see here, here and here) The idea is that everyone shops in person on Black […]

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The 10 Steps to a Successful Fundraising Event

Fundraising events are a popular form of fundraising.  While they can be great money makers for an organization, they can also be time consuming and expensive.  The success of events depends on careful planning.  (Yes, you should have a written event plan for every event you hold!) To help you ensure that your fundraising event […]

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Getting Serious About Your Fundraising Efforts

How serious is your non-profit about your fundraising efforts?  Depending on the size of your organization, here are some things to think about: For Small Non-Profits… If you run a small non-profit organization (many churches and schools also fit this category), how much time, per week, is your staff dedicating to fundraising?  Are you out […]

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Fundraising & Public Relations: What’s the Connection?

As development professionals, volunteers, and board members, we spend a lot of time searching for new prospects… trying to find new individuals, companies and foundations who might respond to our message, who we can cultivate, and who, over time, might make a significant gift to help us continue our work. Prospecting can be time-consuming, and […]

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The Four Key Fundraising Roles of Your Board of Directors

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Far too many non-profit fundraisers approach board fundraising as if they have boards full of movers and shakers who know how to raise money, even when that’s not the case. These fundraisers and non-profit managers get annoyed and frustrated with their boards, which doesn’t help anyone, including the organization itself.  Acting like your board is […]

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Here’s How to Raise More Money with Your Next Fundraising Letter

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I am in the middle of writing a direct mail fundraising letter for a non-profit client, and tomorrow I will be presenting the letter to them, and explaining why it will be effective.  And it got me thinking… there are really only three things that separate super-successful fundraising letters from ones that are just mediocre. […]

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3 Great Unusual Fundraising Ideas

When small and midsized non-profits are looking for new fundraising ideas, they are usually given ideas that require a lot of work for only a little return.  Things like carwashes, rummage sales, and spare change collections can raise money, but often take a ton of work in return for just a few thousand dollars of […]

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17 Ways to Raise $25,000 for Your Organization

As people responsible for fundraising for non-profit organizations, we often get “analysis paralysis,” the inability to decide on a course of action.  We spend so much time reviewing great new fundraising strategies, attending conferences, reading development books, and seeking advice from colleagues that we have trouble launching a new fundraising initiative. Over the past year, […]

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Prospect Research: 6 Things to Look For in a Potential Donor

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Guest Post by: Adam Weinger When you implement donor research in your fundraising strategy, you’ll learn more about your existing donors and spot potential major giving opportunities. But what if you could find out more about potential supporters before they even donate to your nonprofit for the first time? Well, it turns out you can! […]

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The Best Ways to Identify a Planned Giving Prospect for Your Non-Profit

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Guest Post by Ryan Woroniecki from DonorSearch A planned giving prospect is a donor who makes preparations in the present to donate money to a nonprofit in the future, either through a trust or will. While most planned giving donations are made through a will and are monetary in nature, donors can also plan to […]

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The Power of Positive Donor Communications  

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Over the past month I’ve received one fundraising letter and two fundraising e-mails that attempted to shame me into making a gift. One asked why I hadn’t given in the past. One told me all of the sad things that were going to happen if I didn’t donate.  And one hinted that doing nothing (by […]

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5 Great Silent Auction Ideas for Your Next Event

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Guest Post by Zach Hagopian from Accelevents You’ve decided to use a silent auction at your fundraiser… before finalizing plans, you will first need to collect amazing silent auction items to sell at your event. Great silent auction items will not only help you attract a larger donor base for your event, but will also create some […]

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When it Comes to Fundraising, Go for Big Wins… Not Small Savings

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Most development offices are resource-starved. They don’t have the money or manpower to do everything they want to do, so they have to make choices about where to focus their efforts. For most fundraisers, I would estimate that about 75% of that time and effort necessarily involves maintaining the status quo… making sure that this […]

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Fundraisers

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Every non-profit fundraiser is different. We each have different strengths and weaknesses, and we each have our preferred strategies and tactics. And that’s ok – every non-profit is different, each with their own unique development needs… thus, there’s room for almost every type of fundraiser imaginable. What I have noticed, however, is that there are […]

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Can Stronger Systems Make You a Better Fundraiser?

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As non-profit fundraisers, we are often focused on the urgency of our front-line activities… We need new prospects.  Now! Our organization has to raise $10,000 more.  This week! I promised the board I would add 500 new names to the e-mail list.  I better find some names pronto! With the amount of work to be […]

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Are You Using the Hierarchy of Fundraising Asks?

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During presentations to non-profit groups, I often talk about the “2-Ask Process.” This is my concept that for every prospect you have at your organization, you should be prepared to approach them with two different asks, after you have properly cultivated them. The first is an ask for money… you are asking them to make […]

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