Blogs

Ryan

HMA has been helping clients find legacy prospects and cultivate them into bequest donors for more than 20 years. This year, we’re excited to be launching two new products that will help you achieve even more of your legacy fundraising goals. We call them Legacy Spotlight and Legacies Made Simple.

Legacy spotlight is an innovative donor scoring system that will help you easily identify the very best legacy prospects within your donor base.

We’ve taken decades worth of our own experience running legacy campaigns, and combined it with the best legacy research and donor knowledge from around the globe.

The result is a scoring system that starts with the data in your own database, but goes far beyond. We begin with your donors’ past giving history (like many scoring systems do). What makes this scoring system unique, though, is that we have also identified a series of important non-financial indicators that will uncover the donors who are far more likely than others to leave your non-profit a bequest in their Will.

Legacies Made Simple is a complete legacy toolkit that will supply you with the templates for everything from your initial contact through cultivation and stewardship of your legacy donors. It includes surveys, direct mail packs, enquiry fulfilment materials, and telephone scripts.

This comprehensive toolkit will make your legacy program more efficient and effective. It will make your job easier; whether you have an entire planned giving team, just one person, or no designated legacy marketing staff at all.

Together, these products will give you everything you need to successfully build a portfolio of legacy donors – painlessly and affordably.

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Ryan

Although the #CAGP2014 is just around the corner, we wanted to post a summary of another recent conference that HMA attended – the Non-Profit Technology Conference in Washington, DC.

Many of us have heard that direct mail is dead, and online is the way to go. While that may be true in some industries, it couldn’t be further from the truth in fundraising. It is true that online giving is growing at a faster pace than DM (online giving grew by 13.5% in 2013), and now accounts for 6.4% of overall fundraising revenue. While this is still a small share it’s important that all organizations are prepared to deliver their fundraising message in today’s connected world.

Large organizations had the greatest increase in overall giving in 2013, while small organizations had the greatest increase in online giving. This is important as it probably means that small orgs weren't doing much before. So the big guys may not be getting all that much more online. And the rate of online giving growth was biggest in the religious sector (including church giving) which makes up the biggest piece of the giving pie in the USA.

We’ve compiled our top recommendations from the show to help integrate new forms of technology and media into your fundraising. If you’re interested in learning more about how HMA can help you build your fundraising revenue in any of these areas please get in touch with us at info@harveymckinnon.com.

1.      Your cause is mobile, whether you are ready or not

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Harvey

Please enjoy a guest blog from our friend Andy Robinson, co-author of the new and highly useful book: Train Your Board

 


Become a Great Trainer: Use a Flip Chart instead of PowerPoint


Presentation-easel

 

David outsmarts Goliath: Why flip charts beat PowerPoint

Lately I’ve been leading a lot of “Train Your Board” workshops based on our new book. I often start by asking, “Raise your hand if you’ve ever attended a bad class, a bad workshop, or a bad seminar?”

Hands fly into the air. Everybody laughs, because we’ve all been there.

And then I ask, “What makes a bad workshop really, really bad?”

How bad is bad? Let us count the ways.

I encourage them to turn to a colleague and generate a list.  Here are several common items:

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Harvey

Normally we don't talk about food on our website, but we are making an exception this week to let thousands of delegates visiting Vancouver know where some of the great restaurants are located.

Delegates!

Welcome to the Vancouver CAGP 2014 Annual National conference.

While here we assume that you would like to eat food. Preferably great food. So I have prepared a list of some of my favorite restaurants for you. I hope that this little guide leads you to sample some great food, and enjoy some of the best of what our city offers.

Vancouver is a great restaurant city. It's full of creative chefs, and an abundance of local delights.

You can dine out at our local “100 mile diet” gem, Pair Bistro, or sample the amazing ethnically diverse restaurant scene.

You will not go hungry.

I've split this recommendation list into three different categories to make it somewhat easier. First, since virtually all delegates will be staying in downtown Vancouver, I focused my choices on what will be close by. Second, I've tried to divide it into low-budget, medium, and high end. Frequently, but not always, the best restaurants tend to charge you a lot more money. Nonetheless, sometimes it's worth it.

I've also added some vegan and vegetarian recommendations. If I didn't mention where they are, the restaurants are in the downtown core. Other restaurants I mentioned are still within 3 to 7 miles from the conference center.

Good Budget restaurants

Simpatico's: Greek restaurant, 2222 W. 4th Avenue (Kitsilano, 3 km from downtown). http://simpaticorestaurant.ca/

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Harvey

Two weeks ago I posted a blog expressing my concern about Canada’s Federal Conservative government attack on charities.  The response to this blog was overwhelming.  All supportive.  And frightening.

Why frightening?

Dozens of people in the non-profit sector told me they wish they could speak out against the Canadian Revenue Agency targeting on non-profits.  But they were afraid if they did, they would be audited.  They were intimidated and that’s what Prime Minister Harper seems to want.

It appears that the Federal Conservatives are more interested in silencing voices, than listening to a variety of opinions on critically important issues.  But Canada needs democratic participation and dialogue to address many social problems.  And we need everyone contributing to make a difference, especially non-profit staff that have significant expertise in helping people and protecting our environment.

My blog was reprinted in two popular online publications. And my Global TV interview was seen by a large audience, with thousands of re-postings of the online clip.  Take heart non-profit staff, the public is interested in this issue. 

First the Federal conservatives silenced the scientists.  Now they are trying to silence non-profits.  We can’t let them get away with this abuse of democracy.

Harvey

 

P.S.    I just read an article with an analysis that raises serious questions about the reason environmental groups are being audited.

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Harvey

We teach our children not to bully.  That’s much harder when the Federal Conservative party embraces bullying at every opportunity.

Consider their most recent attacks on non-profits -specifically environmental organizations.

The government is using the Canada Revenue Agency for political reasons – threatening specific organizations that the federal Conservative party does not like,  for political reasons. 

Finance Minister Jim Flaherty has lumped legitimate Canadian charities in with terrorist organizations. This is untrue. Unfair. And damaging to these non-profits. And I believe it's something that the public needs to protest in the strongest way.

By publicly identifying and throwing suspicion on seven non-profits that are active around environmental issues, the federal government is trying to silence all other organizations that work on these issues.  And in fact, silence any non-profit that advocates for social change.

If the federal government gets away with this type of narrow-minded intimidation, we'll soon see similar attacks on activist food banks, mental health organizations, development disability non-profits, etc.

As you can imagine, audits are incredibly expensive and disruptive to non-profits. It's a form of harassment. It is simply bullying.

The CRA audits distract an organization from their mission, and costs them an incredible amount of money and time having to deal with the audits. This of course also wastes donor dollars.

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Harvey

I believe that the great leap forward in philanthropic giving will not be new techniques to convince major donors to part with their money. Nor will it be different kinds of special events or more targeted mail.

I believe that the leap forward will come when people realize how wonderful giving is, and how they will personally benefit, as much as those they help.

When this happens, donors will give 100 to 500% more than they do currently. I've seen it happen.

A few years ago, I wrote a book with a friend, Azim Jamal.  The book is called, “The Power of Giving: How Giving Back Enriches Us All”.  In the spirit of giving, we decided to give all royalties to non-profits.

The book turned into a number one bestseller in Canada and the USA. However, what was much more exciting was the impact the book had on some people.

Here's a story related to the book (and one of my all-time favorite stories):

A friend of Azim's, Ashokji, gave away hundreds of copies of The Power of Giving to people in India.

In response to one of these book gifts, he received the following note:

‘My dearest Ashokji,

It is with deepest gratitude that I write this letter to you. Thank you for sharing with me the wonder of the book "The Power of Giving".

You are no stranger to the unfortunate circumstances which befell my family a year ago. The passing of both my parents within a span of 15 days of each other was a blow that would have been very difficult to recover from if it was not for the love of friends like Sumanji and yourself. My wife Neha and I have been constantly inspired by your kind words and my interactions with you always leave me nourished, fulfilled and uplifted.

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Harvey

Would you like free advice on how to retain more donors?

Frank Barry recruited 14 North American experts to help show you how best to keep your donors. You know it's great to acquire new donors, but unless you keep the donors that you have, you’ll never grow your program.

I wrote the chapter on monthly giving. And as we all know, this is simply the best way to keep donors renewing every year.

Now I'm sure you'll know many of the ideas in this e-book. In fact, you might even know almost all of them. But the core question is: are you and your coworkers practicing them? My belief is that one of the most useful things you can do with this book is to share it with your co-workers. Especially the ones who don't want to do what is necessary to renew your donors.

I'm pretty sure that if your CEO reads this book, it will help them make more strategic decisions.  And that will mean more donors will continue giving to you.

Here's a link to get your free copy: http://www.npengage.com/online-fundraising/donor-retention-fundraising-ideas/

Harvey

 

PS I'll be teaching a donor retention class about monthly giving at the AFP International conference in San Antonio on Monday, March 24th. If you make to the conference, I hope to see you there.

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Katie

In 2013, our client Dr. H Bliss Murphy Cancer Care Foundation asked us to develop and execute their year-end email campaign.

With HMA’s Digital Strategist, Scott Baker, at the wheel, we developed a three-part email series.

Our goal was to remind donors about the needs of cancer patients over the holidays. We also wanted to encourage donors to make a gift in time for their 2013 tax receipt.

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Lynne

PostboxesWe know that Canada Post’s recent announcement about the pending changes in home delivery service have lots of folks in our sector understandably concerned and confused.
 
Here’s a summary of what we know, and what our assessment of the impact will be. For a more detailed discussion, please do get in touch.

What we know:

  • The 1/3 of Canadian households that still receive mail at their door will be converted to community mailbox delivery over the next five years.
  • The price of Lettermail (ie. the price of a stamp) will go up dramatically from 63 cents to $1.00 when a single stamp is purchased. Customers who buy stamps in booklets and coils will pay 85 cents which means, of course, that it is wise to shop in bulk. Anything you do through a mailhouse should be at the 85 cent rate, as they buy in coils and booklets.
  • However – and this is important – the price of Admail will only go up by the amount it was already scheduled to according to the 5-year plan released about 2 years ago, which is about 2-3 cents. This is important because the vast majority of direct mail which we do for clients goes out by Admail (either Addressed or Unaddressed). This means that the cost of your bulk direct mail drops will remain relatively unchanged but will increase yearly in January.

What do we think about it? :

  • Well, we do have concerns about the extra burden on seniors who will now have to leave their homes in all kinds of Canadian weather to visit their mailboxes. But in terms of how this will impact your donor program …

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