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Donor Participation Project Resources

Gaming and eSports Fundraising: A New Frontier (7/14/2021)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

For this Donor Participation Project session, we’re excited to welcome DPP member Diego Scharifker from USO.

Diego is the Gaming Partnership Manager – Corporate Alliances at USO. There, he has spearheaded their engagement with the online gaming and live streaming community to obtain tremendous fundraising results in support of the USO’s mission.

In this session, Diego will be sharing the nuts and bolts of how he built the gaming and eSports program as well as the fundraising opportunities that his organization capitalized on in corporate and individual philanthropy.

There will be a brief presentation followed by Q&A.

About: The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic and Learn with Diego Scharifker During our July 14 Lunch Analysis

  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.

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We will only use your email for information about the Donor Participation Project and will never share your information with anyone else. Consult our information-sharing practices.

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Donor Participation Project

Trust & Authenticity: The Nonprofit Communications Culture Shift with Dr. William A. Donohue (6/16/21)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

We’re honored to welcome Dr. William A. Donohue, professor of Communication at Michigan State University.

Dr. Donohue has published extensively in the areas of conflict, communication, negotiation, and mediation while also conducting workshops and other intervention activities focusing on communication, leadership development, and conflict management. 

He has extensive experience advising nonprofits on their communication and fundraising strategies.

In this session, he will be discussing the culture shift caused by social media and the explosion of information that requires increased transparency, more authentic communication strategies, and leading with engagement.

There will be a brief presentation followed by Q&A.

The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic and Learn with Dr. William Donohue During our June 16 Lunch Analysis

  • Please bring 2/3 questions prepared and review this article as well as this paper.
  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.

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We will only use your email for information about the Donor Participation Project and will never share your information with anyone else. Consult our information-sharing practices.

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Donor Participation Project

Engagement to Major Gift: Lessons from Case Studies with Adam Platzer (5/12/21)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

In this Donor Participation Project session, we’re honored to welcome Adam Platzer, Assistant Vice President for College Advancement at RIT.

Adam will be walking us through his work on Forward Fundraisers, a free resource where he studies the links between engagement, cross-organizational collaboration, and major gifts.

He has prepared and analyzed multiple case studies that help us understand the sequence of events that lead to major gifts, starting at the very beginning of a relationship.

The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic and Learn with Adam Platzer During our May 12 Lunch Analysis

  • Please review the case study videos prior to the session.
  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.
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Donor Participation Project

Donor Experience Mapping with Emily Taylor, teenyBIG (4/14/21)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

In this Donor Participation Project session, we’re honored to welcome Emily Taylor, Principal at teenyBIG, for a Workshop on Donor Experience Mapping.

Emily will be providing a brief overview on experience maps and how to use them, followed by the joint development of a donor experience map based on the group’s knowledge. 

Emily’s approach in this area is based on her background working in nonprofit management and industrial design. In the private and nonprofit sectors, she has helped design user-focused campaigns on everything from bicycle safety and light-rail advocacy to community chambers. She has a bachelor’s degree in industrial design from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Emily serves on the board of the Association of Consultants to Nonprofits, where she helps lead the organization’s outreach to Chicago-area organizations. She is also active in the Chicago neighborhood where she lives with her family, including serving as a parent representative working with Chicago Public Schools.

The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic and Learn with Emily Taylor During our April 14 Lunch Analysis

  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.

Sign Up

Enter your email now to join any of our learning & discussion sessions or access past materials:

Register for Event

We will only use your email for information about the Donor Participation Project and will never share your information with anyone else. Consult our information-sharing practices.

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Donor Participation Project

The University of Tennessee’s Donor Participation Growth (3/17/21)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

In this Donor Participation Project session, we’re honored to welcome part of the Advancement leadership team at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville: Erick Weber, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Annual Giving and James Obear, Associate Vice Chancellor.

In recent years, the flagship campus of the UT system has seen incredible growth, almost doubling the number of donors per year.

Erick Weber will walk us through the multi-faceted components of their donor participation strategy.

There will be a brief presentation followed by Q&A.

The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic and Learn with the University of Tennessee Team During our March 17 Lunch Analysis

  • Please bring 2/3 questions prepared.
  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.

Sign Up

Register now to join any of our learning & discussion sessions or access past materials:

Register for Event

We will only use your email for information about the Donor Participation Project and will never share your information with anyone else. Consult our information-sharing practices.

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Conferences Donor Participation Project

Live Q&A with Jim Langley (2/10/21)

This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

In this Donor Participation Project session, we’re honored to welcome Jim Langley, President of Langley Innovations, for a Live Q&A session.

James Langley is the President of Langley Innovations, a strategic consulting and training firm, which he founded to help institutions advance a philanthropic revolution. Over his career, James has worked with institutions across the country at different levels to help raise over $3 billion.

The Donor Participation Project (DPP) convenes fundraising professionals who are concerned about the nationwide decline in donor participation (20 million US households lost between 2000-2016). 

We believe this can be solved by changing our fundraising practices and want to learn from peers who are moving the participation needle.

Discuss this Topic with Jim Langley and Ask Questions During our February 10 Live Q&A

  • Please bring 2/3 questions prepared.
  • This event will take place over Zoom.
  • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.

Register Here

Enter your email now to join any of our learning sessions or access past materials:

    We will only use your email for information about the Donor Participation Project and will never share your information with anyone else.

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    Conferences Donor Participation Project

    DPP Happy Hour

    Donor Participation Project participants got together on January 13, 2021 to share their experiences so far in their fiscal year.

    Learn more about the Donor Participation Project.

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    Resources

    Ask the Pros: #GivingTuesday social media tips?

    “We want to get more out of our Facebook and Instagram fundraising efforts for #GivingTuesday. Any tactical tips for standing out in those channels?”

    – Head of marketing / comms at a medium-sized Museum in the Northeast

    Louis Diez, Principal at marktlab.com

    Fundraising on Facebook/Instagram has fantastic potential but also a couple of issues that you and your development shop will need to look into. For some of them, you may need more time than between now (end of November) and Giving Tuesday. 

    The ideal way to go about it (which Facebook also prefers) is to set up an in-app fundraiser. Check out the instructions here. This lets people donate to your museum directly inside of Facebook. Facebook has insanely high engagement and people make donations through this medium. In addition, the platform prefers that you keep people inside of their ecosystem so the algorithm prioritizes these posts over posts that, for example, link people out to your giving form on your website. 

    Another benefit? Facebook covers the processing fees. 

    However, these are the issues I’ve come across in attempting to get set up to accept donations from Facebook fundraisers:  

    • Your page needs to be set up as a nonprofit. Among other requirements, someone from your organization (CEO/CFO) will have to provide their date of birth and social security number. 
    • There are different ways to receive the payments (read about them here). The only one that really works for a professional development operation is to accept Facebook Payments. You need to be able to identify, acknowledge, and build relationships with the people that give to you through Facebook.  

    In addition, here are some ideas that I’ve used successfully to fundraise through social media: 

    • Set up an email listserv/chat group (GroupMe/WhatsApp/Google Chat) of Social Media Amplifiers. This is a group of volunteers that is committed to supporting your posts on social by commenting/liking/tagging others during the big day. Throughout the day, staff or volunteers can go into this group and post the links of posts that the volunteers should engage with. 
    • Focus on engagement. Prioritize content that asks questions, gets people to tag each other, or is in video form (i.e. do several Facebook Live broadcasts with live fundraising updates). Also, be aware that Facebook Groups tend to have much higher engagement than Facebook Pages. I.e. create a closed group for museum donors. 
    • Do not always link out to your giving page. Posts that link out of the platform tend to not do as well.
    • Do come up with a hashtag for your Giving Tuesday effort.
    • Post much more content than you think is necessary. Further advice on this topic from Gary V here. There is no such thing as content fatigue on social media.
    • If your website has significant traffic, you could benefit from remarketing on Facebook. Also, if you have a sizable email list you can create a custom audience to advertise to. Stay away from Boosts, they are easy to do (and spend $$ on) but seldom have great fundraising results.
    • Finally, consider that email results–especially among your loyal donors–will still be much higher. You simply do not have enough control over who Facebook chooses to show your content to. 

    Originally posted at: https://www.mpowerus.org/blog-category/questions/ask-the-pros-giving-tuesday-social-media-tips

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    Case Study Donor Participation Project

    W&M’s Successful Donor Participation Strategy

    Video only available to Donor Participation Project members.

    This session has passed. DPP members can access a video recording, slides, and other materials shared by the presenter. We also hold a small group discussion the week after every presentation for further discussion and networking! Make sure to sign up here to get access.

    Matthew Lambert, CEO, William & Mary Foundation, and Dan Frezza,  Associate Vice President for Strategic Operations & Annual Giving guided a Donor Participation Project session on the details of their successful alumni giving participation strategy during their last campaign.

    Some interesting takeaways were:

    • Every donor interaction mentioned the three campaign goals of increasing alumni engagement, increasing alumni giving participation, and reaching the campaign’s dollar goal.
    • They exploded their alumni engagement from about 10,000 touchpoints with alumni per year at the start of the campaign to over 30,000 by the last year of the campaign.
    • They grew their Class Ambassadors program from 200 to over 800 volunteers.
    • Their Giving Day also grew exponentially, and they viewed it as both an engagement and giving participation opportunity.
    • Leadership (President, Board, VP Advancement) must make participation a priority.
    • It is not a matter of either raising given dollar amounts OR achieving a participation goal, it has to be seen as giving AND participation.
    • Success requires a broad-based focus, across campus.
    • Diversification of the donor base is key (i.e. women in philanthropy, underrepresented populations).
    • The main indicators of giving habits are: giving history, consistency, frequency, and gift amount.
    • You must choose one among these three high-level goals: Retention, Reactivation, Acquisition. It will most likely be Retention.
    • With Reactivation, time is not on your side. After 5 years, donors are as likely to come back as a non-donor.
    • In the Acquisition bucket, newly graduated students were an important source of growth.
    • Key drivers of their success were: increased retention (year over year giving), increased gift frequency (within a year), stewardship of good behavior (i.e. consecutive giving society).

    Learn more about the Donor Participation Project and sign up here.

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    Donor Participation Project Resources

    Monthly Giving: All or Nothing

    This session has passed. Join the Donor Participation Project to get access to our resource library with session recordings, member chat, and other benefits.

    Nicole Stern, membership director at WDSE WRPT Public Television joined the Donor Participation Project to share her knowledge of monthly giving fundraising.

    Monthly Giving with Nicole Stern, membership director at WDSE WRPT Public Television

    What is monthly giving?

    Monthly giving, also called sustainer giving or recurring giving, consists of setting up an automatically renewing monthly gift to a nonprofit. It is the equivalent of a subscription.

    What are the benefits of monthly giving for nonprofits?

    Monthly donors have both a higher retention rate as well as a higher lifetime value. Over time, these two facts compound to create important positive effects on the revenue available to fulfill your mission as well as your donor engagement efforts.

    How can I start a monthly giving program?

    You must embrace monthly giving as a new of doing business for your annual fund.

    Simply adding a checkbox under an existing online form is not enough. You must make it clear in all your outreach efforts (digital, mail, phone) that monthly giving is the default and best way to make a gift to your organization.

    Won’t monthly giving preclude me from requesting higher gifts from loyal donors?

    On the contrary, monthly donors are especially receptive to upgrade asks as well as to planned giving conversations. An established monthly giving program also frees up resources that you can invest in improved stewardship and more donor engagement.

    How hard is it to start a monthly giving program?

    These are the areas you need to pay attention to if you want to start a monthly giving program:

    • Executive buy-in. Use the data in the presentation above to make your case. A full re-orientation of your annual fund to monthly giving will require changes in all your operations and in your cash flow.
    • Gift processing. Monthly gifts turn one gift processing transaction into twelve. Fields may need to be added to code the gifts. For example, storing the credit card expiration date in your CRM can help you get ahead of credit card renewals.
    • Digital communications. Your main gift form will need to make it clear that monthly giving is the default and most convenient way to give.
    • Branding the program. Many organizations give a name to their monthly giving program (Sustainer Circle, Evergreen, etc.) to make it clear that this is something special.