Categories
Donor Participation Project

Donor-Focused Communication

This session has passed. To access recordings of past sessions, join the Donor Participation Project community at joindpp.org.

It’s not about you. It’s about the donor.

​Are your communications connecting with your donors or ending up in the literal or virtual recycle bin? Join us as Debbie Meyers shares a brisk top ten list of ways to make your appeals, acknowledgments and emails more donor focused and more effective. 

​As Chief Inspiration Officer for EDiT!, Debbie Meyers helps advancement professionals find that spark of inspiration in their writing. Learn more about her and her work on her website.

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 Your Colleagues During our August 17 Lunch Analysis

  • ​This event will take place over Zoom.
  • ​The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.
Categories
Conferences Donor Participation Project

International Videogaming Giving Day

Join the International Videogaming Giving Day to showcase your nonprofit, engage your community, and attract diverse groups to your org!

BREADTH: Two thirds of people in the US play video games.

PHILANTHROPY: Gamers and streamers raise millions of dollars for nonprofits every year!

WHEN: On November 15, 2022, the US National Philanthropy Day

Interested? We’ll provide you with everything you need to learn about video game, streaming, and esports fundraising. We’ll give you tools, training, and info to invite your community to the event.

Here are some of the nonprofits that have already expressed interest:

We expect over 100 participating nonprofits. Don’t miss out!

Want to learn more? Here’s how it works

  1. Join the waitlist for the National Videogaming Giving Day on 11/15

    1. Each nonprofit will choose one or multiple champions among their staff. No prior gaming knowledge required! Champions will receive training over the month of September through this course: Level Up your Gaming Fundraising
    1. Nonprofit champions will compete against each other in a fun, family-oriented game. They will be able to win donations for their nonprofits in different categories 
    1. Invite your entire community to cheer your champions along. If you want to, you’ll be able to invite them to make gifts to your nonprofit through your preferred channel.

    What’s in it for my nonprofit? 

    • Capacity building and professional development: learn about this new way to engage and fundraise
    • Engage your donor community in a new and exciting way through this national event 
    • If you decide to, invite them to support you on your nonprofit’s streaming page
    • Join a nationwide event with wide visibility and a built-in audience

    Nonprofit champions will have a chance to win donations for their nonprofit based on how they do in the fun, family-oriented game we’ll be playing.

    FAQ

    Is there a cost for charities to participate?

    The Videogaming Giving Day is open to all nonprofits at no cost. The 4-week course has a $150 fee to pay our speakers. If your org doesn’t have a professional development budget, there are full scholarships available.

    Does the charity select staff to participate as a video gamer or do we recruit donors?

    The course is designed to teach fundraisers about gaming, but you can certainly recruit a donor to be your champion for the giving day (and have them go through the course too).

    You shared a link for a 4-week training on this topic. Is this a resource or a must do?

    The course is optional.

    How do charities recruit participants?

    We’ll give you assets (social media/email) to invite your community to join your champion’s stream during Videogaming Giving Day.

    What is the prize money and who is offering it? Do we also get the opportunity to raise funds in addition to the prize money?

    We’re finalizing details on prize categories and amounts, which will be offered by sponsors. Winners of the tournament will be able to designate a nonprofit to receive the donations.

    What resources are needed from our end to make this successful?

    It can be as simple as having a staff member go through the course and learn the tools, most of which are free.

    If you’d like to fundraise during the Videogaming Giving Day, you can use your own giving platform. You will also learn how to use some of the giving platforms most commonly used by streamers/gamers.

    About

    This is an initiative of the Donor Participation Project, a community of 1,800+ fundraisers who meet monthly to increase the number of people giving to nonprofits.

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Fundraising Leadership Skills with Craig Evans (7/12/22)

    Join Craig Evans, Associate Dean, Development and External Relations at the Johns Hopkins University School of Education.

    Are you a fundraiser new to a leadership role? Being a leader is a different set of skills. Craig will discuss some ways to build a great culture and team and give you some ideas on how to implement them.

    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 Your Colleagues During our July 12 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 and access past materials:

    Join this event

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

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Fundraiser’s Pep Talk with Kenna Barrett & Presenting DPP Intro Club! (6/15/2022)

    This session has passed. Join the Donor Participation Project to get access to a video recording, upcoming sessions, and other benefits.

    Join Kenna Barrett, incoming Chief Development Officer for the UMD University Libraries, for a conversation on the inner game of fundraising.

    Need a Pep Talk? How to handle even the most challenging fundraising interactions

    Whether you’re an introvert, an extrovert, or in between, sometimes our brains get in the way of our own progress as fundraisers (and as human beings). In this talk, Kenna shares some of the techniques that she has adapted from neighboring fields to position yourself for success.

    We will also be presenting the DPP Intro Club! A way for you to meet fellow DPPers 1:1 for networking, career advice, or just sharing common challenges.

    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 Your Colleagues During our June 15 Lunch Analysis

    • Before this session, please review Kenna’s articles in Fairygodboss and NonprofitPRO
    • 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 and access past materials:

    Join this event

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

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Video Marketing for Fundraisers (5/18/2022)

    This session has passed. Join the Donor Participation Project to get access to a video recording, upcoming sessions, and other benefits.

    If you want to use more video in your fundraising, join David Phu for a brief presentation and conversation on what you should be thinking about.

    (Sneak peek: videos that work don’t require a huge production budget!)

    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 Your Colleagues During our May 18 Lunch Analysis

    • Please connect with David on LinkedIn and review his latest posts so you are familiar with his general philosophy on video for nonprofits.
    • This event will take place over Zoom.
    • The session will be recorded and accessible post-event for DPP members only.
    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Starting from the End: Purdue’s Approach to Transformational Gifts (3/2/2022)

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

    The Purdue Optimizes Development Support (PODS) concept is designed to optimize operational support with an end goal of maximizing our revenue generating potential at Purdue. Through the PODS, the Purdue for Life Foundation is creating a culture of shared purposes and responsibilities, while acknowledging the independencies that produce fundraising success.

    Join John Dinkens, Michele Miller, and Amber Turner in a discussion about the A (acquisition), B (building), C’s (customization)—and D (data-driven decisions)—and how they use them within and across their departments and to effectively collaborate and increase Purdue’s ability to raise money.

    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 Your Colleagues During our March 2 Lunch Analysis

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

    New Marketing Realities for Nonprofits with Mark Schaefer (2/16/22)

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

    We are privileged to welcome Mark Schaefer as the facilitator for this month’s Lunch Analysis.

    Mark is a globally-recognized author, speaker, podcaster, and business consultant. He is a prolific writer and speaker whose work sits at the intersection of marketing, technology, and humanity. He has advanced degrees in marketing and organizational development, holds seven patents, and is a faculty member of the graduate studies program at Rutgers University.

    He is the best-selling author of nine popular books including the
    very first book on influence marketing. His blog, GROW, and podcast “The Marketing Companion” are ranked among the top-rated publications in the marketing field. His clients range from successful start-ups to global brands such as Adidas, Johnson & Johnson, Dell, The U.S. Air Force, and the UK Government. And he has appeared on media channels such as CNN, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and CBS News.

    In this session, Mark will guide us through his research on where marketing is headed and how his findings in his books Cumulative Advantage and Marketing Rebellion apply to the nonprofit sector.

    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 Your Colleagues During our February 16 Lunch Analysis

    Sign Up

    Enter your email now to join any of our learning & discussion sessions and 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.

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Why People Give: Fundraising Recommendations from Behavioral Science by Russell James, Ph.D. (1/19/2022)

    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! Sign up here to get access.

    In this session we will review some findings from experimental research and see how this can apply to effective communications in fundraising.  Beyond just gleaning a few tips and tricks, we will discuss how these findings reflect underlying realities about the process of charitable decision making.

    Russell James, J.D., Ph.D., CFP® is a chaired professor in the Department of Personal Financial Planning at Texas Tech University where he directs the on-campus and online graduate program in Charitable Financial Planning (planned giving) and also teaches a graduate course in behavioral finance.  Prior to his academic career he worked in planned gifts fundraising and then major gifts fundraising for 11 years.

    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 Your Colleagues During our January 19 Lunch Analysis

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project

    Manage Complex Projects with Airtable by Jaemi Loeb (11/17/2021)

    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! Sign up here to get access.

    We are honored to feature DPP member Jaemi Loeb, Senior Director of Cultural Arts at the JCC of Metro Detroit, in a demonstration of how she manages complex fundraising projects using the popular no-code tool Airtable.

    Dr. Loeb is a long-time arts entrepreneur and tech enthusiast, which has made her obsession with efficiency and information quality seem like a job skill. Airtable’s powerful automation, data visualization, and integration tools make it one of the best databases on the market. But, it’s most powerful feature is that it is shockingly easy to use.

    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 Your Colleagues During our November 17 Lunch Analysis

    • Strongly suggested pre-viewing from Jaemi: Airtable’s YouTube channel
    • 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 and 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.

    Categories
    Donor Participation Project Resources

    Lessons from the Donor Participation Project

    August of 2021 marks the one-year anniversary of launching the Donor Participation Project. From those initial sessions with just a handful of participants to over 1,000 fundraisers today, the amount of learning has been incredible.

    What is the Donor Participation Project?

    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.

    Lessons Learned from the DPP

    All of our sessions are recorded and available in the donor participation project resource library.

    Community

    Our very first speaker, Angie Thurston presented on the importance of “deep community” for organizations that want to attract and keep millennials.

    I believe her findings apply to all age groups. People seek community. Activities that create community have these characteristics:

    • They are recurring and happen with some frequency
    • They are participatory
    • They have a clear purpose. Ideally, that purpose is aligned with your organization’s.
    • And, because you can’t do it all, they often require volunteer leaders

    These types of activities are also a great environment to create vulnerability loops, which is the fastest way to create trust. Trust is a requirement for any type of significant giving. So strengthening your nonprofit’s communities makes business sense.

    Nonprofit Communications

    Dr. Bill Donohue from Michigan State shared how poorly nonprofits are communicating in the new world of social media. Nonprofits should communicate in ways that generate feelings of trust and authenticity. They often achieve the opposite effect.

    Here were his recommendations. Nonprofit communications must be:

    • Frequent. As in weekly or even daily depending on the channel. The annual report is a thing of the past.
    • Mission-focused. Every single piece of communication must breathe your nonprofit’s purpose.
    • Authentic. Forget highly produced fluff pieces. Think of something you could record on your camera.
    • Responsive. People will comment and have thoughts. Some of them will be negative! Modern nonprofits will be able to constructively engage with everyone.

    Adam Platzer’s presentation on the path that leads from engagement to major gifts also emphasized how important it is that you respond in a timely manner. Timely as in within 24 hours! His motto?

    Shock Them with Your Follow-up!

    Adam Platzer

    Another way to ensure timely communication and stewardship is through marketing automation. We organized a study group to explore this topic over several weeks.

    To build trust, your nonprofit must be perceived as:

    • Competent. This is why timely responses are so important. Timeliness signals competency.
    • Honest. Are you telling the truth?
    • Benevolent. Do you have my best interests in mind? Or are you self-serving?
    • Open to feedback. Do you respond well to suggestions for improvement and other ideas?

    Case Studies

    Part of our group’s mandate is to learn from those who are successfully moving the donor participation needle. We were honored to have a chance to chat and learn from leaders at these institutions:

    New Ways of Giving

    The DPP also brought leading experts in these emerging areas:

    Nicole Stern generously shared her game plan for automatically recurring gifts AKA monthly gifts.

    Donors that give this way have much higher retention and give more lifetime. What is not to love?

    Well, successfully building a monthly giving program involves reworking your business to make it “monthly giving-first.” It won’t work as a simple add-on to existing giving methods.

    Leading with Engagement

    Sustainable philanthropic success requires looking holistically at your fundraising operations.

    We were fortunate to have a conversation with one of the leading proponents of an integrated, human approach to transformative philanthropy: Live Q&A with Jim Langley, Langley Innovations

    Design thinking is a discipline that is especially good at helping us reenvision existing problems and find new solutions. In Donor Experience Mapping with Emily Taylor, teenyBIG, we actually got to collaboratively build a donor engagement map for a fictitious organization: teenyBIG University!