Posts Tagged ‘fundraising’

Carrie Roberts’ Interview on The Jerry Doyle Show

Jerry Doyle interview recording (Listen to what Jerry Doyle said about us!)’s Fearless Fundraising was featured Monday on the nationally syndicated Jerry Doyle radio show in Las Vegas. Jerry called the upcoming Fearless Fundraising teleseminar and diligent efforts of our CEO Carrie Roberts, a refreshing inspiration. He commended Carrie for her wisdom, insight, and valiant efforts in raising over $80 million dollars for the nonprofit sector during her 20 year tenure as a nonprofit consultant. He underscored the extreme value Carrie has brought to nonprofits nationwide with her fund-raising training. He praised our Fearless Fundraising teleseminar as an empowering event that could be of potential benefit to millions of people.

focus 150x150 Carrie Roberts Interview on The Jerry Doyle Show

One of Our Fearless Fundraising Focus Groups

We want to thank Jerry Doyle and his producers for featuring us on his show. It was an honor to speak with him. Check out the compelling interview with our CEO Carrie Roberts: Jerry Doyle interviews Carrie Roberts.

Follow our Fearless Fundraising link to learn more about the upcoming webinar.

Technorati Tags: , , , CEO Carrie Roberts on BlogTalkRadio

Nonprofit Guru Carrie Roberts Shares on BlogTalkRadio

Carrie Roberts, CEO of For The Charitable Community visited recently with author and talk show host Bernadine Feagins on BlogTalkRadio. On Feagins’s program, Social Networking for Women, Roberts explained what inspired and talked about the needs of today’s nonprofits. Roberts highlighted For The Charitable Community’s upcoming webinars, Fearless Fund-raising, Nonprofit TuneUp, and an as-yet unnamed event on damage control and counteracting bad publicity.

Listen to the recording of Carrie’s and Bernadine’s conversation on’s Social Networking for Women

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Nonprofit Marketing: Your Elevator Pitch Is Your Mantra

by Shelley M. Johnson

We’ve all heard the phrase, “keep it simple.” Many people know it better as the KISS principle. This is a guideline which many sales people have successfully used for years to keep their products in focus. Simplicity is one of most important words people in nonprofit marketing can harness. It provides clarity. It provides impact. It eliminates confusion. It turns thoughts into action. And it keeps your nonprofit on track for an effective ask.

Can You Promote Your Nonprofit in Under 60 Seconds?

skyscraperboston Nonprofit Marketing: Your Elevator Pitch Is Your Mantra

You’re about to ride the elevator in that skyscraper and, coincidentally, a famous wealthy philanthropist will be in the elevator with you. You’ll have 40 seconds to win over that philanthropist. Are you ready? Can you do it?

When you promote your organization to your donors and to the people you serve, you should be able to describe what you do in a couple of sentences or less. This abbreviated description is an elevator pitch. It is a brief statement of who you are, what you do, and what makes your organization special.

The elevator pitch comes from the notion that you might meet someone important on an elevator where you only have 30 to 60 seconds to gain their attention and keep it. Obviously, the term is a metaphor, but a good elevator pitch is a highly effective marketing device. It offers sales people, marketers, and others a simple template to follow when presenting an idea or product to another person.

How would you describe your nonprofit in 60 or fewer seconds? (That’s usually no more than 10 sentences). Could you board an elevator on the first floor of a building and tell someone what’s great about your organization before you leave the elevator on the 20th floor? If your pitch is longer than that, you need to refine it.

Punchy Nonprofit Marketing

Elevators are faster today than they used to be! Keep things simple. Talk about the most important points of your nonprofit. This empowers your marketing message and ensures your express ride to the top. Brevity has power. 60 seconds may not seem like a lot of time, but few television ads are that long. Many Internet advertisements are even shorter… lasting only15 seconds. Such a short pitch requires a bare bones and powerful message.

If you always think of your organizational message as an elevator pitch, it will be much easier when you contact people to get the donation you want. Time is money and people don’t want to waste it. You have to grab them in the first 20 seconds of a conversation. A simple, well-worded description keeps them listening and makes their call to action much easier. It also keeps their objections to a minimum.

Create Empathy

Get your donors to like you. To quote James S. O’Rourke, professor of management at Notre Dame, an elevator pitch is NOT, “an opportunity to exploit, use, bore, or terrorize someone trapped in an elevator with you.” Be sincere in your elevator pitch. Couch it in a way that ensures the empathy and support you are seeking. Don’t alienate. You need to be likeable… not notorious. That will keep supporters coming back.

An O’Rourke caveat says it well. “If they don’t like you, they might just take the stairs next time.”

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Nonprofit Sticker Shock

by Carrie Roberts

I learned something new today from a good friend of mine in the business world, and I thought it might be useful for us in the nonprofit sector.  My friend works for a big high tech company, and when his company puts out a bid for services, they purposely inflate their prices to cause sticker shock.  “Why do they do that?” you might ask, as I did.  They do it to show value.

Once the company establishes their high value, they negotiate with the client and come up with a mutually agreeable price—sometimes lower than the original quote. Inflate price to show value…. that is such a different paradigm from what 99% of us in the nonprofit sector do.

Could Sticker Shock Win Resources for your Nonprofit?

After my head stopped spinning, I gave the practice some good thought.  Many times—in fact most of the time—I tell nonprofits that they UNDERVALUE their services and their work.  Why are we so quick to request LESS than we need; to be modest about our ask? Do we prove our worthiness to funders by trying to do more for less?

I understand there are limited funds available to nonprofit organizations; I get that.  I also understand that it is a competition, and that fundraising is really sales.  However, maybe it’s time for the nonprofit sector to take a look, for even just a second, at how the corporate sector works.  We might find some valuable lessons and tools.

Ask for the Resources your Nonprofit Needs

I’m still pondering how we weave sticker shock into our asks, but I’m sure that funders want us to ask for what we truly need. Overvaluing our work may not be to our benefit, but undervaluing makes us resentful and bitter of those who don’t support us at the level we need. From that equation comes the answer: we MUST ask for what we really need to do the work.  It may be a difficult and uncomfortable proposition, but it’s what we need to do to bring the appropriate resources and value to the table.
signaturecarrie Nonprofit Sticker Shock

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Webinar: Leverage Media for Nonprofit Development

Please note that this webinar ran on January 26, 2012.

Getting attention from traditional media—newspapers, magazines, radio, and television—can give your nonprofit’s development efforts a huge boost. For The Charitable Community, Inc. is holding a webinar to help you get noticed by the media.

Join us on Thursday, January 26 at 10 AM Pacific Time to learn from nonprofits that have learned to get attention from traditional media.

Create Media Buzz to Maximize Donations

Our webinar, Create Media Buzz to Maximize Donations, features three guests who have had great success with the media:

Lisa Rodriguez – Marketing/Communications Manager for the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

Kenny Jahng – Media & Innovation Pastor, Liquid Church.

Nicole Dunn – Creative Producer, Dunn Pellier Media, Los Angeles.

All drive outreach activities that have received coverage in local markets as well as in national news outlets—CNN, Fox, ABC, CNN, and more.

Our own Shelley M. Johnson will moderate. Find out more about this webinar on our resources page: For The Charitable Community, Inc.


Technorati Tags: , , , ,

Fundraising—Energize for Success!

by Carrie Roberts

I’m visiting Washington, D.C. this week.  I’m always awestruck when I come here.  I get the same feeling in NYC, the feeling of people on the go, moving fast, lots happening, and lots to accomplish.  In Southern California we lock that energy in cars as we race down freeways to get to work and appointments; you almost never see the people.  How does this have anything to do with nonprofits and fundraising?

Fundraising—creating bonds and allegiances with donors—is a universal constant for everyone involved in this sector, no matter where we live.  We simply cannot exist without the goodwill of others.  The IRS saw fit to make it this way in that we are not beholden to any one benefactor but instead we are community benefits; we are supported by members of the community.

Energy is Key to Nonprofit Development

I often see nonprofits lock up all their energy, passion, and importance—as if in a car: hidden from everyone.  Cars are important for transportation, but they are not the most engaging way to move large numbers of people.  Sometimes we are scared to get our message out to the community, to let them know what we are doing. Perhaps we fear they’ll question us, or somehow prove us unworthy of support.

Fundraising needs to be full of energy and passion.  Engaging members of the community is critical.  You have to tell your story in a manner that others can hear.  For the Charitable Community is proud to offer several upcoming webinars that will help you engage in energized fundraising, and tell your story more effectively.

Technorati Tags: , ,

Unprecedented Reach for Nonprofit Resources

by Daniel Gasteiger

The Internet provides unprecedented access to resources for nonprofits wherever they may be. Consider this scenario: You’re surfing the Internet and you happen upon a website that tugs on your heartstrings. Perhaps you watch a video that Youtube recommends and it shows a bunch of adorable puppies. You notice that the video comes from a no-kill dog shelter, and other videos from that shelter feature equally adorable puppies.

When you click a link in one of the videos’ descriptions, you land on a website that has photos of sad-looking dogs waiting for adoption. You read a few paragraphs about food shortages and funding needs, then, right in the margin of the page, you see a Donate Now button.

With a click, another click, a login to your paypal account, and one more click, you donate a modest $5 to the no-kill dog shelter.

Question: Where is the dog shelter? Chances are, you don’t know… and you don’t care! Amazingly, this scenario plays out again and again every day. People all over the world donate to geographically limited and distant nonprofits, overlooking similar concerns in their own towns!

Your Nonprofit Can Win on the Web

Nonprofits that build visibility on the web win. They attract donations and volunteers, and they increase their chances of garnering attention from the media and commercial funding sources.

Building a web presence isn’t a hit-and-miss activity. The disciplines of Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Social Media Marketing are well-established; there are specific techniques that consistently work to build a vital web presence. Most are easy to learn, and can start helping your cause instantly.

What are you already doing to get noticed online? Do you have a plan to develop your online presentation in 2012? If you aren’t yet looking at the Internet as a potentially lucrative source for fundraising, make this the year that you start.

SEO and Social Marketing for Your Nonprofit

For The Charitable Community, Inc. can help you develop your web presence. Contact us for guidance as you begin building a social network or optimizing your websites to get traffic from search engines. Our Social Media Evangelist, motivates companies to embrace the Internet, and provides training on responsible and effective Internet Marketing techniques. Contact us to schedule a seminar or a consultation.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , ,

Nonprofits must be Creative for Last Minute Appeals

Depending on where your organization exists, end-of-year tax deductions may not be the best way to motivate your donors. You may have to think out of the box to get what you need. Here’s why:

Tax Code Changes Could Harm Nonprofits

Charitable contributions are taking a hard hit in many states today as beleaguered treasuries struggle to overcome budget deficits. This means the traditional tax deduction for charitable contributions may be a thing of the past. One of the latest to join this trend is Michigan, where charitable deductions expire in 2012. This reverses almost 45 years of allowable write-offs of 50 cents for every dollar taxpayers have made to their favorite charities.

Proposed changes at the federal level could also affect the nonprofit sector by imposing a $1 billion tax increase on philanthropic giving. The Center of Philanthropy at Indiana University warns that Congressional attempts to limit allowable write-offs by the wealthy could “place the nonprofit sector under further fiscal strain.”

What Does All This Mean to Your Nonprofit?

Take aim and regroup! Don’t get discouraged. You can achieve success.

  • Don’t rest on your laurels. Be innovative in your ask. Be creative and compelling. Keep it simple and straight-forward.
  • Know your donor base and their hot buttons. Create urgency when you request money.
  • Don’t be obnoxious, but state the facts. Let donors know the imperative that exists if continued funding dries up. Give a worst case scenario that paints a vivid picture.
  • Encourage perpetual giving.
  • Put a face on your organization. Nothing motivates more than the heart strings. Let potential donors see the people you are helping. Write success stories with heart-warming photos. Put them on your website, in your publicity materials, in your videos, your email eBlasts and brochures.
  • Tell donors how many people are served by your organization. Show how your organization has grown because of their help.
  • Thank donors for their support and let them know their value. Do that with a phone call. It’s a personal touch that makes donors listen.
  • Use a value-added incentive like coupons, travel vouchers, tickets, or invitations to your organization’s activities to spur bigger contributions.
  • Use a wide-reaching community appeal.
  • Let donors know that giving extends far beyond the holiday season. (Example: Food pantries have to be stocked year-round.)
  • Use dramatic numbers to motivate your contributors.
  • Don’t sugar-coat the obvious. Let donors know who will suffer if money disappears.

Make Giving User-Friendly

Many donations are last minute decisions motivated by your hard work. Make giving convenient for your donors. They should be able to contribute by standard mail, by credit card, via Paypal or fax, on the Internet, by mobile phone, and through secure nonprofit contribution pathways such as Network for Good. Accommodate the latest technologies to increase your reach and your demographics. Always provide your donors with detailed documentation of their charitable contributions on the appropriate forms.

Now Look Forward to a Great New Year!

Above all, be kind to yourselves. Thank your staff and your volunteers. Thank your donors. Get ready for a bright new year full of possibilities. Make sure to check back with us on survival techniques and information on the latest changes that will affect how you do business.

And remember…

“A difficult time can be more readily endured if we retain the conviction that our existence holds a purpose – a cause to pursue, a person to love, a goal to achieve.” John Maxwell

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

Holiday Press Releases Get Attention for your Nonprofit

How is your organization’s marketing energy this holiday season? Ready to wind down and take a vacation for a few days?  Working with nonprofits definitely awards you a break, however now is not the time to stop. From mid November through the first week of January may actually the best time to ask people to give.

Our earlier post, Nonprofit Resources May be Easy to Find During the Holidays lists 12 ways to capture some holiday spirit from benefactors. Don’t stop there. Getting out a press release right now could draw surprising results; there are few times better than the holidays to get the attention of media outlets.

11 Tips to Get Your Press Releases Noticed

Contact the local media

Get the names of the contact people who handle press releases and public service announcements for your local broadcast stations and newspapers.

Write a compelling press release with the following components:

  • Write an attention-grabbing headline
  • Put all the vital information in the first paragraph and include who, what, when, why, and where in that paragraph;
  • Tell a compelling story so the news department is more likely to pick it up
  • Keep to the point and include all of the facts
  • Write it like a news story and it is more likely to run
  • Appeal to the news departments
  • Write well. News is typically slow during the holidays and a news department will see well-written press releases that tell stories as “evergreen.”

Make the job easy for the news department

If a news department can grab the story, even on a “rip and read” basis during a newscast, the story is more likely to run.

Be accurate

Fact-check your information and make sure there are no grammatical errors, spelling mistakes, or typos.

Structure your release appropriately

Know the format of the broadcast stations you approach. Are they adult contemporary? News and talk? Oldies? Your press release should appeal to the audiences of these stations and be written to fit the show formats.

Produce your own clips

If you can, include a sound byte (for a radio station) or a video clip (for a television station). This increases your chances of getting your message broadcast. Submit :10, :15, :30 and :60 second broadcast-ready sound bytes. Submit a script the stations can record as a public service announcement about your holiday appeal.

Be easy to contact

Include all your contact details and a working telephone number in your submissions in case the news department or announcer wants to request an interview. This is more likely to occur during the holidays since everyone is thinking about giving.

Be specific

Personalize your press release distribution by writing to specific people. Don’t send a bulk email or mass mailing. It may take longer to write individual notes, but will be more effective in gaining the reach you want.

Use wire services

Send your press releases to various PR wires for mass distribution and exposure to other news agencies and departments. One of these is the PR Newswire. A link to their services is at the end of this blog.

Be eclectic

Send your press release to arrive when you’re working other media events—a holiday email campaign, holiday blog posts, a bulk mailing, and so on.

Call, email, text, or post on our Facebook page if you need help!

Our corporate website:

Contact us via email:

Visit our Facebook page:

A reference guide for press releases:

Technorati Tags: , , ,

Webinar: It’s Not Too Late for Holiday Fundraising

shelleyavatar Webinar: It’s Not Too Late for Holiday FundraisingShelley
carrieavatar Webinar: It’s Not Too Late for Holiday FundraisingCarrie

Join Carrie Roberts and Shelley Johnson at 10AM PST on Tuesday, December 13 as they discuss fundraising during the holidays. Is it too late to get your holiday appeal out to donors? That’s the question, and it’s the title of the webinar.

Carrie and Shelley will provide tips to help you get attention from benefactors and from the press—especially in this most busy time of year.

Join the Conversation

This webinar will be similar to the original Conversations With Experts series that Carrie recorded in 2010. Those webinars garnered attention from nonprofits and the public sector and sparked the creation of For The Charitable Community, Inc. If you feel you might have missed opportunity marked by increased giving around the holidays—or if you’re looking for a few ways to raise your game—join the webinar on Tuesday.

But don’t stop there. In coming days, we’ll post the original Conversations With Experts recordings on the For The Charitable Community, Inc website. If you missed them the first time around, have a listen now. They provide valuable information for anyone running a nonprofit organization. Best of all: these webinars are free!

Register now for Is It Too Late to Get Your Holiday Appeal Out to Donors? as only so many slots are available: CLICK TO REGISTER.

Technorati Tags: , , , ,

For the Charitable Community

Beverly Molander of Unity Online Radio interviewed Carrie Roberts on the air. Carrie talked about the financial challenges that nonprofits face and she explained important issues for nonprofit start-ups. Carrie and Beverly discussed the mission of For The Charitable Community, and Carrie explained what makes the upcoming Fearless Fundraising webinar unique. Listen here: Unity Online Radio Interview.

For The Charitable Community in the news: Our own Carrie Roberts was a guest on The Jerry Doyle Show. Listen here: Jerry Doyle interviews Carrie Roberts.

Carrie Roberts interviewed on Blog Talk Radio: Social Networking for Women. Learn more about our mission.

Receive email updates

Sign up to receive email notifications of upcoming webinars and other training opportunities.

* First Name
* Last Name
* Email
* = Required Field
Email Marketing You Can Trust