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Presentation Recap: Turning Data Dust into Fundraising Gold

"Our database is a mess."

Does this sound familiar? How about,

"We invested in this great database software, but nobody keeps it up to date."

A database can be your fundraising friend, but only if you manage it.

Last week I attended a breakout session at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits annual conference, called Turning Data Dust into Fundraising Gold. The presenters, Tricia Pekarna and Jesse Stemcha of Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota, spoke from their experience on getting a database in order, and then using data - and database software tools - to uncover opportunities and increase productivity.

Here are a few points worth sharing: [More]

Presentation Recap: Email EQ - Tips to Tap the Emotional Brain

Last Thursday, I attended the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Annual Conference. In addition to staffing our booth in the exhibit hall, I also took some time to attend a breakout session. The session was presented by Cary Walksi of MAP for Nonprofits and Kevin Watson of Hamline University, titled “Email EQ – Tips to Tap the Emotional Brain.”

The main focus of the presentation was answering the question “Why do donors give to some causes and not to others?” It broke down the differences between a person’s emotional brain and analytical brain, and concluded that when a person’s emotional brain is tapped, they tend to be more generous when asked to donate to a cause.

Here are 3 tips that Cary and Kevin shared to tap the emotional brain: [More]

How to Benchmark Yourself

In preparation for my upcoming breakout session at the Minnesota Council of Nonprofits Annual Conference, I’ve put a lot of thought into benchmarking. A lot of my work on the session has been focused on obtaining a deeper understanding of benchmarks for MN, and how MN based organizations can use that knowledge to improve their communications. An integral part of that understanding depends on organizations benchmarking themselves. Here are some tips on how to benchmark your own organization. [More]