#GivingTuesday Live Blog – 2016

RNL Fundraising

RNL Fundraising

The Ruffalo Noel Levitz fundraising management team has decades of experience working with organizations to engage donors and improve results.
RNL Fundraising

Latest posts by RNL Fundraising (see all)

liveblogOur Giving Tuesday 2016 Live Blog is now complete. For the fifth annual #GivingTuesday, our team of fundraising experts and giving enthusiasts shared:

  • The best strategies for engaging donors on #GivingTuesday—and any giving day.
  • The coolest, most interesting ideas and developments we saw during the day
  • Our own giving passions as we made our #GivingTuesday gifts.

To find our more about strategies mentioned in these posts, drop us line to speak with a RNL consultant about our suite of customized giving solutions which can help take your giving program to the next level.

>> See the live blog posts here.

liveblog3If you see something you like, and want to find our more, drop us a line at ContactUs@RuffaloNL.com.

High Conversion Drives Digital Giving Day Success

Aneesa Memon

Aneesa Memon

Senior Product Manager at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Aneesa came to Ruffalo Noel Levitz after years as a technology creator and senior executive focused on providing high quality end user experience. She has worked with hundreds of charities and institutions to produce technology-enabled giving solutions to engage 21st century donors.
Aneesa Memon

Latest posts by Aneesa Memon (see all)

Giving Days have really taken the fundraising industry by storm and as we get closer to this year’s #GivingTuesday, we’re getting questions about what makes up the best online days of giving. One key thing to consider is how likely people are to make a donation once you’ve attracted them to your site. This metric is what we refer to as conversion.

What is digital conversion?

Conversion is the act of a visitor who has come to a site fully completing a giving transaction. In the case of a Giving Day, it’s a visitor who actually makes an online gift after landing on the page.

How does RNL define conversion?

We define conversion rates as the rate of users who land on our Giving Day (or crowdfunding project) main page and then complete a donation. We start at interest and end with actual gifts.

conversion_funnel

Donor conversion rate really begins at initial interest.

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Podcast: Value of New Donors in the Long Term

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Brian Gawor

Vice President for Research at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Brian Gawor, CFRE, is a former annual fund and major gift professional who now focuses on research and benchmarking to drive fundraising strategy. He is also a doctoral student studying higher education giving.
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Acquiring new donors is important for any fundraising program. Encouraging new people to give every year is crucial. As fundraisers, new donor acquisition is usually not something we’re real excited about- in the first year it’s expensive, but we do it anyway.

Sean Shaikun, Director of Market Research, discussing value of new donors

Sean Shaikun, Director of Market Research

We wondered if these fundraiser assumptions are really true when you consider contributions over the long term. Do you really, when you consider long term donor value, lose money on new donors? Sean Shaikun,  Director of Market Research, recently embarked on a project to answer the question “Is donor acquisition really worth it?.” He looked into millions of donor records from 16 institutions who used our RNL360 analysis program to see what new donors 20 years ago actually did over two decades. Sean joins us in this podcast to unpack the results.

 

You can download the study results  and read more on the RNL blog. Continue Reading »

Increasing phonathon pledge fulfillment by making a better case for credit cards

Elaine Ezrapour

Elaine Ezrapour

Program Center Manager at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Elaine Ezrapour was a caller, supervisor and apprentice manager at Binghamton University and then became program center manager at the University of Rochester in 2013.
Elaine Ezrapour

Capturing gifts immediately on credit cards is the best way to improve phonathon pledge fulfillment and dollar fulfillment rates. The higher the percentage of pledges completed on the phone, the more pledges and dollars your institution has in the door right now.

Below are 5 simple credit card tips that are easy to implement and will have lasting results for your phonathon pledge fulfillment:

1. Recruitment

Credit card success starts at recruitment. Present your candidates with the fact the job requires them to process credit cards, because by doing so, it sets the precedent for the job’s priorities. Below is a recent flyer I used, which mentions credit card processing as part of the job.

Start increasing phonathon fulfillment rates by emphasizing credit card processing in your caller recruitment

As you may notice, there is no indication of pledge cards in the advertisement. By doing so, we set the precedent for our preferred fulfillment practice – credit cards.

2. Interviews

In the past, I’ve blogged about 1:1 interviews and group interviews. Regardless of how you hold interviews, when reviewing the job description with your candidates, be sure to address credit cards. Explain how they are utilized and why they are the preferred method of gift processing. If you have callers read through a sample phonathon script during the interview, have it include credit card asks. Avoid discussing the option of sending donors pledge cards at this stage.

3. Training

Initial training:

After you’ve selected your candidates for hire, train them to be credit card champions! Spend considerable time reviewing the importance of gift fulfillment and best practices. Set the bar high in terms of their credit card percentages. Only after you review the process of accepting credit cards extensively should you introduce the notion of pledge cards.

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Friday Fundraising Update – Year-End Tips – 12-11-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update

A weekly collection of fundraising industry insights and success stories, delivering them each Friday to your inbox. Have a suggestion for a future edition? Email Brian at Brian.Gawor@RuffaloNL.com
The Friday Fundraising Update
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Friday-Fundraising-UpdateThe Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry insights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

They say all good things must come to an end. So say goodbye to fundraising year 2015 with these helpful tips from today’s Friday Fundraising Update.

Year-End Online Donors

Capitalize on the visitors clicking through your organization’s website this month and make them your donors.  Data proves that shortening the online giving interface and making the site a more “emotional” experience for donors can generate up to three times more gifts than your run-of-the mill online giving site. Check out this recent podcast from The Chronicle of Philanthropy for more inspiring analysis.

Chronicle of Philanthropy

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Anatomy of an incredible #GivingTuesday

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Brian Gawor

Vice President for Research at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Brian Gawor, CFRE, is a former annual fund and major gift professional who now focuses on research and benchmarking to drive fundraising strategy. He is also a doctoral student studying higher education giving.
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ggeeksmallGiving Tuesday has really transformed the holidays for me. The day and movement was born out of the efforts of the 92nd Street Y in NYC along with some enterprising and socially conscious leaders who pioneered the idea in 2012 as a counter to the biggest shopping combo of the year, Black Friday and Cyber Monday. The first Tuesday after Thanksgiving is now one of the biggest charity days of the year. This year’s total exceeded $116 million donated and more than 1 million gifts.

Giving day guru Justin Ware, who works with our ScaleFunder platform, offered some great tips on how to get your own giving day organized as well as excellent insights in his recent podcast interview. To add to this great advice, I’d like to break down what I saw as a donor and fundraising geek in the donations that I made on Tuesday.

A central example of #GivingTuesday greatness is one of my alma maters, Illinois State University, where I used to work and now geek out as a doctoral student studying how and why people give to higher education. We partner for their phone program, but their giving day program is a creation of their energetic and creative advancement team.

Here are the things that I saw that impressed me on Tuesday at Illinois State and other charities I gave to and why I think they worked.

Showing where the gift goes

ISUgiveTuesday

4 compelling reasons to give to Illinois State University, all on one screen.

Giving Tuesday is a movement. We’re all getting solicitations. Everyone wakes up and quickly realizes “something is up.” But you absolutely cannot expect that the day or increased communication alone will motivate donors to act. We still must show why giving is important. This helps your donors sift through the requests and reminders they will get and focus on their passion, and also allows you to make several cases for support. Illinois State did this with four key messages which appealed to just about any donor.

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Six fundraising takeaways from a year of blogs and podcasts

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Brian Gawor

Vice President for Research at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Brian Gawor, CFRE, is a former annual fund and major gift professional who now focuses on research and benchmarking to drive fundraising strategy. He is also a doctoral student studying higher education giving.
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In 2015, with over 150 posts, the Ruffalo Noel Levitz and ScaleFunder blogs were hopping, and we also started a new podcast. I took a look back at the last year, and here are few big themes that repeated throughout the year:

money_tree

Big donors don’t grow on trees: This year, we released important research about the annual gift to major and planned gift pipeline. In a study of eight higher education institutions, we found that 75 percent of donors who have $25,000 or more made smaller gifts for at least 11 years before making their major gift. Loyalty and consistency have a big impact on your annual revenue—and they absolutely amplify future big donations. Check out this blog post, and read the white paper to find out more. Continue Reading »

Friday Fundraising Update – Giving Tuesday Wrap Up – 12-4-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update

A weekly collection of fundraising industry insights and success stories, delivering them each Friday to your inbox. Have a suggestion for a future edition? Email Brian at Brian.Gawor@RuffaloNL.com
The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry insights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.Friday-Fundraising-Update

We hope December 1, 2015 was your best #GivingTuesday yet! This Friday, we evaluate #GivingTuesday 2015 and provide you tips for your future giving day campaigns – Giving Tuesdays and otherwise!

Tactics for Giving Days

Be sure to bookmark this link by ScaleFunder! Even though #GivingTuesday 2015 is over, you can keep list for next year or put these tips to work for any giving day your organization may host.

scalefunder

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Friday Fundraising Update – Happy Thanksgiving! – 11-20-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update

A weekly collection of fundraising industry insights and success stories, delivering them each Friday to your inbox. Have a suggestion for a future edition? Email Brian at Brian.Gawor@RuffaloNL.com
The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry insights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.Friday-Fundraising-Update

Check out fundraising posts on the subject of Thanksgiving, Black Friday, and #GivingTuesday. In the spirit of the upcoming holiday, we would like to express our gratitude for YOU, our dear, loyal Friday Fundraising reader! Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving weekend!

Thanksgiving

Here is an oldie but a goodie by Fired Up Fundraising. Thanksgiving is the perfect time to thank and steward your donors. Show them your appreciation for all that they have done for you this year!

fired up fundraising

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Friday Fundraising Update – Race Against Time – 11-13-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update

A weekly collection of fundraising industry insights and success stories, delivering them each Friday to your inbox. Have a suggestion for a future edition? Email Brian at Brian.Gawor@RuffaloNL.com
The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry Friday-Fundraising-Updateinsights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

It is all about timing, so we hope we caught you at a good moment this Friday. Today, we delve into matters of deadlines, countdowns, and year-end strategies to ensure that your fundraising efforts stand the test of time!

Only a Matter of Time (Until December!)

Does your fundraising team have a strategy for a successful calendar year end? Make sure you keep these 5 key action items in mind now through December, as listed by Clairification.

clairification

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Friday Fundraising Update – Talkin’ ‘Bout My Generation – 11-6-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
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The Friday Fundraising Update

A weekly collection of fundraising industry insights and success stories, delivering them each Friday to your inbox. Have a suggestion for a future edition? Email Brian at Brian.Gawor@RuffaloNL.com
The Friday Fundraising Update
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Friday-Fundraising-UpdateThe Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry insights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

Come one, come all, because this is a post for the ages! This Friday, we dig into trends on giving across the generations – millennials, gen x’ers, and baby boomers.

Millennials

Be sure to check out all of the FANTASTIC resources at The Millennial Impact Project where you can learn what inspires millennials to volunteer, donate, and stay engaged, as well as identify geographical and gender-based trends on giving within this group.

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Podcast: Digital donor engagement, Justin Ware from ScaleFunder

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Brian Gawor

Vice President for Research at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Brian Gawor, CFRE, is a former annual fund and major gift professional who now focuses on research and benchmarking to drive fundraising strategy. He is also a doctoral student studying higher education giving.
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If you have read anything in the past few years about online donor solicitation, giving days and crowdfunding, you’ve no doubt come across Justin Ware. He’s helped propel the success of top organizations with their digital engagement, and he’s a voracious blogger and presenter. Justin has just joined the ScaleFunder team as vice president for digital fundraising strategy, and I got him on the phone to pick his brain about engaging 21st century donors.

wareblogpicpodcast

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