Are thank you calls worth the effort?

Follow Me:

Josh Robertson

Vice President of Product Strategy at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Josh has over 17 years of experience in the industry, oversees fundraising strategy, analytics and product development and has worked with over 100+ institutions.
Follow Me:

thankyou

At a time when being “thankful” is at the forefront of everyone’s mind, my team and I set out to determine the power of a thank you, more specifically a thank you call.

Why make a thank you call when you could be making another ask and potentially receiving another gift? It’s a fair question, but it assumes the trade-off is simple; doing what feels right versus bringing in more donors and dollars.  While I’ve always advocated to organizations I’ve worked with the need to conduct thank you calls, I wanted to better understand the ripple effect thank you calls can have in the following year.

Analysis

We analyzed data from four of our on-campus managed phonathon programs that conducted thank you calls in FY14 and tracked the results for all constituents that received a thank you call versus those that did not.  We specifically looked at those loaded in current donor (aka lybunt) segments the following year.

Scope of Analysis

  • 30,133 Records (4,098 thanked in previous year)
  • 13,933 Completed Calls
  • 3,902 Specified Pledges

Direct Impact on Phonathon Performance

Continue Reading »

Podcast: Digital donor engagement, Justin Ware from ScaleFunder

Follow Me

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.
Follow Me

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

Continue Reading »

Podcast: Student Philanthropy at Appalachian State University

Follow Me

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.
Follow Me

DeveloFundraising-Voices-logo220ping a culture of philanthropy on campus is important. Appalachian State University knows this, and students are passionate about it. I learned this over the summer at the CASE Conference for Student Advancement, where I met Aaron Galliher and Summer Wisdom.

Aaron is a senior and the president of App S.T.A.T., Appalachian Students Today, Alumni Tomorrow.  The name says it all–the mission is to help students embrace a lifetime relationship with the institution, something that we know as fundraisers is absolutely crucial.

Take a listen to this interview with Aaron and Summer. You’ll hear two things. The first is that a student can be incredibly passionate about philanthropy, as well as organized, mission-focused and ready for action. You’ll also hear that the commitment from great advisors like Summer help this energy translate into real success on campus, and that engaging a team on campus really fuels success.appstate_aaron_summer

Continue Reading »

Six Ways To Recruit the Best Phonathon Callers

Scott Schwarzkopf

Scott Schwarzkopf

Associate Vice President at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
An experienced giving professional who has also worked in healthcare and insurance, Scott Schwarzkopf joined the Ruffalo Noel Levitz team in July 2014 as Associate Vice President in the Fundraising Management Division, where he assists clients worldwide with phonathon software and with other industry-leading servicesto meet their program improvement goals.
Scott Schwarzkopf

Latest posts by Scott Schwarzkopf (see all)

As I’ve visited campuses over recent weeks and talked with CAMPUSCALL users, the topic which continues to top the list is caller recruitment.  The economy is improving, and whether you are ramping up your program, trying to compete with local businesses, or just trying to replace great senior callers who have graduated, you want the best possible students to apply for positions in your calling program. Here is a list of top strategies we picked up in our conversations with managers this fall:

Get the word out

This is where your posters, fliers, campus newspaper, table tents in the dining hall, website and even sidewalk chalk advertising comes into play. Make friends with everyone from the campus radio station DJs to the presidents of big clubs and organizations. Keep in mind the prizes you give in your call center, and put your logo on them, they will get worn and used out on campus to help spread the word. The buzz you create about the job is a long term investment to keep applications coming every year.

 

shirts1

Get personal

Continue Reading »

How to Candy Crush Your Fundraising

Follow Me

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.
Follow Me

PrintIf you’re reading this, odds are you’ve either experienced the joyful addiction of Candy Crush, or have someone close to you who can’t be pulled away from the game. Or maybe you’ve played your own fair share of that little Flappy Bird, or entered the Clash of Clans in the past few years. Mobile games are big business. Candy Crush alone brought in close to $900,000 per day at its peak. These relatively simple games have pushed aside many expensive and more complex games that usually dominate the industry.

Why do mobile games keep people hooked? As this super geeky and great video at Game Theory explains, it’s all about the “hedonic treadmill” – central to the dopamine response cycle of all enthralling and addicting activities. Mobile games that have hit it big play on some of these central human behavior mechanisms. Then, they amplify their engagement by being portable, friction-free to start and socially-enabled.  While annual giving is probably not going to change to daily giving, we can learn a few things about how to engage 21st century donors from the success of these games.

Go Mobile

Apps and games excel because they are easy to access and made for mobile devices. Your fund pages, Continue Reading »

Are Matching Gifts a Waste of Time?

Follow Me:

Josh Robertson

Vice President of Product Strategy at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Josh has over 17 years of experience in the industry, oversees fundraising strategy, analytics and product development and has worked with over 100+ institutions.
Follow Me:

Focusing on matching gifts for your phonathon is a waste of time, unless you are concerned with the following:

matchinggiftsblog

 

I’m going to assume I now have your attention. Read on to learn more about some of the latest strategies and tactics I shared during my webinar today hosted by HEPData on Using Phonathon to Positively Influence Matching Gifts.

Target Audience

The use of segmentation and calling pools in phonathons is nothing new. It gives you the ability to target the right constituents with a relevant message to improve results. However, are you using calling pools to increase the volume of matching gifts and, ultimately, dollars? Continue Reading »

Report from the 2015 CASE Conference for Student Advancement

Follow Me

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.
Follow Me

PrintI had the privilege of attending as faculty at the 2015 CASE Conference for Student Advancement last week in Washington, D.C. For more than 40 years, this summer conference has highlighted the best of what is happening on campus by students in our field.

There was so much incredible enthusiasm on display by all the student, advisor and professional attendees. I had great conversations about the future of philanthropy and advancement, and saw so many exciting things that are happening on campuses across the continent and abroad. Continue Reading »

Lessons Learned from the RuffaloCON15 Fundraising Conference

Follow Me:

Josh Robertson

Vice President of Product Strategy at Ruffalo Noel Levitz
Josh has over 17 years of experience in the industry, oversees fundraising strategy, analytics and product development and has worked with over 100+ institutions.
Follow Me:

AFC_logo_2015_home

Last week attendees from 100+ organizations joined us from the US, Canada, Australia and even Saudi Arabia to discuss the hottest topics and latest trends in annual giving at RuffaloCON15. For those of you not able to attend, I’d be remiss if I didn’t provide you with a few of the topics that had the conference abuzz.

Annual Giving Is Ripe for Testing and Experimentation

Continue Reading »

Friday Update – Show Me The . . . Participation – 7-31-15

The Friday Fundraising Update
Follow Us:

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
Follow Us:

Friday-Fundraising-UpdateThe Friday Fundraising Update collects fundraising industry insights and success stories and delivers them to you each Friday from Ruffalo Noel Levitz.

Many of us are moving into a new fiscal year and for higher education fundraisers, the alumni donors are being counted. With participation on the decline across higher education in recent years, here is what some experts are saying about how we can reverse the trend.

Continue Reading »

Follow us