Practical Advice for Modern Fundraisers

Tips for Thoughtful Videos - Part 1


Do not get me wrong I am a firm believer that the best way to fundraise is through the act of telling a story. Telling your story and listening to your prospects story creates a relationship that will very likely lead to a gift.

Thank goodness the days of forcing VHS tapes and DVD’s on to donors and prospects have passed. I have always wondered if anyone ever actually sat down and watched them anyway. Today, we can use email, social media, and our websites to get our video in front of our intended audiences. In fact, you can search a sites like YouTube or Vimeo and find hundreds of fundraising video examples.  The easiest thing to do is to go to a video site and type in the name of your favorite charity (or one similar to yours ) and you will find a trove video examples. There are lots of great articles about video and social media, in fact, you can find a some of them in the Shared Articles section of this blog. This is a link to a favorite of mine. 

 So can a video be used to create a successful ASK – well maybe? Come to think of it maybe we are looking at this all wrong. Maybe the job of a video is not to actually solicit gifts but to create a different type of relationship between a prospect and a charity. Just maybe a good video, shall we say, primes the pump. The question then becomes what type of video you should be using and how do you get it out to your donors and prospects.

The first question is what type of video you should be producing. Typically, I find that there are three types of videos.       

So which of these form are of the most interest to you?  Leave a comment on which type you would want to learn about and in the next post on September 16, we will look focus on that type.  But don't worry we will go over all three. We will spend a little extra time on your choice, so please leave that comment

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Shared Thoughtful Articles

It seems that I read a ton of articles every month. Many times I tweet out a link or post the article to our Facebook page and now I can post directly to the blog. I hope you enjoy them.


Margaret Heffernan: Why it's time to forget the pecking order at work - Ted Talk

Organizations are often run according to “the superchicken model,” where the value is placed on star employees who outperform others. And yet, this isn’t what drives the most high-achieving teams. Business leader Margaret Heffernan observes that it is social cohesion — built every coffee break, every time one team member asks another for help — that leads over time to great results. It's a radical rethink of what drives us to do our best work, and what it means to be a leader. Because as Heffernan points out: “Companies don’t have ideas. Only people do.”

July is the new January

Get the most out of July plans by looking back at our thoughtful post from January.  

July tends to be like January a quiet time in most development offices. The gala is over, and you may be at the beginning of your fiscal year. So there is time to reacquaint yourself with your regular donors or meet some of your new donors. Remember donor retention is always easier (and cheaper) than acquisition. 


If you use July as a month to prep your fall campaigns will go much smoother. The more prep you can do before you are in the throughs of drafting letters, choosing lists and picking just the right image the more time your will have to thoughtfully plan out your fall appeal and its follow-up.

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