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Welcome to 2017.

In the fundraising universe, that means annual appeal results are, for the most part, in.

Through the grapevine, we're hearing about groups holding their own....perhaps with donors giving slightly less while they wait to see where the needs will be greatest...or donors giving more to threatened causes while holding back on areas considered less "essential."

These are changing times.  How can nonprofits follow up on their appeal to keep donors involved?
Share In Real Time

Nobody's disappearing - but people's attention is divided.  And we have to respect that, at the same time as we try to stay in our donors' field of sight. 

Keep them close.  Sporadic communications consisting of an invitation to the Spring gala, a Fall newsletter and, finally, your annual appeal, just isn't enough in this year of fast-breaking news, trending Tweets, and passionate Facebook posts.
This year, let your donors know in real time about accomplishments their contributions have made possible.  About the on-the-ground results you've achieved "together" with their support.   

We need to enhance donors' sense of impact, and speak to their desire to shore up all they hold dear.  And being a donor can do that:  While someone may not individually be able to cause an immediate shift in the country's political climate, people can, in a very real way, have an effect on the life path of one human being (or more), through their commitment to a nonprofit. 
It's Not Just Money

Advice...expertise...materials: there are many ways that donors can become participants in making your cause happen, apart from money.  People want to help, and even more so when we pose a request specifically tailored to their ability to offer support.

Think creatively about specific donors and how they might be approached individually to bring their networks and skills to the table. People are glad to help a good cause, when the ask makes sense to them.  Do the pre-work to make sure you're making the right ask. 

 Not only will you gain some resources you might have otherwise had to pay for, but your donors (and prospects) will gain a sense connection to your work and pride in being part of the solution.  
It's Never Too Late

Even if you haven't practiced proactive donor stewardship in the past, it's not too late to start now.  Pick up the phone, or send an email if a call feels too invasive to start off.  Say thank you, and assure the donor their action is appreciated and makes a difference.  It's a nice message to hear - and to share - in this day and age. 
Cause Effective in the News: Tips for the New Board Chair

Cause Effective's December 2016 NYN Media Trade Tips article "Charting The Right Course: Tips for the New Board Chair" was highlighted by the leading national governance expert BoardSource in its 1/11/17 SmartBrief. 

Drawing upon a decade of counseling new board chairs, the article features tips for board chairs on how to help the board focus on the horizon while monitoring current trends; partner with the executive director to get important information without getting bogged down in minutiae; and boost the board's effectiveness to develop a team that hums.

Access your own copy of this comprehensive and practical guide HERE to read and to share. 
Cause Effective Can Help

We'd love to help you think through your donor engagement strategy - drop us a line.  Especially in these to-be-turbulent times - we're all in this together.

And remember: It's always a good time to say thank you!

Judy Levine 
Executive Director  
Cause Effective Around Town
Workshops, Coaching Program, blog posts...and more! 

The blush is off the rose: those well-heeled board members you finally recruited are neither making the significant gifts you expected nor asking for major gifts from within their networks. What's going wrong?

At this workshop, Gregory Cohen from Cause Effective will explore how you can create a culture that motivates all board members to give and fundraise generously, driven by making your mission very present in the boardroom and stoking peer-to-peer encouragement.

Foundation Center
Wednesday 2/8/17
10:00 am - 12:00 pm

Coach on Call
Cause Effective's Coach on Call program can help your organization achieve its 2017 fundraising and governance goals.  

This affordable consulting package provides you with a direct line to your own senior consultant all year long. Imagine having an experienced and empathetic Cause Effective senior consultant as your personal fundraising and governance thought partner and trusted sounding board! 

Coach on Call participants have used the program to build the fundraising savvy of executive directors, increase the skillsets of development staff, and develop the confidence of board members for fundraising...and much much more!

View program details here or send us an email to find out more. 
Invest in Good Work   
Support Cause Effective's commitment to the dynamism and diversity of New York's nonprofit sector. 
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For almost 35 years, Cause Effective has strengthened the nonprofit sector by increasing the capacity of more than 5,000 nonprofits to build sustainable communities of supporters.  We provide carefully tailored counsel to help nonprofits diversify funding, raise more money from individuals, activate boards of directors, and get the greatest value from anniversaries and special events so they can achieve long-term, community-based change.

To learn more, please visit www.causeeffective.org.