November 29, 2022
How affinity-based fundraising is changing everything
by Mike Alonzo, contributor, NonProfitPro

Everyone knows the two main things you consider when you’re fundraising, right? Numbers and intent. You have to get your numbers up because such a small percentage of prospective donors convert and only 20 percent of first-time donors ever give again.

You also have to understand donor intent so you can know who is most likely to give right now.

This isn’t wrong, but it’s incomplete.

Don’t get me wrong, you can’t fundraise in an empty room, and you do need to understand how likely it is at any given moment that your donors and potential donors are going to be ready to give.

But there’s a crucial third leg to fundraising, and that’s affinity.

Where intent can give you a clear snapshot of someone’s thoughts and feelings in a given moment, affinity helps you see who they are and what they care about for the long haul. It’s a much more nuanced understanding of someone’s needs, wants, preferences and behaviors. Instead of looking at broad-strokes behaviors, like recent purchases, it considers the underlying profile and motivations of donors.

You determine affinity by looking much deeper into highly detailed information than you do with intent. Instead of looking at individual actions that might indicate an intent to donate, you look at both demographics, and patterns of actions and habits that indicate what a person is likely to do over time and in many different situations.

Conducting a development audit: Is it time for a fundraising check-up?
by Angela E. White, CFRE, senior Consultant and CEO, Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates

The pandemic caused many nonprofit organizations to respond to urgent needs. Now nonprofit teams are emerging, ready to take stock of what they learned and determine how best to serve their constituents and deliver on their mission. This opportunity for reflection and planning presents a great time to consider the role of philanthropy at your organization and conduct a fundraising check-up.

What is a fundraising check-up? A development audit or assessment is a tool to measure capabilities of your fundraising program and help you identify opportunities to grow philanthropic support. It provides an objective view on assessing your current fundraising outcomes, setting realistic yet aspirational goals for future performance, and identifying areas for additional investment to be able to perform to your full potential. And, importantly, this tool will assess how well you have embraced a unified culture of philanthropy among your board, staff, and across your institution.

When should you conduct a fundraising check-up? There are some specific times when it is particularly beneficial to conduct a development audit. If your organization is going into strategic planning, an audit can help you determine a realistic plan to raise more money to fund your strategic initiatives. As new leadership comes into an organization, there are often new priorities that need to be funded or an opportunity to reflect on the staffing and structure of the organization.

Many nonprofits saw dramatic shifts in their revenue sources during the pandemic, either from an influx of new donors, the addition of new government funding, and/or potential shifts in corporate or foundation funding. As you identify these shifts in revenue, the audit can provide your leadership with an opportunity to dig more deeply into the trends to determine if it is a blip in the radar or something you can capitalize on for future growth.

Episode 30: Join Bryan Orander as he speaks with Coralyn Turentine of Resilient Leadership about the impact the past several years have had on our mental health and, more specifically, the health of nonprofit staff. Coralyn shares some ideas on identifying and addressing compassion fatigue in yourself and among the people you work with. Listen
Don Wood Foundation has promoted Laura Macknick to president and CEO. Macknick previously served as the organization’s executive director.
United Way of Central Indiana has hired Jennifer Gallagher as chief financial officer. Gallagher previously worked as chief financial officer for the Board of Church Extension.
Indiana Wesleyan University is launching a new program to help address the current teacher shortage in elementary education. Through the university’s online platform IWU-National & Global, students can pursue a Bachelor of Science in Integrative Studies. The degree track allows them to build upon previous experiences to gain a teacher’s license without an education major. Learn more

The Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation recently released an updated report that reveals widening racial disparities in education performance in Marion County. The report also includes numerous to help close the gap, including improving early childhood education opportunities in all communities. Read more

Ball Brothers Foundation has approved more than $5 million in funding for 39 projects during its second round of grantmaking in 2022. Grant recipients include organizations focused on education, arts and culture, health, and human services. Numerous projects focus on helping organizations address learning loss among students. Review grant recipients

Nonprofit organizations that primarily serve Marion County youth are encouraged to apply for grants of up to $15,000 as part of IndyStar’s Our Children and Season for Sharing initiatives. In 2021, the initiative awarded $120,000 to groups serving vulnerable Central Indiana youth and families. Applications must be submitted online by 11:59 p.m., Jan. 13, 2023.

The Indiana Department of Veterans Affairs (IDVA) is seeking 2023 Non-Profit Partner (NPP) applications from nonprofit organizations that support veterans. Together, IDVA and the selected NPP will plan numerous events to raise funds for the nonprofit’s mission and raise awareness about veteran benefits. Pets Healing Vets of Hamilton County was the 2022 NPP. The deadline for applications is 4 p.m. on Dec. 16. Learn more and apply
Get your board to help you fundraise webinar on Dec. 6 at 3 p.m. Learn what it takes to have your board functioning like a high-performing fundraising machine. The session led by Kiersten Hill include tips on assessing a board’s fundraising personality, motivating board members, and setting goals. Presented by Nonprofit Hub. Cost: Free. Register

10 digital marketing & fundraising trends to prioritize in 2023 webinar on Dec. 7 at 1 p.m. Learn about the digital marketing and fundraising strategies you should prioritize in the new year, including effective email marketing, monthly giving programs, and social media initiatives. Presented by Nonprofit Tech for Good. Cost: Free. Register

7 actionable tips to increase board member engagement webinar on Dec. 14 at 1 p.m. Learn seven actionable ways to increase board member engagement with the mission, communicate effectively, and work together as ambassadors for the organization. Presented by Nonprofit Hub. Cost: Free. Register
AmeriCorps Seniors is seeking to expand volunteer opportunities throughout its service areas. Consider developing a service site, inviting volunteers to serve in a food pantry, visiting homebound veterans, or hosting sewing circles to make blankets for homeless people. Learn more and apply
Center for Effective Philanthropy’s Giving Done Right podcast unpacks the latest results from a study of MacKenzie Scott’s giving.
Nonprofit co-leadership initiatives offer many benefits, including enhancing shared decision-making and providing a sturdy on-ramp for a successor.
Our sponsor marketplace serves to further connect our readers with our advertisers who are focused on serving nonprofits. To learn about each sponsor's nonprofit services, click on its logo.

Coworking Memberships (open desks and dedicated desk options): Nexus offers month-to-month memberships in our shared coworking space that come with free meeting room credits, access to high-speed internet, free copy, scanning, and printing, and free coffee. Best of all, you get to engage with other small business owners and nonprofits that care about making a positive difference in the Indianapolis Community. Memberships start at $59/month for lite memberships up to $149/month for a dedicated cubicle in our synergy suite. Learn more
Executive Director - Rush County Community Foundation (Rushville, IN)

Job Seekers, what do you think of Charitable Advisors’ new job board? We moved our job board to HiringOpps in late April. Now, we are anxious to find out how the new system is working as a job seeker. If you have applied for a job using the new system, could you please take 2-minutes to let us know how it is going?
Executive Leadership (CEO/ED/COO)

Executive Director - Indiana Association of Soil & Water Conservation Districts

Vice President of Residential- Firefly Children & Family Alliance

Executive Director - Indianapolis Film Project , Inc. (Kan-Kan Cinema)

Director of Development - ILADD, Inc.

Admin Support/Clerical

Foundation Administrative Assistant - Carmel Clay Public Library Foundation

Seasonal Gallery/Admissions Assistant - Eiteljorg Museum of Am. Indians & Western Art

Facility & Banquet Manager – C.W. Mount Community Center and Banquet Facility

Administrative Assistant - The Milk Bank


Accounts Receivable Specialist - Park Tudor School

Accounting Manager - Red Envelope Consulting

HR Generalist - Second Presbyterian Church

Data/Research/Quality Assurance

Analytics Manager - Richard M. Fairbanks Foundation, Inc.

Programs/Program Support

Case Management Manager - Sheltering Wings

Case Manager - Sheltering Wings

Housing Case Manager - Damien Center