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What Nonprofits Can Do Online to Cultivate Donors. Nonprofit MBA Podcast 3.11

Summary: In today’s podcast episode, Stephen Halasnik and his guest Tanja Sarett discuss what nonprofits can do online to cultivate donors. The online world opens a brand new fundraising aspect to nonprofits. The main focus when it comes to donors, especially online, is being able to enhance donor relationships and keep donors engaged so that there can be a bond.

Nonprofit Fundraising Online

There are many different opportunities in the online world when it comes to fundraising for nonprofits. Many organizations have moved online due to COVID, however, a lot was already online and have been using this to their advantage to get donor engagement.

Nonprofit organizations had to adjust once the pandemic hit because now many had to figure out how to host fundraising events online. When conducting online fundraising, the organizations still want to have good donor relationships so there can still be that strong connection and ties with funders.

Major Gifts for a Nonprofit

There are different level donors, with the largest level being major donors. These major gift donors give the largest gifts that the organization receives, so having a bond with them before they provide the gift is imperative. Donor engagement is what will keep these donors around and that’s why the organization must build great relationships with them.

Nonprofit Donor Cultivation- Relationship Building

You should use the online space to cultivate further donor relationships and to make sure the organization has meaningful bonds with its current donors. Donors as a group want to find an organization that matches up with their core values, missions, and costs. A big factor in this can also be the physical people in the organization, and these employees can strengthen bonds with donors.

A tip to create strong relationships with donors would be to check-in and have meetings with them. However, if the organization just presents a lecture and is not engaging donors, then there is potential for losing their attention. Since the pandemic, organizations have had to cut back on their face-to-face time, forcing many to go a different path to host their meetings. This could be a phone call or Zoom meeting, and with a zoom call you can make the meeting more interactive and get donors engaged, leaving everyone feeling good about the organization after the meeting, and this will begin forming strong relationships.

Once a donor has given to the organization then the donor stewardship process happens. This stewardship is the relationship-building after the gift has been received. This is especially important because it is a great way to thank the donor and can help bring in even more potential donors.

Donor Cultivation Plan and Donor Retention

Having a cultivation plan or templates can help grow relationships and motivate both the organization and the donors. One way is giving those who are major donors a high priority because they will not need as much assistance, whereas first-time prospects will require more help and time spent.

Being able to get new donors is essential, but it is also important to keep the older ones. Donor retention is to bring back former donors to the organization to make recurring donations over time. When the retention levels are high for a nonprofit, then there is a level of trust and respect with their supporters.

Engage Current and New Donors

When organizations are having meetings and invite online donors, it can lead to donors just sitting back and listening, and this can cause the donors to feel disconnected from the discussion. To prevent this from happening they need to be seen, heard, and connected with people and ensuring their time is well spent.

When getting on a call, for instance, Zoom, having the donors introduced is important so they are noticed. This could be calling them out specifically by name so everyone can see them. Having the camera on during these times is important so the person can stay actively engaged. The executive director or a board member could also greet them or send personal messages in the chat, so everyone can be seen from the beginning and know that they are welcomed and that they want them to be there. This sets up the meeting right from the start and can get people excited. After the meeting, it is always a great idea to just send a follow-up to everyone and thank them for coming and share the information that was discussed in the meeting.

Donations Through Social Media Platforms

Online platforms have been incorporating ways to add fundraisers and a donation page to their sites. Online giving has become popular especially now because of the pandemic, and there have been social media fundraising campaigns for nonprofits. Social media has become a great way to increase donations for a nonprofit.

Guest Speaker: Tanja Sarett, From Synergies in Philanthropy Consulting

Tanja Sarett is a nonprofit and fundraising consultant and a certified fundraising executive. Tanja is an onsite and virtual facilitator, trainer, and executive coach who is an Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) Master Trainer and a 21/64 Multigenerational Giving Advisor. Tanja has worked in the nonprofit and foundation field for more than 25 years with organizations in North America, Europe, and Israel. She is the founder of Synergies in Philanthropy Consulting

Tanja has presented at national venues and international organizations and her work has been published in several fundraising publications such as the Nonprofit Times and many others.

Tanja Sarett can be reached at 718-724-3788 | [email protected]

www.synergiesinphilanthropy.com | www.linkedin.com/in/tanjasarett

About The Host Stephen Halasnik, Financing Solutions

Stephen Halasnik is the host of the popular, The Nonprofit MBA Podcast. The Nonprofit MBA podcast’s purpose is to help nonprofit leaders. Mr. Halasnik is the Co-founder and Managing Partner of Financing Solutions. Financing Solutions is a leading provider of Lines of Credit to nonprofits and small businesses.

Mr. Halasnik is a graduate of Rutgers University and has an Executive Masters from the MIT Birthing of Giants Entrepreneurship program. Mr. Halasnik is a best-selling Amazon author and is considered a leading authority on building great, purpose-driven businesses. Mr. Halasnik lives in New Jersey with his best friend, his wife Gina. Mr. Halasnik’s number one purpose is raising his two boys, Michael and Maxwell, to be good men.

About Financing Solutions Nonprofit Line of Credit

Financing Solutions, an A+ and 5 stars rated BBB company since 2002, is a direct lender that provides lines of credit to nonprofits and small businesses.

Financing Solutions nonprofit financing product is a great alternative to a traditional bank line of credit because it costs nothing to set up, nothing until used, and when used, is inexpensive. The credit line requires no collateral and no personal guarantees.

Nonprofit Organizations use their line of credit to help with emergencies or opportunities when cash flow is temporarily down (i.e. Payroll funding)

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