Even if the prospect of growth is intimidating, sometimes it is necessary to expand rather than wither.
At the Bridge to Integrated Marketing and Fundraising Conference at National Harbor, Md., Nadine Gabai-Botero of Focus Fundraising LLC, Joan Geiger Wood of Joan Wood & Company LLC and Isabelle Blanco of the Foundation Center offered advice for small organizations thinking of utilizing outside resources for growth.
They emphasized the following considerations:
- Fundraising strategy. Seek guidance to develop the organization’s annual strategy and help determine resources that will be most effective.
- Board development. A consultant can provide perspective, help elevate issues and encourage the board to take action on best practices, strategic recruitment, research, training and coaching.
- Planned giving. There is enormous potential in planned giving, particularly to small nonprofits.
- Direct mail and online. An organization can outsource its entire direct mail or online campaigns, or just pieces of them.
- Data analysis and management. Data management can be outsourced. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish.
- Events. Think through the goals when considering outsourcing an event.
- Messaging. Communications is key to keeping donors informed and engaged.
- Grant writing. Considerations include leveraging more of the available funding opportunities, developing proposals that require particular formats and supplementing staff without adding a new full-time position. Consider a trial run with a short proposal before the big one.
- Prospect research. It’s not just for the big guys, and it’s not magic.
**As previously featured by The Nonprofit Times
May 2016 DConnection: Use Your Skills in a New Way – Volunteer Today!
I was studying for the Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE) credential a few years ago and was struggling to get the volunteer and education hours required for the application. I had been fundraising for many years and had started to back off on attending education sessions. Plus my work (and nieces and nephews) had taken all of my “volunteer” time. As I filled out my CFRE application it became clear to me that I was in a rut, working for my organization, but not my field.
I was an active participant in the AFP DC Law and Justice Affinity Group at the time so I reached out to a few of my colleagues from that group to ask how I could get more involved. I was and continue to be surprised by all of the wonderful volunteer opportunities right here in our chapter. I started as a volunteer on the education committee, and later joined the board, served as co-chair of National Capital Philanthropy Day 2015 and this year I am vice president of education for the chapter.
I share my journey because I’ve gone from not using the many benefits the chapter offers to being fully engaged in just a few years. Now I’m putting my time – and money – right here in my community, working to improve the field I’ve spent my career promoting.
There are tons of ways for you to get involved as well. Let’s think about it in terms of skill set:
- Are you good at the art of the ask? AFP DC could use your talents to secure sponsorships for the Bridge Conference and National Capital Philanthropy Day, two of the chapter’s signature events.
- Are you social media savvy? We need volunteers to get the word out about our education programs by tweeting from the sessions. And we need you to teach others how to do it.
- If marketing and communications are your forte, then consider volunteering to refresh the chapter website, develop promotional copy for e-blasts or write articles for the newsletter.
- If you’re an event person, there is great demand for your expertise. This year we’ve got 38 education sessions to pull off, plus the Bridge Conference and National Capital Philanthropy Day.
- Are you a whiz with numbers? We could certainly use this skill set on the Finance Committee. If you’re more of a data geek, we’d love to have your help with data analysis for the chapter.
These are just a handful of ways you can get involved as an AFP DC volunteer. Click here to learn more.
**As previously featured by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Washington D.C. Metro Area Chapter