Tag: donor communications

Communications Questions to Consider During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Initially, the goal of all nonprofit communications around COVID-19 was to keep stakeholders engaged in the mission. The primary message — sent through social media, emails, and personal phone calls — was checking in:

“Are you O.K.? We’re O.K.” and “We’ll still be here when all of this is over!”

However, in the middle stage of the outbreak, when no one knows exactly how long the stay-at-home order will last — or what the ultimate impact on our nonprofit will be — how do we keep communication channels open in a way that honestly reflects what we are experiencing, but still shows empathy, inspires hope, and motivates donors to give?

Here a few helpful prompts and practical strategies to more effectively connect with clients, donors and volunteers (i.e. potential donors).

My Top Eleven and Three-Quarters Bits of Advice for Winning at Donor Communications – Part I

1. Why Eleven and Three-Quarters? Be a little less predictable. “10 Top Tips” is predictable. “11 Top Tips” is a little less predictable, but still pretty obvious. I ripped this idea off, as most of you immediately recognized, from Harry Potter’s Track Nine and Three-Quarters at King’s Cross Station. Steal well. And often. But don’t steal from failures. Which means you’ll have to learn… Read more »

At this latest fundraising conference, I at last began to wonder . . . 
”What is abuse?”


Witness one form of abuse unique to fundraising . . . You get the training. You learn, say, how and why donor-centered communications raise lots more money. But your boss doesn’t like the way donor-centered communications sound … so your boss says no.

Why? Because your boss doesn’t know any better. Because your boss trusts her own uninformed hunches, instincts, opinions more than she or he trusts you and the training you’ve just received. 

And you need the job . . .