Skip Navigation
Print Share

AFP Top Ten Fundraising Tips (Week of July 4, 2018): Donor Pyramids, Neck Tattoos, Great Appeals, Planned Giving & More

Resource tools

Need some tips on how to do your job better? Or maybe just a reminder on some key skills, the insight on the latest research, and the latest, coolest ideas from the best minds in the fundraising profession?

Each week, AFP gathers the top blog posts, videos, articles and other resources to help you keep on top of latest trends and reach your fundraising goals. Here’s this week’s Top Ten:

1. Why I Hate the Donor Pyramid (The Agitator): It’s time to call the donor pyramid what it is: yet another three-dimensional-triangle lie for desperate presenters to shove into PowerPoint slides to give the illusion of intelligence? Nick Ellinger thinks so.

2. Just Imagine If…The Essential Role of Imagination in Fundraising (bloomerang): Imagination is a skill, the ability to perceive an opportunity for real change. And it’s likely what your organization needs (a lot!), even if you don’t realize it yet and your fundraising is doing well.

3. Neck Tattoos and Our Fundraising Future (artful fund raiser):  How do you evaluate fundraising candidates? Do we use something like, “Who would you like to have a beer with?” We can do better. We NEED to do better.

4. How to Write a Great Fundraising Appeal (Hands on Fundraising): A nice overview, with some good ideas and reminders no matter your experience level.

5. Five Myths Busted on Why Charitable Giving With Wills and Trusts Is Difficult (bloomerang): Planned giving has one of the highest ROIs of any fundraising activity, yet such giving is rarely a key mission funding practice among the average American nonprofit. Time to bust a few myths.

6. How to Turn Fundraising Event Attendees into Supportive Donors (Catholic Fundraiser): There are steps you can take to stimulate interest before, during, and after the event as a way of developing a relationship with donors who may be interested in supporting your charity in a more transformative way.

7. Research: Nudge Theory and Charitable Giving (Hilborn): Nudge theory is a good application of a behavioral science approach to encourage giving. We know that one of the areas people want to change is giving more. By using an evidence-based approach to decision making, you can shape actions in a positive way.

8. Donor-Centered Storytelling Boosts Fundraising. Period. (clairification): In a recent survey, 8% of donors failed to renew their giving specifically because they weren’t sure what their gifts accomplished. That shouldn’t happen. Ever. Here’s how to prevent it.

9. Omaha Nonprofits Shift Tactics to Attract Young Givers ( In 2000, roughly 66 percent of people donated to charity, a number that had dropped to about 55 percent by 2014. Who will be tomorrow’s donors?

10. What to Do When Donors Complain (moceanic): A complaint can create anxiety that damages an organization. Or, if you face it with the courage of your convictions and a good attitude, it can be a magic moment that creates new bonds with the donor. Just remember to keep your eyes on the big picture: It’s all about the good work your organization does.