How to Handle Complaints via Email

Anger. Disappointment. Rejection. These, for reasons I probably don’t have to explain, are emotions we’re not typically fond of handling when we see them in our inbox. But, no matter where you work, you’ll have to deal with handling complaints via email from time to time.   At nonprofits, these dreaded emails have their own special flavors and circumstances. When you…

Why feelings matter in fundraising

Last week, I received a fundraising appeal from a local nonprofit that I’d never heard of. I skimmed through the letter. It was an organization that ran arts and performance programs for youth in underserved communities. It sounded nice. I pulled out the next piece – it was a card with a drawing of a flower on the…

Don’t let data rain on your fundraising message

I was on a fact-finding campaign this year. I wanted to put facts and data on our website, in our appeals, in our emails. Who can resist numbers? Using numbers in fundraising appeals to demonstrate need is a wildly common tactic. The logic behind using statistics seems sound: we’ll show people the severity of the situation, and they’ll be motivated to…

Overcoming our Fear of Fundraising – Intro

“How do you get used to asking people for money all the time?” This question came up last weekend while I was sitting on an alumni panel for prospective nonprofit workers. It’s a question I hear often. Many young and emerging nonprofit professionals, including myself, have eschewed development work due to a fear of asking for money.…