Donor Retention Rules!Donor retention is an absolute priority (again) for 2014. Yet the path to donor retention success remains elusive for so many organizations. How about yours?

Please join me in thanking Frank Barry and the Blackbaud team for sharing donor retention guidance from some of the smartest fundraising experts out there. I’m thrilled to be included!

Here’s my #1 donor retention recommendation—R-E-S-P-E-C-T your way to strong and long-lasting donor relationships:


Nancy Schwartz on January 9, 2014 in Fundraising: Innovations & Research | 3 comments
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10 Steps to Becoming a Better Writer

Select that one thing (among the many things) that will make a significant difference and that you want to do better. Then start doing it right now on a regular basis.

For most of us (including me), it’s a no-brainer. That one thing has to be be writing. Stronger writing is the one and only path to nonprofit content that motivates people to listen and act. It’s the skill set behind every effective nonprofit campaign ever crafted and one you can always take to the next level.

I dare you to learn to write better.


Nancy Schwartz on December 12, 2013 in Copywriting | 3 comments
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Friends and colleagues, today is Giving Tuesday—the national day of giving—and I’m raising money for an organization dear to my heart: NTEN (the Nonprofit Technology Network). Please join me in supporting my NTEN challenge.

NTEN is the place so many of us nonprofit communicators find community, plus a wealth of resources and support unavailable anywhere else.

Donate now to join me in building a stronger network of nonprofit professionals like us; folks who do more with less by leveraging technology tools to increase their impact and move their cause forward.

Your donation of any size—$10, $25  or more—will be used and appreciated. Please donate now. Thank you for helping NTEN, and helping me meet my ambitious goal of $1,000!

Here’s the back story:


Nancy Schwartz on December 3, 2013 in Professional Development | 0 comments
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Nonprofit Message Tip

I was thrilled to see this Facebook post this from the Elizabeth Coalition to House the Homeless (ECHH), one of our favorite clients.

We’ve been working with the ECHH team on year-end fundraising campaigns for a few years now. And among the many things I’ve learned is just how many of the individuals and families they serve work full-time (or more) but still can’t make ends meet—68%!


Nancy Schwartz on November 26, 2013 in Branding and Messages | 1 comment
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As I read accounts of Typhoon Haiyan survivors struggling for basic needs, I’m struck by the number of lives that have been taken and touched by this disaster in the Philippines.

That’s a significant communications challenge for the nonprofit organizations that work delivering aid: How to mobilize giving while communicating respectfully about their efforts and impact on the ground? How to keep giving going even as the Typhoon, and the plight of survivors, fades from top of mind?

And what about the many other organizations not directly providing relief efforts but soliciting donations to pass on to relief organizations? Or the majority of nonprofits, like most of the your organizations, that have to carry on with communications and fundraising initiatives despite the global focus on recovery in the Philippines—nonprofits counting on the gifts they hope to generate via their year-end campaigns?

For every organization, the answer lies in the way (if any) your organization is involved in the relief effort. Here’s my recommendation:


Nancy Schwartz on November 14, 2013 in Crisis Communications | 4 comments
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Who-Cares Right-Now Marketing

I’ve seen so many fantastic examples from nonprofits linking what’s top of mind this week (Halloween, for many, if not for all) with their campaigns and orgs. Thanks to Kerri Karvetski for showcasing several strong nonprofit models here.

But many orgs are moving forward with “just do it” Halloween-linked marketing, rather than relevant marketing that deepens understanding of the organization and/or motivates action. And that becomes who-cares, right-now marketing. Here’s what I mean.


Nancy Schwartz on October 31, 2013 in Right-Things Right-Now Marketing | 1 comment
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Together, Forever, in NJ

Me and you, together in the same place? I’d love that.

Let’s lunch and learn together! Please join me next Tuesday, October 8, in nearby Edison NJ, to build your skills on:

Relevance Rules:
Right-Things Right-Now Fundraising for Nonprofit Leaders  

Register by tomorrow (Fri, Oct 4) to get the early-bird rate—just $40 to learn with me!


Nancy Schwartz on October 3, 2013 in Fundraising: Innovations & Research | 0 comments
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Diana Nyad’s epic 110-mile uncaged swim (video here) from Cuba to Key West was a tremendous achievement. But even more remarkable than setting this record was 64-year-old Nyad’s perseverance in reaching her goal (this was her fifth attempt in 35 years).

There’s so much nonprofit communicators like us can learn from her. Here are 6 vital lessons we can take from her experience:


Nancy Schwartz on September 4, 2013 in Strategy | 0 comments
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Blackbaud just released a must-read report—findings from its Next Generation of American Giving study on charitable giving trends and engagement behaviors and attitudes across Matures (68+), Boomers (49-67), Gen X (33-48) and Gen Y (18-32). I recommend you read the entire report and share out your top-ten findings and implications for your org with colleagues and your leadership. It’s too important to miss!

But there are two critical findings I want to share with you a.s.a.p.:


Nancy Schwartz on August 15, 2013 in Fundraising: Innovations & Research | 5 comments
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NTEN Annual Conference #14NTC

The Nonprofit Technology Network has a refreshingly open method of designing the program for its 2014 annual conference, and the votes of folks like you are a key part of it.

I’ve partnered with some fantastic experts on these two sessions and hope you’ll to help bring them to life by voting for them today. Voting closes Wednesday, July 31 so vote now please!

Marketing & Fundraising Meet & Greet


Nancy Schwartz on July 18, 2013 in Professional Development | 0 comments
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