Robert Weiner

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New book: “Advancement Services: Enhancing Fundraising Success”

Robert Weiner

CASE has just published the third edition of its guide to Advancement Services. I'm honored to have written two chapters.

Blackbaud kills off Common Ground

Robert Weiner

Today the news is that Blackbaud is killing off Common Ground , one of the two donor management products (aka CRMs or Constituent Relationship Management systems) that they acquired from Convio. Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology SoftwareAny BB staff or CG consultants care to chime in?).

Preventing Fraud on our Online Giving Pages

Robert Weiner

The credit card scam/fraud attempt that many nonprofits have experiences starts with a very large online gift from an unknown donor. and Hotmail are all common.). · The addresses of the “donors” are all in sequence, or all within the same zip code. Vered Siegel , Manager of Development Services. Children’s Home + Aid. The Scams.

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Training on your new database

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases IT Management Nonprofit Management Nonprofit TechnologyA question was posted to a listserve for nonprofit techies looking for tips on training staff on a new database. discussed training at a high level on page 13 of this chapter from CASE's Handbook of Institutional Advancement. It's an art.

Important changes for GiftWorks users

Robert Weiner

Push-to-sync online donations: sync donors and donations with CRM in a single click. Process recurring donations based on donors'' schedule of giving. Maintain cleaner data: set required fields for donors and donation records. Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology Software And more!!

Creative credit card donation scam

Robert Weiner

The next day, we receive an email from the donor with the following info: the $9,000 gift amount was a mistake, it should have been $900. The gift was made in memory of the donor’s late mother (never named) who had a wonderful experience at our college. Fortunately, they didn't fall for it. Comments.

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Consumers Guide to Low Cost Donor Management Systems

Robert Weiner

Our friends at Idealware and NTEN have released their Consumers Guide to Low Cost Donor Management Systems. The guide presents detailed comparisons of 33 donor databases that cost less than $4,250 in the first year. Full disclosure — I contributed to the report and am one of the consultants listed.). read more.

Reigning in shadow databases

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Best Practices Databases Donor Databases The following story, posted with permission, was sent to the FUNDSVCS list in response to a question about how to reign in schools and departments at a university that keep their own shadow databases of contacts. We do NCOA, wealth and deceased screenings. We get Google alerts.

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Thinking about a donor database selection workshop

Robert Weiner

I'm planning a new workshop on selecting donor databases, focusing on the question, "Why is this so friggin' complicated?"

Robert in the news(paper)

Robert Weiner

The NonProfit Times ran the story The Evolution of Donor Management And Its Fundraising Future , which deals with how technology is transforming the way nonprofits interact with donors, particularly online. Advancement Services Donor Databases Fundraising Online Fundraising Software

Controlling data entry

Robert Weiner

Donors will give online and misspell their own names, or leave the caps lock on. Advancement Services Databases Donor DatabasesIt's a tough problem. Here are a few approaches (other than locking down data entry): Policies. You need clear data entry standards. Security. You need to control who can make changes and what they can change.

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Year-end donation processing

Robert Weiner

As the calendar year draws to an end, charities (and ideally, donors) are focused on year-end donations and tax deductions. So if the charity did not process the charge until January 2012, the donor would be treated as making the gift in 2012 rather than 2011, as she intended. Here are a few scenarios for U.S. Note: I am not a lawyer.

Want your product covered in Idealware’s Donor Management report?

Robert Weiner

Idealware is updating its 2009 report on low-cost donor databases. Donor Databases SoftwareThe survey deadline is Feb. 4, 2011, so don't delay.

More nonprofit software mergers and acquisitions

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Alumni Relations Databases Donor Databases Software AlumniLast year the big news in my industry was Blackbaud's acquisition of Convio and the merger/acquisition of Datatel and Sungard Higher Education (now called Ellucian). The press release for the iModules deal says Harris Connect “will be supported.

Blackbaud’s acquisition of Convio is a done deal

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases Email Marketing Fundraising Nonprofit Technology Online Fundraising SoftwareBlackbaud completed its purchase of Convio. The next adventure starts today, as we wait to see what the future holds for their various systems.

Blackbaud – Convio merger expected to close this week

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Cloud Computing Databases Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology Online Fundraising SoftwareThe Department of Justice signed off on Blackbaud's acquisition of Convio last week, and it looks like the deal will close this week. This is just the beginning of the story. We'll see. How's your crystal ball?

Discussion of Donor Data Retention

Robert Weiner

A few months ago I wrote a post on the topic of whether nonprofits should delete old donor records. Advancement Services Best Practices Donor Databases Fundraising Prospect Research The same topic came up recently on the APRA''s listserve, PRSPCT-L. Does this make sense to others? Storage needs can be assessed internally. Not giving?

Should You Delete Donor Records?

Robert Weiner

I was recently contacted by the vendor behind a new cloud-based donor management system with this question: We have noticed that our clients have become much more conscious about archiving/deleting old donor/prospect records because our pricing model is based on the number of records. But don’t delete them. What do you think?

ROI for a donor database

Robert Weiner

So how do we justify that system to management (and perhaps our donors)? Stewarding current donors. Identifying future donors. If any of you have come up a generally applicable formula for calculating the return on investment from a donor database I’d love to see it! Probably an issue that we should all be looking at.

What’s a good donor database?

Robert Weiner

I've been enjoying the discussion in the Chronicle of Philanthropy's LinkedIn group in response to the question, " What's a good, affordable donor database program for a small non profit? " (you'll probably need to join the group to read the responses). Advancement Services Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology

Tales of faux donors scamming charities

Robert Weiner

The following is a compilation of online discussions of faux donors trying to scam colleges, schools, and nonprofits. The donor promised his patent would completely fund the university, wipe out the national debt, and make America the happiest place on Earth. BTW beware potential donors who only correspond using cap lock.

Chosing a donor database

Robert Weiner

I get a lot of emails like the following from small nonprofits: We desperately need to get a new donor database and most of them are totally unaffordable!! Or you might have some reports that are mandatory, like a lapsed donor report. Tags: Advancement Services Donor Databases Nonprofit Technology Software etc.).

Maybe It’s Not Your Database, It’s You

Robert Weiner

Databases Donor Databases IT Management Nonprofit TechnologyI'm working on an article with the title, "Maybe It's Not Your Database, It's You."

More Defunct Donor Databases

Robert Weiner

The good folks at Aspiration have been working to put my list of donor databases into a wiki. Along the way the identified some that seem to have disappeared and weren't on my earlier list of defunct donor databases. Tags: Donor Databases Here are the new entries: Association Management System from Micro Solutions.

Do New Online Donors Give Again?

Robert Weiner

A new study released by Blackbaud’s Target Analytics division suggests that first-time online donors do not become recurring donors.

Donor Tracking vs. Business Intelligence

Robert Weiner

The Nonprofit Times recently published an article called Is It Donor Management Software Or Business Intelligence. It discusses what Laura Quinn calls the "movement from merely tracking data to an emphasis on using it strategically to make business decisions." This vision of donor management software is nothing new.

Defunct Donor Databases

Robert Weiner

The flip side to my list of donor databases would be a list of systems that no longer exist. Donor Access. Donor Access. Tags: Donor Databases Fundraising Advancement Services This probably isn’t as useful a list, but it’s short so here goes: SYSTEM. VENDOR. Alchemy. Campagne Associates. Campaign Manager.

Do You Need a New Donor Management System?

Robert Weiner

How do you know if you should switch, or stick with the donor management system that you have? TechSoup

Converting Fresh Leads into Donors

Robert Weiner

CARE2 is holding a webinar on strategies for successfully welcoming, cultivating, and converting new leads into donors. Converting Fresh Leads into Donors. Holly Ross of NTEN will moderate a panel with Heidi Hess of Children's Defense Fund and Greg Zelder of the California State Parks Foundation. What: While They're Hot! Eastern.

Editable List of Donor Databases

Robert Weiner

Over the past few years I've been compiling what turned out to be a huge list of donor databases. The entries came from a variety of other lists and from customer satisfaction surveys done by Campbell Research, NTEN, and Idealware. Once I posted the list I started getting requests to add links to vendor websites, tags, and comments.

Editable List of Donor Databases

Robert Weiner

The good folks at Asipration have taken my list of donor databases and put it into the Social Source Commons wiki. What's more, they added descriptions, logos, and links to the vendors' sites. Very cool! You can go directly to the list at [link] or preview it below

How Many Donor Databases Are There?

Robert Weiner

I thought it might be useful to compile a list of all of the commercial donor databases I’m aware of. This list came from my head, my bookmarks, and lists compiled by NTEN and Idealware for their donor management software surveys (and I’m not certain all of these are actually donor databases). Donor Quest.

Blackbaud kills Common Ground: So What?

Robert Weiner

One of the discussions during NTEN’s community call about Blackbaud’s purchase of Convio was whether the nonprofit community should band together and build its own donor management system rather than being dependent on for-profit vendors. Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases Fundraising IT Management Nonprofit Technology Software

Back Away From That Spreadsheet: Why Excel Isn’t a Donor Database

Robert Weiner

Idealware published a new article of mine today, on a subject that comes up whenever I teach workshops for small nonprofits: "Why not use Excel as my donor database?" The article is at [link]. Tags: Donor Databases

Inside the Mind of a Top Donor

Robert Weiner

Lokey, who has appeared on The Chronicle’s list of America’s top donors every year since 2000. How could a small institution with big aspirations engage donors with significant financial capability? What do you see as the ED’s role in working with major donors? Mr. Lokey responded to questions such as.

New article: Take Control of your Organization’s Data

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases IT Management Nonprofit Management Nonprofit TechnologyNTEN just published a short piece of mine on data management in their Change magazine. It's in their DIY series -- short tips for implementing something for your organization without extensive tech know-how or extra budget.

Do You Need New Donor Management Software?

Robert Weiner

Idealware just published an article by Keith Heller called Do You Need New Donor Management Software?

Back Away from that Spreadsheet: Why Excel Isn’t a Donor Database

Robert Weiner

Idealware just published a new article of mine, on a subject that comes up whenever I teach workshops for small nonprofits: "Why not use Excel as my donor database?".

Results from Campbell Rinker Donor & Member Database Survey

Robert Weiner

Marketing research firm Campbell Rinker has published the results of its latest survey of donor and member management software. Of the 841 respondents, 27% would NOT recommend their current systems to a comparable organization, 26% were unsure, and 47% would give a positive recommendation.

Roundup of 2009 Online Giving Stats

Robert Weiner

Donors were still giving, but in smaller amounts. I t's the season for a slew of reports analyzing last year's online giving results. read more.