Robert Weiner

Migrating recurring donors to a new system

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Best Practices Fundraising Online FundraisingCredit card image from Ed Ivanushkin. A client is migrating to new Association Management Software, which will entail changing their credit card processor.

New book: “Advancement Services: Enhancing Fundraising Success”

Robert Weiner

The title of this edition is " Advancement Services: Enhancing Fundraising Success." CASE has just published the third edition of its guide to Advancement Services.

Trending Sources

Blackbaud kills off Common Ground

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology SoftwareYesterday the news was that Blackbaud had laid off 50 employees it acquired when it bought Convio in May. In what was said to be an unrelated development, they also announced the departure of Gene Austin, the former CEO of Convio.

Important changes for GiftWorks users

Robert Weiner

Sync event information: registrants, event donations, fundraisers, and team information seamlessly flow into CRM. Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology Software FrontStream, the current owner of GiftWorks, sent me the following notice this week: Hey there Robert, As in the past, we are preparing to upgrade FrontStream CRM (previously GiftWorks 2013) users to the newest version of CRM. This change is in-line with our transition to a subscription-based service.

Thoughts on the Blackbaud – Convio deal

Robert Weiner

Provides robust, flexible support for all forms of fundraising, membership, marketing, and communications. During the NTEN call we discussed Tessitura , the performing arts fundraising and ticketing system as an example of a successful effort. Advancement Services Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology NTENLots of people have already weighed in on Blackbaud’s purchase of Convio (two of my favorites: [link] and [link] ). Here my perspective.

Year-end donation processing

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Fundraising Online FundraisingAs the calendar year draws to an end, charities (and ideally, donors) are focused on year-end donations and tax deductions. Here are a few scenarios for U.S. charities to keep in mind. Note: I am not a lawyer. When in doubt, contact an attorney who specializes in nonprofit law or contact the IRS for a ruling. ). Let's say the following donations will be processed by different nonprofits in the United States on Jan.

Controlling data entry

Robert Weiner

No one is going to fire an effective fundraiser because she’s bad at data entry (although they might get her an assistant who will handle the entry). A member of the PRSPCT-L listserve (for prospect researchers) asked "What do other institutions do to regulate or “police” data entry work, specifically when you have multiple users with authority to make updates?". It's a tough problem. Here are a few approaches (other than locking down data entry): Policies.

Predictions for Nonprofit Fundraising Technology in 2012

Robert Weiner

NTEN published my somewhat snarky predictions for nonprofits' use of fundraising technologies in 2012. Advancement Services Fundraising IT Management Mobile Communications Nonprofit Management Nonprofit Technology NTEN Online Fundraising Social Media Web Web 2.0My overall predictions are that most things will be pretty much the same as last year (and 2010 and 2009, etc.): many nonprofits will struggle with out-of-date systems.

Thinking about a donor database selection workshop

Robert Weiner

The system needs to be intuitive for fundraisers, but streamlined for fast data entry. I'm planning a new workshop on selecting donor databases, focusing on the question, "Why is this so friggin' complicated?" Some initial thoughts: The maxim "Fast, cheap, or good -- pick two" is true.

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. I expect that it will take at least several months, and probably several years, before the dust settles and we know what's left behind.

Idealware’s revised Consumers Guide to Low-Cost Donor Management Systems

Robert Weiner

Databases Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit Technology SoftwareIdealware just released the latest version of their Consumers Guide to Low-Cost Donor Management Systems. It will give you an overview of 32 systems and in-depth reviews of their top 11 “best value” choices. Several systems were included for the first time: @EASE, Bloomerang, Exceed Beyond, Salsa CRM, The Raiser’s Edge NXT, and NPOconnect (formerly known as Orange Leap). You can download it here.

Discussion of Donor Data Retention

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Best Practices Donor Databases Fundraising Prospect Research A few months ago I wrote a post on the topic of whether nonprofits should delete old donor records. The same topic came up recently on the APRA''s listserve, PRSPCT-L. The original question: My organization is working on a data retention policy and wondering if others have insights to share. There seems to be a feeling we should remove any records that have not had an action in 7 years.

Should You Delete Donor Records?

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Best Practices Databases Donor Databases Fundraising 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. After talking with some clients, it seems opinions vary wildly regarding this subject.

2012 Heroes With A Heart Awards

Robert Weiner

FundraisingHeroes With A Heart Grant. The CTK Foundation’s "Heroes with a Heart" Grant Award wants YOU to nominate a “Hero with a Heart,” and give them a chance to win $5,000 as thanks for the hard work that they do.

SF Fundraising Day 2010

Robert Weiner

San Francisco's Fundraising Day will be happening June 16 at the downtown Marriott. We've programmed sessions on online fundraising with Madeline Stanionis, social media with Jeff Patrick, database selection with Eric Leland, and an open discussion session with me and Michael on whatever tech topics the attendees bring. Donor Databases Email Marketing Fundraising Nonprofit Technology Online Fundraising Social Media Web 2.0

Prizes for Paperless Fundraising

Robert Weiner

Have you successfully moved from paper-based direct mail fundraising to digital tools (email, websites, video, social media, widgets, and/or mobile)? The Paperless Choice Challenge is rewarding successful, creative, replicable campaigns that use electronic fundraising tools by giving away eight prizes totalling over $20,000. Want to gloat about your successes and possibly make some (more) money as well?

Idealware’s Field Guide to Nonprofit Software: Fundraising, Communications and Outreach

Robert Weiner

Idealware recently released its Fundraising, Communications and Outreach. Unlike their earlier guides (to inexpensive donor databases, content management systems, online donation tools, etc.)

Fundraising Survival Guide

Robert Weiner

Network for Good recently published The 2008 Online Fundraising Survival Guide: 12 Winning Strategies to Survive & Thrive in a Down Economy. This 45-page guide includes sections on avoiding “the four most common fundraising mistakes,&# answering the four questions required to get a donation ( Why Me? Tags: Online Fundraising Email Marketing Fundraising Web

Web 2

Lame spam of the day: Raw spam merge text

Robert Weiner

Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting ? Some newbie spammer posted a message on my site that shows the contents of their spam merge database. It goes on and on, but you''ll get the idea pretty quickly. I found it fascinating. I recognize so many snippets that have appeared in my spam folder over the years. { {I have|I’ve} been {surfing|browsing} online more than {three|3|2|4} hours today, yet I never found any interesting article like yours. {It’s|It

Analysis of the CASE Online Fundraising Survey

Robert Weiner

Steve MacLaughlin at Blackbaud has written an analysis of the CASE Online Fundraising Survey. Tags: Fundraising Online Fundraising No surprise -- he focuses on the high number of responses that said they "don't know" or "don't measure" and cites the maxim "If you can't measure it, then you can't manage it." " His analysis is at [link].

Blackbaud kills Common Ground: So What?

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Databases Donor Databases Fundraising IT Management Nonprofit Technology SoftwareAccording to the Foundation Center’s analysis of data from the National Center for Charitable Statistics, there are approximately 1.5 million nonprofits in the U.S. According to the Q&A that Idealware conducted with Blackbaud , approximately 400 nonprofits are using Common Ground. That’s about.026 percent of U.S. nonprofits.

ROI for a donor database

Robert Weiner

It does Direct Marketing but not Major Gift fundraising (or it does Major Gift fundraising but not Direct Marketing); we need support in both areas. There are key components of advancement support missing in the current software (one of the two areas above, or Events management, or Volunteer management, or on-line fundraising, or Campaign Reporting, or…). And if fundraisers hate the current system, ROI may not matter.

Schools using social media but not for fundraising

Robert Weiner

Very few speakers or attendees reported using these tools for fundraising, though. It's not an explicit fundraising appeal, but they might start using fundraising badges for class campaigns in the future. Tags: Fundraising Online Fundraising Social Media I spent the last 3 days at the CASE District VII conference, for schools in AZ, CA, Guam, HI, NV, and UT.

Tales of faux donors scamming charities

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Fraud Fundraising Prospect Research ScamThe following is a compilation of online discussions of faux donors trying to scam colleges, schools, and nonprofits. In most cases it’s not clear what the scammers are trying to achieve. Maybe they’re just practical jokes. These tales were provided by Barbara Esteve at Cedar Crest College, Roylene Gallas at the Little City Foundation, Don Martin at St.

Analysis of Convio’s Online Fundraising Study

Robert Weiner

Care2’s Allyson Kapin just published an analysis of Convio’s online fundraising study (which I mentioned earlier this week ). Tags: Online Fundraising Fundraising She interviewed me, so of course I think the article is good. But in particular, check out the advice from online marketing consultant Katy O’Neal about how nonprofits should focus their marketing and engagement efforts. The analysis is posted at [link].

Phishing Scam: Habitat for Humanity fundraising

Robert Weiner

It plays Habitat's name, Haiti relief, and pure greed -- it claims you can earn big tax-free commissions as a fundraiser. Fundraising (at least in the U.S.) doesn't work this way -- commissions violate the Association of Fundraising Professionals' code of ethics. I received the following phishing email today. It's a variation on the "your email inbox is too large" scam I posted in June.

Trends Affecting Fundraising in 2009

Robert Weiner

The Chronicle of Philanthropy is starting the year off with a list of trends they believe will affect fundraising in 2009. Tags: Fundraising The trends they cite include lower estate taxes, low investment returns, the possibility of inflation, no minimum required withdrawal from individual retirement accounts, the impact of medical costs, and a push to lower fund-raising costs. You can read the full article at philanthropy.com/news/prospecting/index.php?id=6835. id=6835.

Using Humiliation to Fundraise

Robert Weiner

Twice in the past week I’ve come across online fundraising campaigns in which the fundraiser promises to do something embarrassing when the goal is met. Trend or coincidence? Last week, Holly Ross, NTEN’s Executive Director, posted a video appeal for her attempt to raise $10,000 for scholarships to the upcoming Nonprofit Technology Conference.

Fundraising in a Bad Economy

Robert Weiner

The Association of Fundraising Professionals has posted A Survival Kit for Fundraising in a Bad Economy , which includes links to dozens of articles.

What’s a good donor database?

Robert Weiner

Advancement Services Donor Databases Fundraising Nonprofit TechnologyI'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). There have been 120 responses so far, and they've been all over the map, from expensive, high-end systems to free ones, from established players to new ones.

Fundraising Via Social Media: Pros and Cons

Robert Weiner

Beth titled her post Are Fundraising Groundswells A Massive Opportunity or Distraction for Nonprofit Organizations? Hildy Gottlieb takes the con side in her post Avoiding the Siren’s Song of Social Media Fundraising , arguing that these efforts are counterproductive: These efforts tell donors, “You will have the satisfaction of knowing you helped.” But I think that smart nonprofits will add social media as one more tool for engagement and fundraising.

Taking Advantage of a Crisis

Robert Weiner

Target Analytics' Index of National Fundraising Performance for the first quarter of 2009 had nothing but bad news. Grizzard says that "when others scale back on their fundraising efforts, it presents an opportunity to cut through the clutter for those that stay the course."

The Current Economy and Major Gifts Fundraising

Robert Weiner

I’ve previously posted resources for nonprofits coping with the economic downturn ( Coping with a Troubled Economy , Fundraising Survival Guide , Economic Effects on Philanthropy ). For many groups with a (disproportionately) high reliance on foundations, (this) will mean they will have to significantly increase their individual fundraising results to replace some foundation support. Tags: Fundraising

Convio’s 2009 Online Fundraising Benchmark Report

Robert Weiner

Convio has released a new online fundraising benchmark report that is based on data from 600 of Convio’s nonprofit clients from January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2008. Compared to 2007, results for online fundraising were up 14 percent, email file growth was up 28 percent, and Web site traffic was up 20 percent.

Lame spams of the day: Robospam promoting Liberty Reserve investments

Robert Weiner

Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » Lame spam as blog comments. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » More lame spam as blog comments. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » More lame spam as blog comments. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » More lame spam as blog comments.

Social Media for Revenue or Volunteers? Maybe Not

Robert Weiner

The results of two new surveys paint a bleak picture of the effectiveness of social media for fundraising and volunteer recruitment. It concludes that: Social technologies are not delivering much in terms of fundraising or attracting volunteers.

More lame spam as blog comments

Robert Weiner

Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » Lame spam as blog comments. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » Lame spam as blog comments I have understand your stuff previous to and you are just too wonderful. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » Lame spam as blog comments informations. Weiner: Nonprofit Fundraising Technology Consulting » Lame spam as blog comments.

NY Times says text donations system is flawed

Robert Weiner

Tags: Fundraising Mobile Communications Online Fundraising

Do New Online Donors Give Again?

Robert Weiner

One-time Internet givers to the 12 organizations who reported their fundraising data in January gave a median of $27 more than those who made single gifts by mail.