Grow Your Ministry With These Blogs

If you want to improve performance of your ministry in fundraising, increase ministry growth toward a big vision or lead your organization with confidence, these articles can accelerate your journey.  Advocace consultants, researchers and editors post counsel, advice and direction to help Christian ministries grow.  See for yourself by clicking on these articles—a part of Advocace's commitment to pro bono encouragement and education of Christian ministry leaders.


 

How to Improve Fundraising for A Nonprofit Organization – Part 2: The Game Plan

Peter Drucker is famous for saying: “Management is doing things right; leadership is doing the right things,” in his book - The Essential Drucker. While I agree with that, I also believe that success in fundraising is doing the right things, the right way, consistently. There really are best practices, that when applied, will result in improved financial outcomes for your organization. In this blog I’m going to pick out just a few that we should employ as a part of our game plan. OK, you have all the right players in place, based on your organization’s size and budget - see previous blog: How... Read more...

One Way You Can Avoid the Summer Slump

The hot long days of summer are here. Have your donations taken a nose-dive into a steamy bed of desert sand? There is one “doable” course of action which can help prevent your non-profit from taking a swan-dive into the summer slump season. You won’t be able to “fix” your empty treasure chest instantly. But remember, it’s the long, slow way of the turtle that eventually wins the race. I’m talking about setting up a monthly giving program. It’s not flashy. It’s not instant. But it works!  Encouraging your donors to give monthly makes a lot of sense. It helps you set budgets. It gives you consistent... Read more...

5 Reasons Donors Don't Want to Meet with You

Recently one of my clients was at a meeting with a donor. And the donor told the Executive Director, “You must be a busy person, you don’t need to visit me. I trust you.” The leader of this wonderful organization told me he was considering taking her off his list since she trusts them and does not want a visit. “Absolutely not!” I exclaimed. There is more to this type of response than you may think.  Here are five reasons major donors give you similar “objections” because they don't want to meet with you. (Download your Overcome 8 Major Donor Objections to Meeting ebook >>)  5 Reasons Donors... Read more...

3 Effective Ways to Grow Ministry Income This Summer

Nonprofit fundraisers often agree with country artist Alan Jackson, and legendary rockers The Who, The Beach Boys, and Blue Cheer. They all wail: "There ain’t no cure for the summertime blues!" But there’s no cure needed—just a good summertime plan. Grow Your Ministry's Income This Summer Here are three effective ways to grow your ministry income this summer: Allow Time for Everything to Take Twice As Long "I'm gonna raise a fuss, I'm gonna raise a holler About a workin' all summer just to try to earn a dollar" Eddie Cochran and Jerry Capehart wrote Summertime Blues... Read more...

Great Leadership Starts with Being a Great Follower

So much has been written about leadership. But how much do we hear about being a great follower? How can you be a great leader if you never learned to be a great follower? Let's begin by asking ourselves some important questions and see how Jesus answers these questions by being a follower first. Great Leaders Focus on Others How do we stay focused on our goals, our reason for existence, our plans, and not become focused on ourselves? Jesus’ life clearly models this and the success that Jesus had as a leader and helps us to understand how we can lead this way. Wasn't Jesus deeply committed... Read more...

How to Engage Your Donors This Summer

Summer slump. This is the phrase most of us use to describe the low season of giving in the summer months. There are obvious reasons, yet, let’s look at this issue together to really try to understand what is happening with our donors...and within our organization. Here are a few reasons why your donor giving might drop in the summer: Donors think about some organizations seasonally. It’s true. If I am an after-school program, donors think of me during the school year. If I am a rescue mission, donors love to give to me at Thanksgiving and Christmas. Think of your organization. Do... Read more...

$30 per month? But I want to give $1,000!

Monthly Donors make a big impact for radio stations, but there are other donors who want to make a big impact, too. We’re just not communicating to our donors in a language they understand. Monthly Donors Are Really Different Monthly Donors are remarkably different from the rest of your donors. Monthly Donors often comprise 25% (or more) of the donor file—which means that other donors make up 75% of the file. Advocace’s recent custom donor research leads us to believe that Monthly Donors are typically: More disciplined More analytical More principled More likely to volunteer... Read more...

How to Identify and Recruit Great Fundraisers

On a flight to Portland recently I happened upon an article in BusinessWeek magazine about Portland resident Dan McLaughlin. McLaughlin, having never picked up a golf club somehow talked Nike into sponsoring him as a professional golfer. He decided to become a golf pro after reading Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers, which posits that it takes 10,000 hours of deliberate practice to become a master at any skill. Recently he passed his 2,000th hour of practice, and he’s now shooting in the mid-90s. Not quite PGA material, but he remains convinced that if he sticks to the “Dan Plan” he will get his... Read more...

Don't Let the Pressure of Fundraising Cripple You

Let’s say you’re a new Development Director. The Executive Director of the Board says you must raise $150,000 in your first year. That amount will cover the cost of bringing you on and will give the ministry a good return on investment. “Wow!” you might think. "It's a little intimidating, but also exciting." You imagine meeting that goal and all the good it would do for your place on the team and for the organization’s mission. You are focused and ready to get started. In the beginning you make a lot of calls, but don’t get many answers. In fact, in the first few days alone you have called fifteen... Read more...

Want to know why storytelling motivates donors to action?

Good storytelling motivates people to action. Facts, figures, graphs and charts showing the good you do may seem logical, but just doesn’t work. Why Storytelling Motivates People to Action Dr. Paul Zak of Claremont Graduate University studies how people are moved to action through storytelling. His research shows oxytocin (a chemical released by our brain), motivates us to cooperate with other people. It also enhances our sense of empathy, so we can experience other people’s emotions. Dr. Zak found that character-driven stories cause oxytocin to be released into the bloodstream. How Storytelling... Read more...