Wed, May 27 2015

A Few of My Favorite Tools

Nancy Schwartz's avatar

Nonprofit Marketing Expert

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Filed under:   Fun stuff • Fundraising essentials •

Like many of your organizations, my business is basically a tiny shop. There’s never enough time and everything to do. Plus, as a working mom (and daughter of a 92-year-old), I’m multitasking day and night and always have too much on my plate. I think you see what I mean.

We all need help to keep things organized, timely, and moving forward. Here are some of the greatest helpers I know.

Right-now top tool: Google Developers Mobile-Friendly Test (free)

Fess up! When you’re looking for that specific resource or quote, you Google it. Everybody does it.

But Google just changed its search algorithm to emphasize the value of mobile friendliness. And that might mean trouble for folks trying to find your organization’s website.

If your organization’s website is mobile friendly, and you take the other steps necessary to improve your placement in Google’s search results (great guidance here), your site will turn up somewhere in those listings.

However, if your site is not mobile friendly, you’ll want to turn things around pronto.

Use Google’s free tool to find out. Simply plug in your website address, and Google will tell you the good (or bad) news. Test it, then create a doable, step-by-step plan based on what turns up in your results.

By the way, this is a tool to use both right now and periodically.

Keeps stuff keeping on: Asana (mobile app; free for up to 15 users)

A blend of to-do list and project manager, Web-based Asana saves me time and again. We all have too much going on to do it all, and that’s not even counting the unexpected to-dos that constantly crop up in the course of every single workday.

Asana helps you juggle it all—individually and with our teams—and be assured that nothing is falling through the cracks. Here’s what I suggest:

A smart email assistant: Boomerang (available for Gmail or Outlook users only; free and paid versions)

Shhh, don’t tell my husband: I’m in love with Boomerang. It makes my life easier and ups the probability with connecting. Here’s how:

  • It lets me work when I need to work. Believe me, that can be midday Saturday or Thursday at midnight.

  • It delivers my emails to people when they’re most likely to read it and act. You write an email at your convenience and schedule it to be sent automatically at the right time.

  • It reminds me to follow up on specific messages I’ve sent, so nothing falls through the cracks. I can set Boomerang to let me know if an email hasn’t been opened within a certain time frame or to nudge me to follow up if it has been opened.

  • When I can’t dig into important incoming email, I can select messages to be boomeranged back to me at a better time.

Let’s say I’m head down on creating a slide deck and want to work undisturbed. But life goes on, and I see a few important emails come in during that time. Instead of interrupting myself to review and respond, I can schedule them to be boomeranged back to me at a time when I’m able to digest them and respond.

I think you see what I mean. But still, don’t tell my husband.

What tools do you use to make your life easier, make sure things don’t fall through the cracks, or keep things moving forward despite the craziness?

Please share your favorites in the comments section, including name, price, and the value it delivers to you. Thanks so much. Always looking for new helpers.

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Fri, May 08 2015

Nonprofit Link Round Up

Caryn Stein's avatar

VP, Communications and Content, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

It’s the weekend, y’all! Here’s a sampling of the links and resources that caught our eye this week at the NFG corral. Roundup

Do you have an over-active editing committee when it comes to your donor outreach? Mary Cahalane offers her advice on how to respond when they challenge your fundraising appeal.

Nice to see our friend and NTEN CEO Amy Sample Ward featured in this NPR piece: Crowdfunded Campaigns For Nepal Are Huge. Is That A Good Way To Give?

At Network for Good, we’ve enabled nearly $1M in giving for Nepal Earthquake relief efforts. Jeff Brooks shares how you can nudge disaster responders become committed donors.

The 2nd Give Local America! day is in the books and nonprofits across the country raised over $68 million dollars on May 5! Wow! What do you do now? Here are 5 things to do after your big giving day.

Donor Relations Guru Lynne Wester takes a closer look at the latest research from Ablia and gives a good overview of how nonprofits can align their strategy with donor preferences.

What does it really mean to be an engaged donor? Derrick Feldmann shares his take on the PND Blog.

Are you including the beneficiaries of your work in your donor thank you plan? University of Minnesota’s student athletes participated in a thank-a-thon to underscore the human impact of the university’s supporters. Talk about a rewarding event for all involved!

What’s the State of the Nonprofit Sector? Nell Edgington offers a great summary of Nonprofit Finance Fund’s recently released 7th annual State of the Sector survey. Key takeaway: sustainable funding continues to be a huge challenge for many organizations.

Finally, Claire Axelrad gave nonprofits a huge gift this week with her post, 6 Secrets to Getting Your Donor Thank You Out in 48 Hours.

That’s it for this week. Have a post or favorite resource you love? Share it with us in the comments below!

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Wed, May 06 2015

Wow: Recurring Giving Challenge Winners

Annika Pettitt's avatar

Customer Success Manager, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

Wow! That’s the general sentiment around here at Network for Good at the conclusion of the Recurring Giving Challenge. We officially ended the challenge last Thursday and while we’ve crunched the numbers and updated the leaderboards we’ve let out a never-ending chorus of wows and today we’re so excited to share the results with you.

During the challenge we saw our nonprofit customers jump in feet first to new campaigns, ask for feedback about their work, and find success in expanding their base of recurring donors. All of that hard work has paid off big time, not only in new recurring donors providing steady support, but also their share of $20,000 in bonus rewards from the Network for Good Generosity Fund. Join us in celebrating our Recurring Giving Challenge winners. Don’t hesitate to do a happy dance and shout “wow” with us.

Recurring Giving Challenge Winners:

Most New Monthly Donors in the Challenge Period:

Largest Percent Increase in Monthly Donors:

Staff Pick Awards:

Keep your eye on the blog for updates from these organizations. We’ll be asking them to share their secrets for success and passing their insights along to you.

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Fri, May 01 2015

Nonprofit Link Round Up

Liz Ragland's avatar

Senior Content and Marketing Associate, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

Nonprofit Link Round Up

A recent study from Dunham+Company reported that only 42% of U.S. churches give congregants an option to tithe online. But, 70% of non-church nonprofits offer online giving options. As our recent Digital Giving Index reported, and Dunham+Company's research confirms, online giving is outpacing overall giving. Have you made an online donation to your nonprofit recently? Was it easy? Take our test and find out.

Are you disconnected from donors? Do you even know what they want from your organization? A recent study shows that you are most likely ignoring donor preferences. via Chronicle of Philanthropy

If your nonprofit is exploring a rebrand, it's crucial that you involve your board. You need them to feel confident in the direction your nonprofit's brand is headed and you need them to trust the process. Big Duck has some tips on how you can do a better job of looping in your board during the rebrand process.

Your mission statement is not your organization's story. Your mission statement can be exemplified by telling stories, but there is no need to inject your statement in these stories. Instead, focus on the people you are serving and the problems you are tackling and let your vision and mission shine by demonstrating the impact you are making on people's lives. via John Haydon's Blog

You might think it's impossible to retain donors who give through a disaster giving campaign but Sean Triner disagrees. He's proposed a journey for new donors who give through emergency campaigns by leveraging quick communication, asking for a second gift at the right time, and retargeting ads. via 101fundraising

Since Give Local America! is this coming week it's a good time to review this infographic published last year: Who Gives to Crowdfunding Events? Bottom line: it's not just younger donors who give small gifts, donors who fit a wide range of demographics give on giving days. via Kimbia

Have you responded to the call for donations to help those in Nepal? Donate to one of ten nonprofits who are working to help those who are recovering from the earthquake.

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Thu, April 30 2015

Nonprofit Spotlight: Homeless Children’s Playtime Project

Annika Pettitt's avatar

Customer Success Manager, Network for Good

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Filed under:   Fun stuff •

Network for Good works with so many amazing nonprofits and we want to introduce you to them and the great work they are doing! This week we want to introduce you to someone close to our home office here in Washington, DC. We love supporting our customers with great online fundraising tools and in real life: this weekend we’ll be putting on our running shoes and hitting the trails for the Homeless Children’s Playtime Project’s annual Defenders of Play 5k.

Meet Homeless Children’s Playtime Project

Nonprofit Spotlight: Children's Playtime Project

Creative play is vital to a child’s development. It encourages confidence, self-expression, and exploration. Children experiencing homelessness often lack access to safe places to play in shelters and transitional housing. Luckily, families in DC have The Homeless Children’s Playtime Project, an organization committed to nurturing healthy child development and reducing the affects of trauma among children living in temporary housing programs. With a large volunteer base and program sites across the city, Playtime Project gives young children and teens a safe space to play while lifting up the voices of families to ensure that safe, supportive shelters and affordable housing remain priorities in the District.

Supporting Volunteers

Playtime volunteers supervise play rooms, coordinate events, help with administrative duties, fundraise, and advocate for the needs of homeless families. Without volunteers, communications and outreach manager Kelli Beyer readily admits that Playtime wouldn’t be able to accomplish what it has. Last year, Playtime trained 376 volunteers who made a weekly commitment to working with the organization. With no full time coordinator, recruiting, training, and supporting these volunteers is a team effort. It’s clear their effort to recognize and celebrate volunteers as the vital asset they are has paid off: nearly 50% of new volunteers say they heard about Playtime from another supporter. It’s that level of passionate engagement with the organization’s mission that makes Playtime such a success.

Why We’re Running with Playtime

Not only do we love the mission, we can’t resist the opportunity to dress up, have a little fun, and defend kid’s right to play!

Homeless Children's Playtime Project 5K Homeless Children's Playtime Project 5K Homeless Children's Playtime Project 5K

For more 5K photos, head over to their Facebook Page (and like them while you’re there)!

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