The Leaky Bucket Nonprofit Blog

Measuring Fundraising Effectiveness: What BoardSource Overlooked

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Tue, Apr 09, 2019 @ 11:42 AM

I'm always writing about fundraising effectiveness, and thought maybe it would be a good idea to  define the term itself. So I was happy to find a great article at BoardSource. BoardSource, the definitive resource for all things nonprofit-board-related, did some excellent research and came up with powerful messages insights about fundraising effectiveness. But they overlooked a critical component: how to manage the people who raise the money.


Fundraising Effectiveness: Are Your Donors Worth the Effort?

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Tue, Apr 02, 2019 @ 10:04 AM

Fundraising is hard enough, so it's easy to fall back on the idea that any donor will do. But you might not know what it costs your nonprofit, if you lack a documented ideal-donor profile including giving motivations. The cost could run into thousands of dollars - per hour.


3 Tips for Driving Donor Engagement Through Your Web Design

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Tue, Mar 26, 2019 @ 11:12 AM

There are hundreds, maybe even thousands of articles out there about forming a general strategy for donor engagement. However, very few take into consideration that every organization is different. Cookie-cutter solutions just won’t cut it for most organizations. We recently formed a partnership with Morweb, an innovative company specializing in website design and management specifically for nonprofit organizations.

Morweb founder Murad Bushnaq wrote this blog post for us. See his bio and photo at the end of this post.


What Fundraising Can (and Should) Learn from Sales

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Tue, Dec 18, 2018 @ 10:38 AM

The terms “sales” and "selling" make a lot of nonprofit people nervous, which is too bad. There are many beneficial sales skills nonprofits would be wise to adopt, especially if you're raising major gifts and corporate sponsorship. So kindly overcome your distaste for “sales” and “selling” and read on. Fundraising and selling are two ways to generate income. Why not see what our for-profit brethren are doing that we could use??


Have a Happy, Stress-Free Holiday

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Wed, Dec 12, 2018 @ 09:52 AM

Fundraising professionals, are you burned out from too many holiday parties, cheese platters, cheap wine, and endless networking? Did the board ask you to hold "just one more holiday party" this year? Does "holiday cheer" start to sound like "holiday torture" around now?  If that's the case, you're suffering from EFS - Extreme Fundraising Stress. This malady occurs most frequently at the end of the year, when you and every other fundraising professional and nonprofit executive are driving the bulk of their annual appeals and special events. If EFS is getting you down, it's time to use the Bristol Strategy Group SMART Tips for a stress-free and productive holiday season:


Management Secrets for Super-Power Fundraising

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Thu, Apr 12, 2018 @ 04:19 PM

This is the first in a series of blogs about things YOU can do to make it easier for your development shop to get consistently great results and predictable levels of growth, by improving the way you manage things. 


 Are Your Donors GOOD ENOUGH For You?

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Mon, Apr 09, 2018 @ 02:06 PM

Tired of donor prospects who promise much but deliver little?  Wasting time on donors who can't seem to make up their minds?  No surprise. Raising major gifts (or major anythings) is hard work. Plus it's even tougher when your "prospects" turn out to be DOA - dead on arrival. They don't really have the money. They don't really love your mission. Or they just don't like you, personally. Sigh.



3 Ways Prospect Research Boosts Fundraising Productivity

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Wed, Jan 03, 2018 @ 11:27 PM

As all good fundraising managers know, raising money requires heavy-duty attention to ROI – return on investment. And the stakes go up when you’re looking for major gifts. Today's blog is a guest post from our official partners at DonorSearch, the experts in prospect research.


4 Missing Management Tools That Derail Your Fundraising Success - Part 4 of the Revolutionizing Fundraising Series

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Wed, Dec 06, 2017 @ 08:15 AM


This is the fourth in our series on fundraising management. Last time we talked about Three Major Duties of Great Fundraising Management. This time we’ll discuss the must have management tools for your teams fundraising success.


Three Major Duties of Great Fundraising Management - Part 3 in Our Series

Posted by Ellen Bristol on Wed, Nov 01, 2017 @ 08:45 AM

This is the third article in our series on fundraising management. This time, we’ll discuss how good management practices remove obstacles to success. This is one of the three majorduties of management. And by the way, we’ll reveal (gasp!) the difference between management and “managers.”


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