Why we love the Boston Marathon

The Boston Marathon is more than a road race–it’s also been an important platform for social change. Alyssa Rosenberg explains: The Boston Marathon is the oldest continuously-run annual marathon in the world, and the second-oldest footrace, inspired in its first year, 1897, by the marathon at… Read More

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The Jimmy Fund Encourages Us All to Think Big

It’s been said that “prototyping is the language of innovation.” A video of the human experience of your proposed new event concept is a prototype. Used correctly, an Excel spreadsheet is a prototyping tool. Google’s Gmail started out as a prototype. A temporary pop-up shop is a prototype. So how do……

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Cycle for Survival Helps Reinvent the Charity Ride

I’m always on the lookout for cost-effective event fundraising concepts. That’s why I’m intrigued by the success of Cycle for Survival, a team cycling event that takes place indoors. It’s a brilliant idea that overcomes the logistical and monetary challenges of outdoor cycling events — and one that…

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Your out of office reply email stinks!

I have a secret: I actually read your automatic out-of-the-office reply emails. And they stink. As event fundraisers, we are in the impact and experience business, but you wouldn’t know it from these seemingly innocuous automated email messages. But a few weeks ago, one actually made me smile: Alright boys……

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You’re Working on the Wrong Thing

— Michael E. Porter, Harvard professor and author of the seminal management book Competitive Strategy (of “five forces” fame), speaking to global entrepreneurs about what he thinks is their epidemic inclination to try and win by doing what they do better than their competitors. “The worst error in strategy…

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The Star Wars Storytelling Method

If measurement and analytics are the science of fundraising, what is the art? Sharing stories. As fundraisers and marketers, we spend a lot of time creating singular, point-in-time messages that are often quite tactical in nature. Rarely are these messages about a human or social impact outcomes, and they are……

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Use your strategic intuition

You might be on event, in the shower, or daydreaming at your desk when suddenly inspiration hits. Sudden insights like this have sparked leaders, artists and scientists throughout history. But where do these great ideas originate? Researchers in neuroscience and cognitive psychology are finally studying these insights to explain “Aha!”……

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Are fundraisers too obsessed by technique?

There is a certain distinctiveness to the many telefundraising calls and direct mail pieces I’ve received this holiday season–each caller and mailer seems to think they are the only person asking me for a donation this month; the only person offering me a prized tax deduction. Adrian Sargeant, a professor……

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7 Post Event Email Sins

In this article, I’ll show you some bad email fundraising and marketing practices, how you can improve online relationships, and how to avoid unsubscribes. This morning when I opened my email, the first two messages I read were transactional emails (emails facilitating, competing or confirming a previously agreed upon transaction).…

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