Author: Laurence A. Pagnoni

The tips below will help your virtual gala succeed.

Make Your Online Gala Pop

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA Participants are expecting more personal engagement — and a higher production quality — from your online gala and fundraising events.   What worked last year will not carry the day if you want to raise more in 2022.  Galas are a show. And in this era of virtual and hybrid events, it’s important for you to think differently and make your virtual event as engaging as possible.  Many online galas and smaller Parties With A Purpose have room for production and program improvement. Pay attention to the nuances, because fundraising in the time of COVID-19 means

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Recurring Giving

Generate Ongoing Revenue Through Recurring Giving

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA A well-executed recurring giving program can generate consistent, ongoing revenue for your mission. Brooklyn Defender Services, a LAPA Fundraising client, recently closed its 2021 annual fund campaign with nearly 6,000 new donors — and recently established a monthly giving program as part of the effort to boost its annual fund. By identifying annual fund donors who are willing to support the organization through automated monthly contributions, Brooklyn Defender Services now has a steady stream of recurring revenue in 2022 from these newly acquired supporters. Your organization can follow a similar path by creating data-driven, personalized

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Does positive or negative messaging raise more funds?

Do Negativity and Alarm Really Raise Funds?

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA A reader writes: “My inbox and mailbox are flooded with fundraising appeals from causes using the words ‘terrifying,’ ‘alarming,’ ‘emergency,’ etc.  “Yes, we’re in deep sh*t on many levels. Why would they think I don’t know this? The messages only make me more depressed, and depression does not motivate me to contribute. Does negativity and alarm really raise funds?”  —John, CEO of a civic education nonprofit   Dear John, This is a top-of-mind question for many fundraising professionals. Fundraisers use danger messages because marketing data often (not always) shows they’re highly effective when compared with

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Private Grants Are They for You(1)

Private Grants: Are They for You?

Six steps to making a grants assessment. By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA and Sheldon Bart Here’s a tale of two real nonprofits. Let’s call the first one Amazing Youth, and the second The Real Deal Healthcare. Amazing Youth operates a transitional shelter for homeless youth limited by law to a modest number of residents, fewer than 10. The Real Deal Healthcare operates a community health center serving thousands of low-income patients. Both are LAPA clients. What they have in common is that for many years both neglected private grant revenue. Eventually, each one came to understand the value of outsourcing

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Our 2022 Crystal Ball

Our 2022 Crystal Ball

By Brooke Bryant, Ph.D; Robin Merle, CFRE; and Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA As we approach a new year, fundraisers continue to navigate an unsettled landscape. The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, calls for racial justice, changing donor expectations, and a tight labor market have been central themes in 2021 — and they will continue to influence how we approach our work in 2022. Against that backdrop, we offer these 12 fundraising trends to watch over the next 12 months: The 12 Biggest Nonprofit Trends for 2022 Donors Will Give More Generously Equity Must Be Front and Center Hybrid Is Here to Stay Megadonors Will Be

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How Do You Bring Equity Into Your Fundraising Practices

How Do You Bring Equity Into Your Fundraising Practices?

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA LAPA blog reader Kennita, who works for a historic preservation nonprofit, writes, “How do I bring equity into our fundraising practices?” Thanks for writing, Kennita, and that’s a terrific question. I hope my answer is useful. It just so happens that a key advanced fundraising trend is to bring equity into your fundraising practices. But what does that really mean, and how do you implement it? For a complete view of 2022 fundraising trends, watch this video. Fundamental Questions Here are two fundamental questions to get you started. What is your fundraising equity approach? The

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New Year Questions Every Fundraiser Is Asking

New Year Questions Every Fundraiser Is Asking

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA A good question is said to be worth more than a good answer! I believe that wholeheartedly. The dawn of a new year is a perfect time to reassess. As fundraisers, investigating our strategies and practices brings us more revenue. The start of the year is a chance to be reflective and to look ahead. It also offers the first opportunity for many of us to take a deep breath and relax after the hectic year-end giving season. This investigation starts with asking the right questions. The most empowering and galvanizing questions create value. They

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The Last Four Days When Online Giving Quintuples

The Last Four Days: When Online Giving Quintuples

The month of December is the most important month for giving overall, and online giving in particular. Approximately one out of every three dollars in annual giving is donated during the month of December. In fact, 28% of nonprofits raise between 26 – 50% of their annual funds from their year-end drive. An additional 36% of nonprofits raise just under 10% of their annual funds from their year-end ask.

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Securing Donor-Advised Funds

How To Secure More Gifts From Donor-Advised Funds

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA We must ensure that all charitable donations are made available for charitable use, rather than languishing indefinitely in donor-advised funds (DAFs). After all, donors who contribute to DAFs receive an immediate tax benefit. But nonprofits have no idea when they’ll ever see a dime. DAFs have come under fire for the fact that they are not legally required to spend the money that they receive and can hold it for as long as they want. Plus, the fiduciary managers have an incentive to keep the money in the DAF. Granted, many donor-advised fundholders are both

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LAPA

How to Win a Government Grant

By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA, and Perry W. Kaplan Federal and state agencies provide significant support to nonprofits each year through government grants. But the process for applying for government grants is far from easy. In fact, it’s quite complicated. Competition for government support is intense — and the application process is fraught with complexity. Winning a government grant requires nonprofits to carefully align the main pieces of their grant proposals. Here are seven tips for effectively competing for — and winning — a government grant. Match the Funder’s Priorities More than ever, getting funded requires that you propose projects

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