By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA A lot of donor information is hidden. Most donors aren’t advertising their net worth or telling us about the other nonprofits they donate to. So it’s up to us to do the research in advance of our conversations with them. Three Options Nonprofits have three options for conducting this research: Conducting In-House Research — Larger nonprofits with the financial means often build dedicated research teams into their organizational structure. Hiring a Consultant — Instead of hiring a full-time prospect researcher or having an existing staff member screen donors, you can bring in consultants like LAPA
Category: Development Consultant
By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA What the heck is Philanthropy Operations, and why is it important? The fundraising positions of Director of Development or Chief Development Officer are familiar, but what do Directors of Philanthropic Operations (DPOs or Ops. Dir.) do? And why is the function less well known? (Those of you in higher education may know the function as “Advancement Services.”) A focus on Philanthropic Operations becomes necessary as your development function grows and as you seek to deepen the quality of your advancement work. The position or function is less well known because so few nonprofits truly invest
LAPA Fundraising is expert in fundraising services (campaigns, annual funds, planning services, and grants). We conduct desk studies to identify new funders and donors. These research exercises have proven to be an excellent first step and a tremendous benefit to our clients because they lay a proper foundation from which to build.
By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA Many fundraisers are neither memorable nor impactful, and when they leave an organization, they go out with a whimper, not a bang. I’m as upset about this as you must be. One may think there’s a bevy of great fundraisers out there, but that’s not my experience. A lack of authentic mentoring contributes to this “excellence” problem. As a field, we do a poor job mentoring younger fundraising professionals, for sure. Further, while we have more fundraising certificate programs and graduate degrees than ever before, few nonprofits know what the credentials mean. The viability of
By Laurence A. Pagnoni, MPA So the funder declined your proposal because you weren’t serving enough clients from their geographic area of interest. Don’t give up! There’s a way to handle this problem. 5-Year Spreads You’re probably presenting your outcome data on an annual basis. Every year, we serve this many clients. Some funders may have so extremely narrow a geographic focus that even if your client population is sizable overall, the number coming annually from Richmond County, or Westchester, or western Pennsylvania may not be large enough to induce them to approve a grant. Well, the western Pennsylvanians might