I’m horrible with goodbyes. I mean, horrible.

You would think I would have the perfect see-ya-later wave almost down to an art by now, especially considering I’m living 700 miles away from friends and family (despite me trying everything except putting for-sale signs in their yards to get them to move closer). But no. I’m a crier- a really, really ugly crier. And rather than waving goodbye, flashing a killer smile and maybe even a little wink, I wale. and sometimes run after cars.

My cube-mate is moving to St. Louis for six months. No big deal, right? Right…

So what’s my deal? Maybe it’s that I’ll have to learn how to function for a little bit without her constant approval of my work, or maybe it’s that I’m worried they’ll stick me with someone who talks too much or too little. You see, Lauren and I have a system. It’s comfortable. I can count on her. Saying goodbye to her is like saying goodbye to the fortress of safety we’ve built around our tiny, gray cube walls.

But she’ll return and I’ll get my groove back. But this leaves me wondering- what about all the donors that leave? All the people that walk out and don’t return- no goodbye at all, just an absence of support and donor dollars. Now that’s something worth crying over. But you can do something about it, combat the depressing attrition rates. The roundup below will get you started and help minimize those goodbyes.

Here are this week’s nonprofit highlights:

  • What’s the sound of your nonprofit’s brand? Have you ever thought about it? You should. With the ever declining attention span of your audience, it’s necessary that you start appealing to a broader range of senses. Colleen Fahey’s article, How Audio Enhances Your Brand Content: Find Your Signature Sound, provides guidance for how your nonprofit can strengthen its voice.
  •  In Marc Koenig’s NPhub post, 7 Tips on Asking for Donations – It’s Intimidating, We Get It, he reminds fundraisers that asking isn’t about convincing donors to give. It’s about reminding them why they care and giving them an opportunity to join your cause. Asking for money can be sweat inducing, but it’s a lot less painful if you’re prepared. Know who you’re asking, what you’re asking, and then *shhhhhh* let them talk.
  • Beth Kanter provides simple, yet super helpful advice on how your organization can keep track of aha moments, lessons, ideas, mistakes and experiences during  events. In Keep Calm and Write It Down: How Reflective Practice Leads To Better Results for Nonprofits, we’re reminded that a key step to improvement is having an accurate retrospective view. So get out your journals and start taking note.
  • Tech Impact echoes words from BBCON and The Nonprofit Times in their post: 6 Tips For Creating A Better Donation Form. Optimizing your donation form is about removing barriers and thinking simple. Don’t miss out on gifts because your form is a turnoff.
  • Calling yourself friendly doesn’t make you friendly– truth. Jeff Brooks draws on some unpleasant flight experience to remind nonprofits that it’s about walking the walk. Don’t lose donors because you leave promises unfulfilled. Mean what you say.
  • Who pays the tab at a meeting with a donor? In Marc Pitman’s latest, he suggests you assume it’s always you. Don’t let your donor-date end on an awkward note by stressing about who’s picking up the tab. Bring your wallet, and focus on providing a positive experience for your donor.
  • Wild Apricot’s Small Membership Insight Survey has some Good News About Millennials and Meetings. Even though Gen Y has been bred on digital, they (we) recognize the value in face-to-face interactions. The key  to getting that face time at your events is reaching them first online- on their terms- and including their friends.

I’ll catch you next week.

Yours truly,

MaddieT

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Madeline Turner is the Online and Social Marketing Manager at Blackbaud. Prior to running Blackbaud’s social media and thought leadership blog npENGAGE, Madeline worked as a Managing Editor for Blackbaud’s Content Marketing program. It is her goal to create content and share ideas that challenge the status quo of the nonprofit industry. When Madeline isn’t tweeting or writing blog posts, you can find her drinking coffee out of her ‘Crazy Cat Lady’ mug, wearing giant headphones and singing off-key.

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