The hottest fundraising topics of 2023 – as voted by you!

As I’m wrapping up for the year, I wanted to share the top five articles that got your attention in 2023.

But first, I wanted to say a heartfelt THANK YOU to you for taking the time to read and share my posts.

I’ve had a blast writing all of them - and if they’ve made your life a little better, and your fundraising more successful, I consider my mission accomplished! ✅

So, without further ado, here are the top five hottest Blue Sky Philanthropy reads of 2023:

      1. [Quick Tip] The #1 donor engagement mistake

In this popular series, I shared tips that are quick for you to read, simple to implement, and - most importantly - when you use them consistently, they’re effective ways to grow your major gift fundraising.

These tips were all inspired by you, and your response to my recent question:

What’s the #1 challenge you are facing when it comes to your major gift fundraising?

In this quick tip, I shared a big mistake that I see a lot of nonprofits make  - and it’s actually feeding into these challenges you’re identifying, and getting in the way of your major gift growth.

I call it the Firehose Effect.

      2. [Quick Tip] Don't give up on donors too soon 

When you are tempted to stop following up too soon, it’s time to have a closer look at your major gift mindset.

Here’s some common thoughts that comes up when I am coaching fundraisers and nonprofit leaders on landing more major gifts:

“He’s too busy to meet with me...”

“If I follow up again they’re going to think I’m pestering them!”

“Why would a major donor want to speak with me? I’m not important enough…”

If this sounds familiar, I want you to know - this is totally normal, and you’re not alone!

I want to encourage you to be persistent, and don’t give up on your donors too soon

      3. 3 underused ways to connect with major donors 

Are you struggling to come up with a meaningful reason to reach out to a major donor? 

Being persistent and consistent in your connection with donors is key to your fundraising success – but it’s SO easy to get bogged down in overthinking your touchpoints with existing and potential donors.

We spend way too much time worrying about getting it perfect, and in doing so, we let great opportunities to simply and humanly connect with our donors just pass us by.

Here are three of my favourite underused ways to connect with major donors – and even though I’m talking about major donors here, any of these ideas can be adapted to build relationships with any of your donors, volunteers, or supporters.

      4. Why introverts make the best major gift fundraisers 

 Are you a reluctant introvert like me? 

Well, maybe it’s high time to embrace your introvert super powers - because introverts bring invaluable skills and strengths to fundraising and leadership. 

Your strengths mean you’re naturally suited to raising more 5, 6, and even 7-figure gifts for your mission! 

Here’s why introverts excel at major gifts and make the best major gift fundraisers. 

     5. 3 secrets to successful donor meetings 

Have you ever left a donor meeting thinking, “what just happened?”

You had a nice lunch, caught up on what the kids and grandkids were up to, heard about their latest travel adventures, and gave them a little update on the program they support.

And the next thing you know, you’re picking up the tab and saying your goodbyes.

There’s nothing wrong with small talk, or program updates – done well, those can both be important elements in a donor meeting.

But getting more strategic about how you use your time in donor meetings can help take your relationships – and your major gift program – to the next level.

Here are three secrets that will help make your next major donor meeting a huge success.

That’s all from me! I’m signing off for 2023 – I’ll be taking some time to unplug and spend time with my family over the holidays, and I’ll be back in action in January.

Whatever you are doing as your year winds down, I wish you all the best. You’ve worked so hard this year raising money for your great cause, and I hope you too will get some time to rest and recharge, so you’re back better than ever in 2023!

We’ll be back in 2024 with some exciting things along with weekly fundraising tips and resources - consider signing up for our newsletter to make sure you don’t miss anything!

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