Thursday, March 25, 2010

Find Your Burning Desire--to fundraise successfully

highlights from Find Your Burning Desire--Day 1
from bestseller 30 Days to Successful Fundraising
Order full text from
by Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein
You cannot succeed in life or in fundraising if you have an anemic goal, mission, or vision statement.
Successful fundraising is NOT about asking for money; it's about MUCH MORE than that.
Thought rules the world.
Too often, in the process of anticipating the search for funds, fundraisers forget or take for granted the underlying idea that inspired their purpose or porject, focusing only on the acquisition of dollars.
In fundraising, as in business, money follows great ideas.
Sometimes, an idea that started as a burning desire burns out over time and needs to be rekindled.

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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Free Webinar for Nonprofit Fundraisers: How to turn Twitter into dollars!

For NONPROFIT Fundraisers: How to turn Twitter into dollars!
Join us for a Webinar on March 24

Space is limited.Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

Do you have Twitter-jitters? Are you afraid to use it because you haven't a clue about how it can expand your fundraising universe?

Are you a Twitter-fritter? Do you waste your words on Twitter because you don't know how to use it to dynamize your fundraising?

Are you a Twitter-quitter? Have you already given up on it because you never figured out how to maximize its power for fundraising?

Well, this webinar is designed for YOU! It takes ALL of the mystery out of Twitter. It will show you how to "fire up" your Twitter account. It will explore powerful strategies you can use to find potential donors and lead them to your "Selling Space."

Recommended for Twitter virgins, novices, and everyone else. Presenters: Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein & Brian Ross Lee

For NONPROFIT Fundraisers: How to turn Twitter into dollars!
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
11:00 AM - 11:30 AM EDT
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.
System RequirementsPC-based attendeesRequired: Windows® 7, Vista, XP, 2003 Server or 2000
Macintosh®-based attendeesRequired: Mac OS® X 10.4.11 (Tiger®) or newer

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Monday, March 15, 2010

FREE WEBINAR 3/17: Social media/fundraising: Doesn't have to take FOREVER

Raise More Money with Social Media NOW! You Don't Have to Cultivate Donors Forever
Join us for a Webinar on March 17

Space is limited.Reserve your Webinar seat now at:

The buzz about using social media for fundraising is WAIT and be patient. Sometime in the future, ask for a donation. But the same people who tell you to wait can't tell you exactly when the time will be right. In the meantime, you could be out of business. The fact is: You DON'T have to wait forever to approach potential donors to support your cause. You just need to use 7 powerful strategies to maximize your online communication and MONETIZE your "selling space." Presenters: Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein and Brian Ross Lee identify and discuss the 7 strategies so you can put them to work for you TODAY!

Raise More Money with Social Media NOW! You Don't Have to Cultivate Donors Forever
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
11:00 AM - 11:30 AM EDT
After registering you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the Webinar.
System RequirementsPC-based attendeesRequired: Windows® 7, Vista, XP, 2003 Server or 2000
Macintosh®-based attendeesRequired: Mac OS® X 10.4.11 (Tiger®) or newer


Sunday, March 07, 2010

Fundraising is selling!

“The Fundraising Guru”
Fundraising only gels if you sell well
By Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein

I know that people who work on behalf of nonprofits like to think of themselves as doing something for the common good. I know that because, whenever I hold workshops, the first question I ask participants is, “What is a nonprofit?” And invariably, their answers accentuate an altruistic angle. “It’s an organization that serves society,” they say, or one “that helps the needy,” or it’s “a group of individuals who hold events to raise money for worthy purposes.”

The last thing in the world that supporters of nonprofits like to think they are is salespeople; they consider themselves a cut above schnooks selling shoes or used cars. I know that because when I ask my second question—“What is fundraising?”—no one ever answers “sales.” Instead predictably, the answers have a mushy quality equal to the definition of a nonprofit. Fundraising is the “ability to raise capital for an entity,” “stewardship, relationship-building in order to raise funds for an agency,” “an effort to generate funds for a good cause.”

So, it’s time for a major reality check for everyone who works on behalf of nonprofits. From doctors and plumbers to entrepreneurs and artists, successful people know how to sell--well. Fundraising is “nonprofit sales,” pure and simple. If you don’t know how to sell, you’ll never be an effective fundraiser. And if your first reaction to the idea of “nonprofit fundraising as selling” is to hold your nose, you’re probably holding back whatever cause(s) you support. So, here are some basic tips to help you increase your effectiveness in fundraising sales:

1. Selling is the quintessential skill. It’s not about getting others to do something they don’t want to or to buy something they don’t need. At its best, selling is the highest form of communication: It’s about making the perfect match between what you have to offer and what someone else wants. It’s an art.

2. Rejection isn’t rejection. So what if someone says no to you. It’s not the end of your life nor should you punish them on your voodoo doll. Think of how many times you may have said no to someone without meaning any ill towards them—and move on to someone else.

3. Fundraising is not about “the ask,” but about “the listen.” Remember the lyric, “fools rush in where angels fear to tread.” Consider your customers before you chew their ears off about your cause. Too many do-gooder fundraisers have a “prima facie, ipso facto attitude.” They think that all they have to do is blurt out the basics of their case and their prey will open their wallet. Ain’t so! Do your homework: Find out about people you approach. Take an interest in them. You’ll be amazed at how interested they’ll become in you.

4. Commit to selling 24/7. The best/most successful fundraisers even dream about raising money. Fundraising is a frame of mind, an all-consuming passion, not a 9-to-5 job. From a check-out line in Publix to a tuxedo-filled ballroom, fundraiser-salespeople know that there are six degrees of separation—or less--between them and the next contribution they receive.

5. Multiply your donors’ gifts. Donors who are treated well beget other donors. The most successful fundraiser-salespeople know that fundraising only gels if you sell well.
Dr. Stephen Goldstein if the author of 30 Days to Successful Fundraising and the host of the broadcast radio program, “The Forum for Nonprofits,” which is also available 24/7 from anywhere in the world.


Friday, March 05, 2010

Another surprise philanthropist story

South Florida
Amazing Grace:
Lake Forest secret millionaire donates fortune to college
Woman who lived frugally donates $7 million to alma mater
By John Keilman, Tribune reporter
11:25 AM EST, March 4, 2010
Like many people who lived through the Great Depression, Grace Groner was exceptionally restrained with her money.

She got her clothes from rummage sales. She walked everywhere rather than buy a car. And her one-bedroom house in Lake Forest held little more than a few plain pieces of furniture, some mismatched dishes and a hulking TV set that appeared left over from the Johnson administration.

Her one splurge was a small scholarship program she had created for Lake Forest College, her alma mater. She planned to contribute more upon her death, and when she passed away in January, at the age of 100, her attorney informed the college president what that gift added up to.

"Oh, my God," the president said.

Groner's estate, which stemmed from a $180 stock purchase she made in 1935, was worth $7 million.

The money is going into a foundation that will enable many of Lake Forest's 1,300 students to pursue internships and study-abroad programs they otherwise might have had to forgo. It will be an appropriate memorial to a woman whose life was a testament to the higher possibilities of wealth.

"She did not have the (material) needs that other people have," said William Marlatt, her attorney and longtime friend. "She could have lived in any house in Lake Forest but she chose not to. … She enjoyed other people, and every friend she had was a friend for who she was. They weren't friends for what she had."

Groner was born in a small Lake County farming community, but by the time she was 12 both of her parents had died. She was taken in by George Anderson, a member of one of Lake Forest's leading families and an apparent friend to Groner's parents.

The Andersons raised her and her twin sister, Gladys, and paid for them to attend Lake Forest College. After Groner graduated in 1931, she took a job at nearby Abbott Laboratories, where she would work as a secretary for 43 years.

It was early in her time there that she made a decision that would secure her financial future.
In 1935, she bought three $60 shares of specially issued Abbott stock and never sold them. The shares split many times over the next seven decades, Marlatt said, and Groner reinvested the dividends. Long before she died, her initial outlay had become a fortune.

Marlatt was one of the few who knew about it. Lake Forest is one of America's richest towns, filled with grand estates and teeming with luxury cars, yet Groner felt no urge to keep up with the neighbors.

She lived in an apartment for many years before a friend willed her a tiny house in a part of town once reserved for the servants. Its single bedroom could barely accommodate a twin bed and dresser; its living room was undoubtedly smaller than many Lake Forest closets.

Though Groner was frugal, she was no miser. She traveled widely upon her retirement from Abbott, volunteered for decades at the First Presbyterian Church and occasionally funneled anonymous gifts through Marlatt to needy local residents.

"She was very sensitive to people not having a whole lot," said Pastor Kent Kinney of First Presbyterian. "Grace would see those people, would know them, and she would make gifts."
Groner never wed or had children — the sister of one prospective groom blocked the marriage, Marlatt said — but with her gregarious personality she had plenty of friends. She remained connected to Lake Forest College, too, attending football games and cultural events on campus and donating $180,000 for a scholarship program.

That allowed a few students a year to study internationally, including Erin McGinley, 34, a junior from Lake Zurich. She traveled to Falmouth, Jamaica, to help document and preserve historic buildings in the former slave port. The experience was so satisfying that she is trying to get Lake Forest to create a similar architectural preservation program.

"It affected my (career ambitions) in a way I didn't expect," she said.

But Groner was interested in doing more, so two years ago she set up a foundation to receive her estate. Stephen Schutt, Lake Forest's president, knew of the plan for the past year, but had no idea how large the gift would be until after Groner passed away Jan. 19.

The foundation's millions should generate more than $300,000 a year for the college, enabling dozens more students to travel and pursue internships. Many probably wouldn't be able to pursue those opportunities without a scholarship: 75 percent of the student body receives financial aid, Schutt said.

But the study and internship program is not the end of Groner's legacy. She left that small house to the college, too. It will be turned into living quarters for women who receive foundation scholarships, and perhaps something more: an enduring symbol that money can buy far more than mansions.

It will be called, with fitting simplicity, "Grace's Cottage."
Copyright © 2010, Chicago Tribune


Monday, March 01, 2010

Announcing! FREE Webinars on Fundraising with "Social Media"

FREE Webinars will reveal the 7 Steps all nonprofits can take to turn "social media" into successful fundraising
by Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein

There's a lot of mystery, fear, confusion surrounding what are now called "social media"--inhibiting people from using them. In addition, they got a "bad" name early on: Facebook began by being used mostly by college kids; Twitter started with people posting daily trivia--I'm stuck in the airport, Just got home from the gym.

Eventually, they rose in status by being branded "social media." In fact, I'm sure that whoever coined the phrase thought him/herself very clever, indeed. I can just hear the cry of eureka! What a compelling way to label so disparate a bunch of Internet venues as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, etc.! Problem is: It's meaningless; every form of communication--from the telephone to TV--is "social" at some level, fosters relationship(s). And it's also a misleading designation, especially as these platforms have evolved into some of the most powerful ways to reach and influence people--and FREE at that!

For nonprofit fundraisers, the "social" in the term puts the emPHASIS on the wrong SYLlable; they are all very aware of the need to build bridges to potential donors; but they also have bottom lines to deliver. How long, they justifiably ask, before I can convert my friends on Facebook and my followers on Twitter into donors to my cause--and how do I do it? The answers to those and other questions about turn "social media" into successful fundraising platform will be discussed in an ongoing series of webinars. To participate int he webinars, email Dr. Stephen L. Goldstein at Put webinars in the subject and provide your name, title, organization, address, and phone number.