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Bigfoot and the Average Donor


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“The ‘average donor’ doesn’t exist,” so say many nonprofit leaders. And yet, they construct fundraising programs that are built for precisely that. Is it any wonder why “average” performance is the outcome?

Treating different donors differently is the key to scalability in your fundraising system, says Larry C Johnson, Founder of The Eight Principles of Sustainable Fundraising®. Principle 6: Divide & Grow™ is the “why” that points to the “how” of scalability for your organization.

Achieving scalability—and sustainability—in fundraising is possible for every organization—even yours. Combining the knowledge and understanding of The Eight Principles™ with the power of a donor-focused CRM system, like Bloomerang, will put your fundraising program into the winners’ circle.

Larry believes in the power of relationships, in the power of philanthropy, to create a better place and transform lives. With twenty-five years of experience in professional philanthropy, Larry has worked with the leaders of hundreds of nonprofit organizations and philanthropists seeking to improve the lives of those around them.

Author of the award-winning book, The Eight Principles of Sustainable Fundraising®, AFP named Larry Outstanding Development Executive in 2010. The Wall Street Business Network ranks him in the Top 30 Fundraising Consultants in the USA. Larry is a graduate of Yale University.

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Bigfoot and the Average Donor

  1. 1. Presented by BEWARE OF BIGFOOT: APPRECIATING DONOR DIFFERENCES Larry C Johnson, CFRE Author of The Eight Principles of Sustainable Fundraising®
  2. 2. Bigfoot* *A prehistoric, mythic creature said to roam the forests of North America and similar to the “average donor.”
  3. 3. The “Average” Donor • Doesn’t exist • Many fundraising programs assume homogeneity • Where’s the disconnect?
  4. 4. Whether we acknowledge them, or are even aware of them, there are timeless principles that act upon all fundraising efforts—for good or ill.
  6. 6. A principle is. . . • universal, timeless, often self-evident • external to ourselves • in effect with or without our awareness of it or our endorsement of it • predictable in the outcomes it produces
  7. 7. “One size fits all” fund development programs spring from a lack of awareness and appreciation of a fundamental principle of sustainable fundraising.
  9. 9. Principle 6: Divide and Grow™ • Your donor constituency divides or “segments” itself according to. . . • Ability and Affinity • Work with donor behavior, not against it
  10. 10. The Four Building Blocks • • • • Acquisition Retention Progression Coordination
  11. 11. Adopting a Workable Business Model: Groceries Or Aircraft
  12. 12. Foundational Principle Structuring fundraising efforts around natural divisions of the donor base is essential to maximizing sustainable growth
  13. 13. Primary Paradigms • • • • Affinity Ability 80/20 Sustainability and scalability require a long-term focus
  14. 14. Principle 6: Divide & Grow™ Achieving scalability in fundraising requires the focus and discipline to treat different donors differently.
  15. 15. Essential Processes • • • • Acquisition Retention Progression Coordination
  16. 16. The Role of a CRM System • Provides the structural framework for treating different donors differently • Provides the tools for executing the four essential processes • Helps to insure coordination and accountability
  17. 17. Thank you. Questions?