Nonprofit Radio for November 9, 2020: How To Work In Uncertainty & Low-Cost Fundraising Software

My Guests:

Gail Bower & Karen Eber Davis: How To Work In Uncertainty

A June study of nonprofits has lessons for now and our future. The election may be settled, but there are unknowns afoot: reaction to the election; the pandemic; a divided federal government; federal stimulus; racial reckoning; climate change. The study’s co-authors shepherd us. They’re Gail Bower at Bower & Co. Consulting LLC and Karen Eber Davis at Karen Eber Davis Consulting.

 

 

 

 

 

Chris Bernard & Amadie Hart: Low-Cost Fundraising Software

 

Chris Bernard and Amadie Hart, the co-authors of Tech Impact’s new software selection guide, talk us through: What these systems offer; how to compare them; and how to select the best one for your needs. Chris is from Tech Impact and Amadie is at Hart Strategic Marketing.

 

 

 

 

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[00:03:18.74] spk_0:
Hello and welcome to tony-martignetti non profit radio. Big non profit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host. By the time you hear this, the election will be settled. It damn well better be. I hope you were okay. Going through it. I was immersed in the horse race and probably too much, which means I still am as I’m recording. But by the time you’re listening, it looks like it’ll be over. I hope we’re both OK. Be sure to take care of yourself, please. And others, I will do the same. Let’s each be understanding of what we and those around us have been through. It’s been a crisis, a trauma, and it’s time to start healing. I know there’s a lot of work and a long journey ahead. No doubt if we each take care of ourselves and have compassion for others, we’ll be starting that journey on the right foot. Let’s get started together. Is non profit radio still your favorite abdominal podcast? I just love that word. Why say weekly? When you can say abdominal, force your friends into the dictionary, I’ll start a campaign to replace the word weekly maybe not. No campaigns for a while. Oh, I’m extra glad you’re with me. I get slapped with a diagnosis of politico phobia. If you lobbied me with the idea of missing today’s show How Toe Work in Uncertainty. A June study of nonprofits has lessons for now and our future. The election may be settled, but there are unknowns afoot. The pandemic reaction to the election, a divided federal government, federal stimulus, racial reckoning, climate change. Need I continue. The study’s co authors shepherd us there, Gail Bauer and Karen Ebert Davis and low cost fundraising software guide Chris Bernard and Amidi Heart. The co authors of Tech Impacts New Software Selection Guide. Talk us through what these systems offer, how to compare them and how to select the best one for your needs. So stop asking, what’s the best system? Although I did Antonis take two. My November webinar were sponsored by turn to communications, PR and content For nonprofits, your story is their mission. Turn hyphen two dot c o and by dot drives Prospect to donor simplified tony-dot-M.A.-slash-Pursuant for a free demo and a free month here is had a work in uncertainty. It’s my pleasure to welcome Gail Bauer and Karen Ebert Davis to non profit radio. They are co authors of the study. What’s Really happening with non profit revenue? They’ll. Bauer is founder and president of Bauer and Co. Consulting LLC, a revenue strategy firm that helps nonprofits become self sufficient by developing reliable sources of revenue. Trained as a futurist, she studies where society is headed and what trends may impact her clients. Businesses Gail is author of the book How to Jump Start Your Sponsorship Strategy. In Tough Times, She’s at gale Bauer dot com and at Gale Bauer. Welcome, girl.

[00:03:47.14] spk_2:
Thank you. Hi, tony. Good

[00:03:48.39] spk_0:
to have you back. Thank you. Karen Ybor Davis and her firm, Karen Bieber, Davis Consulting Guide Organizations To discover propulsion tools to grow their profits and performance. She helps clients create dynamic partnerships and make an extraordinary impact. Her book is Let’s raise non profit Million’s Together. She’s at k e d. Consult dot com Karen, welcome to the show.

[00:04:14.26] spk_1:
Thank you, tony. It’s wonderful to be here.

[00:04:16.34] spk_0:
Pleasure. Pleasure. Have you both? Um, whoever wants to start, I don’t know with, uh, introducing the study and and a little about your timing and methodology. Who’s best?

[00:05:11.64] spk_1:
Karen. Go ahead. Sure about March this year we were looking at concerns and issues in the sector. Gail and I have been working together on different projects serving the sector for two years, and we realized that things were happening so rapidly. We didn’t really have a good handle on it, and we couldn’t go to meetings and meet someone and find out what was going on. So we said, Let’s go ask them questions And so we created this survey really curious about what was happening with individual income streams. There was this blatant, um, pictures of information and that things were just shutting down. All income was off and that yet that’s fine. But what was really happening? And from that, we put the survey out asking about individual income streams and what was happening. And the data was not surprising. About 125 people responded, but was fascinating to us, where the comments people made in the questions that were not multiple choices and that’s where we really have been still mining a lot of interesting things when I looked at it again, fresh, there’s new fresh things to see even though this data was collected in June.

[00:05:41.74] spk_0:
Okay? And Gail So I see. Ah, throughput of this is really the uncertainty that people were facing in. Well, you published in June. So I Karen, you said you were surveying what? I guess March, April May. I’m

[00:05:58.25] spk_1:
sorry. We surveyed in June, and then we came out in July.

[00:06:24.14] spk_0:
Okay, I see. So June, still early in the pandemic, Dale. Um, but uncertainty remains. And and now we’ve Now we’ve added the election to the pandemic and economic uncertainty and social justice upheaval. Uh, there’ve been more murders of black folks at the hands of police. So there’s Yeah. Uncertainty.

[00:06:25.31] spk_2:
Yeah, lots of uncertainty. When will there be a vaccine? When can we all get together again, et cetera, And all the other topics and all the, you know, all the details and sub issues of all of those that that still remain in our culture. So, yes, there’s a lot of uncertainty. There’s frankly, always a lot of uncertainty, but right now it’s at a fever pitch and times

[00:06:48.26] spk_0:
times five or six.

[00:08:45.54] spk_2:
Yeah, Exactly. And things were just shifting and changing so rapidly. It is really hard to get a handle on things. So I think one of the big differences between then and now when people completed the study and now is the biggest worry was Oh, my gosh, the pandemic. What does this really mean for us? You know, back in the beginning, you may recall people are thinking and we’ll be out of the office for two weeks and we’ll come right back. Well, now we know it’s gonna be more like a year and a half or so, um, we don’t really know. So now we’ve started to see people sort of settle in and and know that they have to continue operating. They can’t just stop. They have to continue operating, um, in the face of uncertainty. And so we’re starting to see people, you know, really? Take, I I would say one of three pathways count. I’m curious to see what you are seeing. And and tony, I’m sure you have an interesting perspective as well. But I think there are some people that have, uh, strategies from before that still have some merit. They might have had to update them or makes, um, you know, course corrections, but they’re still going strong with what? They’re what they’re doing. Um, some people and I’m talking about, in particular with revenue. Um, some people have had to make wholesale change, for example, organizations that are really dependent on in person revenue, like like concerts and, you know, performances and Gallas and things like that. It’s very difficult to be in in, you know, together and digital works to an extent. And then there are people that are really scrambling to figure out how they’re going to shift their revenue. Ah, lot of times, many of these, maybe your listeners, they run smaller organizations who may not have their footing. Yet they may not have developed repeatable, reliable revenue, which is really one of the hallmarks of being an unsustainable position. And so so this. This is a group that has to be really deliberate and thoughtful about their business model to make sure that they’re being creative. And they’re being thoughtful about the revenue sources that they developed. But they make sure that they understand how their business model functions so they take on the right

[00:09:15.84] spk_0:
forms of revenue. And Karen, I guess these these three sort of cohorts, maybe our sets of of of leaders, uh, emerged from those narrative comments that you were talking about.

[00:10:42.04] spk_1:
Well, we really saw that 0.3 kind of leaders, people who were still in a panic mode like Oh my gosh, and just kind of like whining. And it’s difficult in a survey because you’re taking a survey in any 15 minutes and you might have just had disastrous news. And so a little whining would be natural, appropriate, but the collection of the information and then there was these people who are kind of in this phase. We’re, like, really factual. This is is the tires of my car all flat? What am I going to do to fix it? And then this third group that was moving what we call the solving cells they were already moving into some like, Let’s try this. Let’s try that. So the e think in some ways we’re all we’re all those places, depending on what’s happening, we move through some of that, um, post election. Maybe we thought we were gonna have a plan, and all of a sudden it’s like, Oh, my gosh, how did this happen? Or where we at on Dhe then was like. Okay, now, this is what is what do I do with it? So it’s a begins to be a resilience model. The challenge is, is if you get stuck in any of those places if if you are just, you know, totally in the fax, we can’t operate. We can’t do it. We can’t that that’s a challenge, because you’re not gonna You’re not gonna make it. You’ve got to find some way to try to survive. You may not make it anyway, but trying something that makes logical sense, um is, I think, imperative.

[00:11:07.04] spk_0:
Alright. And that’s ideal for kicking us off with. With the last 25 or 30% of your your study is devoted to what? You know, how do we go forward? What? What’s the value of this info for your organizations? And by the way, let’s shout out where folks can get a copy of the study. Where is that? Karen? Okay, I’ll tell you what. I’m gonna talk to Karen. So, Gail, why don’t you look that up? That’s okay. Yeah, well, we want folks to be able to get this because we waken, uh, take off some of the stuff that I would like most to talk about, but there’s a lot more in the report. So, Karen, um, you the first thing you suggest is taking care of yourself, taking care of your organization. I’ve had other guests say the same thing, but it merits, you know, self care, organizational care. What, your ideas there.

[00:11:43.34] spk_1:
And And I would say part of that self care is recognizing you need more thinking time thinking

[00:11:44.10] spk_0:
is thinking is highly underrated. Yeah, terribly underrated thinking. Thinking is valuable,

[00:12:41.14] spk_1:
amazing and and define the place in time to say I am not gonna put out a fire for the next hour or whatever it takes. And I want to think about what it feels like. Maybe in six months. One of the re reading of some of the data is we were in June. We were so much right now. We were so much in the present. This is happening now and there was no there was no discussion of the election in June. There was no discussion off what the new year would bring, what we’ll be doing in 2021 that was six months away. Not all of us are into the future. But some of us should have been talking about it. So that ability to self care to take some time to think as well as toe recognize no one has been on this path before. No one has the answers. You don’t either. But you know your organization best and prioritize your brilliance about that.

[00:13:17.14] spk_0:
Okay? And organization Care to taking care of those who work with you for you, above you. Below you, you know? E feel like because it z things are so uncertain. Way need to take care of. We do need to take care of each other. You know, we have to go beyond the normal for some nurturing for some listening for some empathy, compassion. I feel I’m doing that. And I feel it in others to, you know, more. More more questions about How are you doing? How are you doing? You know, not just how are you? Like we used to Do you know before March? How you doing? You know, everything’s fine. Yeah, I’m good. Yeah. Yeah, more. I mean, there’s there’s more depth to that and and, you know, and beyond.

[00:13:38.84] spk_1:
Yeah, and in some ways, we have time we’re no longer running. We’re no longer commuting. Most of us are many of us. We are no longer running. Two meetings across town toe have lunch as a networking meeting. That would take three hours our day. And so we’re working more hours. There was an article in the Wall Street Journal this last week mentioning how many more hours people are working and it’s going to work on dhe yet we still have family obligations. So taking care of the people. Your staff, um, is really critical. I’m working with a group of CEOs, and the conversation they wanna have next is how to keep your non profit staff saying in the midst of a pandemic. So how do you help a staff member who has childcare full time at home?

[00:14:32.14] spk_0:
So, yeah, we need to be good to each other and understanding. Empathic compassionate. Yeah. Um, So, Gail, I didn’t mean to be the directive male testosterone burdening. But when I said look this up for you know? So, yeah, you give you homework while I was talking to Karen s. Oh, where can we find this study?

[00:14:36.54] spk_2:
I made a quick, short length. That’s not even that short but tiny u r l dot com forward slash revenue study results

[00:14:44.94] spk_0:
Okay, so it one more time,

[00:14:52.70] spk_2:
I put it in the chat box here to revenue a tiny URL dot com slash revenue study results.

[00:15:31.54] spk_0:
It’s time for a break. Turn to communications. They help you build relationships with journalists because of our relationship started and nurtured by turn to the New York community. Trust got to features in The Wall Street Journal. That’s the value of the pre existing relationships Turn to specializes in working with nonprofits. One of the partners, Peter Pan, a Pento, used to be an editor at The Chronicle of Philanthropy. The return hyphen two dot ceo Now back to how to work in uncertainty You’re you have ideas about revamping strategy.

[00:18:47.54] spk_2:
Yeah, well, so as I was starting to say, with with your business model, a lot of organizations are continuing with revenue forms that they had in this study. We found, um, interestingly, some conflicting information. Whereas some respondents found that individual giving was decreased, uh, or they expected it to decrease over time. Another group found that that was their shining light, that it was the form of revenue that was going to increase eso, you know? So I guess it’s sort of just depends where people are in their life cycles and where they are in their strategies and so on and so forth. But one of the hallmark mindsets that we saw that came from this are, as Karen said, the ones who had moved along the scale of resilience and who were taking a very positive mindset. Who were they believed all out in their mission and in their abilities to get the word out about their mission and all the, you know, all the good work that their organizations were doing and to think really creatively about how to move forward. And so, in thinking about a new organizations business model A Z, I mentioned earlier organizations need to be thinking about what forms of revenue have the most staying power now. And how might they want to expand the revenue? What other you know, are there other sources that could be coming into the fold? But they have to do it again very thoughtfully for, uh, for how the organization works. So a business model is not just revenue that comes in and expenses that go out. That’s a budget. Ah, business model is actually the system about how you know how the business side of your organization actually operates. So, for example, um, corporate sponsorship is a big piece of my expertise, and people call me all the time with questions about sponsorship and getting some help with that. And I’m always listening for the right conditions that are going to help them create success. And I try to guide people when I’m hearing conditions that won’t be successful. So, for example, every business model has some key activities key relationships that are important for success. Sponsorship, for example, requires an active marketing operation, a strategy, a set of operations, an audience to be successful. It requires staff and organizational competence, because if you don’t have anyone that can actually go out and talk to a corporation and you know, initiate relationships to develop them, then you know you’re not gonna have success there. And so it sounds like a pretty obvious peace. But, uh, you know, organizations are under a lot of pressure from the board members. Let’s try this. Let’s try that Somebody that I spoke to recently said Oh, well, you know, our board member thinks we oughta have sponsorship. And when we talked further, three organization doesn’t really have a marketing push. Uh, it’s maybe not even appropriate that they would have a consumer market being pushed. They certainly don’t have events that would be viable. Sources of revenue and the work that they do. It was very intimate, very personal. And so I just said to her, I’m not really sure that sponsorship is the right fit for you. She was relieved. She was relieved to hear that, because now her brain is freed up and she can focus on revenue sources that are gonna be the right fit. So we are all four. And Karen, I’m sure you would echo this. We’re all for people being creative. But don’t spend your wheels on creativity where you know, you have roadblocks right in front of you. So you have to really make sure that your business model is the right fit for any form of revenue that you’re gonna pursue

[00:19:22.57] spk_0:
anything you wanna add. Thio?

[00:19:26.94] spk_1:
Yeah. Tell on opposite story. Because because it really depends on who you are and what kind of value you could bring to the market. So looking for your revenue in terms of what is our value, how can we bring it? Who needs that value? One of the woman people I work with, who is the CEO? They had been doing a lot of educational events, and we see the little bit of sponsorship well, their their revenue for those has just gone up tremendously. They recognize that the rate is a medical related thing. That the doctors who people who are promoting different health cures and their industry could no longer reach patients directly except through them. And so their ability to capitalize on that restriction inside of doctors offices like payday for them on dhe, they’ve taken advantage of it. So what may not be your neighbor friends? Non profit solution may indeed be your solution, and that’s matching that value that you have. And now maybe you can see new value with the value of what people are seeking and making those connections.

[00:20:32.10] spk_2:
That’s a good point, I think, to some of the other issues that you mentioned tony. So the racial justice issues, for example, that’s another, uh, that’s another, uh, point of leverage because obviously many nonprofit organizations are really devoted to racial justice issues, you know? Well, even before the incidents, the death of George Floyd this summer and, um, organizations that may not have had that as strongly on the radar certainly are more interested in that now. And that is a point of overlap with the corporate sector. We’re all saying that this is a really important issue. So there may be opportunities to have work funded or to expand audiences in the and in the, you know, in the colors of community. Ah, commune communities of color. Eso that people more people are being attracted to these missions and corporate sponsors. Sponsors can benefit from that as well, and can help, you know, joined the cause

[00:21:51.24] spk_0:
again. Let’s stay with you for your next idea is just basically keep. Just keep asking. Uh, including for for requests, planned gifts, But keep on asking your folks for for support,

[00:21:53.04] spk_2:
right? So, yeah, I mean, Mawr and more organizations are, you know, communicating with donors and communicating with supporters throughout the year. And, um, you know, there there has to be ah, lot of emotional mo mentum without causing donor fatigue at the same time. So these regular opportunities to be in touch with donors and to be, um, you know, engaging them in the mission, engaging them emotionally. And what’s happening, um, is what’s gonna really help bring that donor to the fold? An

[00:22:30.45] spk_0:
individual individual generosity was something that you highlight in the in. Early reports of the survey, as as a shining moment, are shining experience for a lot of non profits that their donors have come through for them. But of course, you got to keep asking so that give them the opportunity to come through for you.

[00:23:59.24] spk_2:
Yeah, I think a lot of ah lot of organizations in the beginning, uh, sort of panicked, not seeing where their mission fit in the big scheme of the pandemic on I know, I had several conversations like this with executive directors and leaders and the nonprofit sector that, you know, we need organizations of all stripes. Right now, we still need the full panoply, the full infrastructure of non profit service’s to help, you know, continue making our society better because, you know, there is such a ripple effect from all of these issues, from racial injustice from the pandemic and, you know, health care disparities and so on and so forth. So we need all the non profit infrastructure justice importantly and therefore non profits have an opportunity to really update and update their messaging update the ways that they’re talking about some of these really topical issues and how their cause their mission is to attack or solve a certain portion of it and keep their organization in the spotlight. So it’s really important for this regular communication at the same time, while acknowledging that some people may not have the means to give at this time because, you know, we do have a you know, a problem with the recession. At the same time,

[00:24:07.81] spk_0:
you need to be understanding but still straightforward about what your needs are. Yeah, not not humble about it. Yeah, Karen, let’s go back to you for looking at risks. Uh, this it’s It’s sort of running through what we’ve been talking about a little bit, but just make it explicit, you know, looking at risks to potential revenue.

[00:24:27.44] spk_1:
Absolutely. I think everyone woke up and realized that their earned revenue wasn’t a sure thing was it was one of the first biggest learnings. Um, but they’re also going back to the donors that that donors were like the heroes of this because they showed you people loved you. Um, one of the useful things your listeners conduce oh, is to write down all the things that are worrying them and look at the ones that they really can control. Um, you know, they cannot control um, when we get the vaccine. I don’t think unless they’re variant vaccines on dhe, they can control a lot of things they can’t control when it will really be there. Special. Most favorite people will come out and come to their meetings again. We don’t know, but they can control how often they talked to those donors and what they offer them bring them and share and how they provide that value. So getting out and saying, My gosh, this whole list of things, it’s like, Oh, my gosh, it’s so scary. Well, a number of those you can’t do anything about, but the ones that you can are the ones you can focus on and and and getting real clear where you have leverage with your time and energy and effort, and then really, in terms of your revenue.

[00:25:31.54] spk_0:
Now, that’s excellent. You know, Look, focus on what you can control and, you know, obsessed privately about that which you can’t. But you’re you’re non profit. Needs not to be going down the path of, you know, What are we gonna do about when the vaccine comes out? You know, our Yeah, exactly. Exactly. All right. Um, let’s stay with you for a digital You. I think a lot of non profit have already figured out some of this, but there’s There may be more work to be done around enhancing your digital, um presents skills.

[00:26:04.74] spk_1:
Yeah. Yeah. Digital is gonna be with us. We are not going back. You know, I just don’t think every board’s gonna ever meet every time at once a month in person again, I think we’re gonna have selective. So we’re gonna have a hybrid world. And so we all need to have some growth in digital skills. And it’s well worth watching the zoom videos and getting getting up to date on those and getting some skills because you need to figure out how to do breakout rooms and poles and all those things. But that aside, digital is becoming one of the heroes of this experience to people are having events that were for their local people who could come in for the evening and comfort event. And all of a sudden, the people who are coming to events, it’s much larger in his national or statewide. And who knew that I was doing in Miami biz? Um, conference last week? And we have people from all over the state of Florida, and I’m thinking, Oh, it’s not Miami biz anymore. It’s statewide, And what does that mean? And who are you? And if you’re really good at digital, maybe that’s your revenue opportunity.

[00:27:06.74] spk_0:
Yeah, your events are no longer constrained by where you’re gonna host, huh? Where you’re going to rent a hotel ballroom or or by where your offices

[00:27:15.44] spk_1:
and your ticket prices might be very different.

[00:27:21.89] spk_0:
Yes, right, right. All right, Gail. Anything you want to add? Thio Digital Digital presence.

[00:27:39.49] spk_2:
Well, I just think that helping people focus on expanding their capabilities. Uh, and seeing you know, people may feel flummoxed about digital skills. Uh, e think I

[00:27:41.23] spk_1:
think you

[00:27:41.57] spk_4:
have been

[00:27:41.84] spk_2:
out to two ways e Karen around Karen. And

[00:27:46.75] spk_0:
don’t just pick your co authors. Pronunciation. Karen, you talk breaker.

[00:27:50.40] spk_1:
I know what she met.

[00:28:09.07] spk_0:
Okay, Perfect. Middle of the road. All right, I get about what part of the country are you in? Maybe that Z in Philadelphia. I’m from New York, New Jersey. I mean, I live in North Carolina now, but now, so that’s not the explanation. Yeah.

[00:28:09.77] spk_2:
Anyway, yeah, So people might be stumped about about gaining digital skills, But But if people could start to see that as an opportunity, I’m really an optimistic person. So trying to see some of these new changes in our world as positive as you know, new ways to communicate with people and that there are, you know, so many people figuring these technical, you know, technical skills out or these thes new capabilities out. So the goal might be, um, learning how to have new capabilities for the organization and continuing to expand resilience so that when you emerge from this period, whatever it is, however long it is, you’re stronger in that you have new capabilities. You’ve learned new ways to hold events or you learned new ways to market to people. I’m working with a client, right? now on really subsea financially expanding the way that they attract new people to the organization using all kinds of digital skills. And it’s really been fun. It builds on things that I already knew how to dio that they were sort of new to. But we’re all learning new things together about how toe how toe communicate with people when we can’t see them with limited budgets so that their organization can continue to grow The same organization also, um, expand. Like many organizations turned their in person event into a virtual one wants to have their virtual event in person next year. But they thought that there’s so much value about their virtual event that they’re going t o continue doing it. But for a very specific audience that may have less access to the in person one because of costs And

[00:29:56.41] spk_0:
probably so they have a digital component with camera camera, too, and live streaming

[00:30:02.64] spk_2:
exactly, exactly and and all kinds of other capabilities. So so it really you know, while this might be a difficult time and they’re all exhausted and they’re working so hard and doing so much, but by the time and there’s some other changes that we made digitally to that that we just realized. Yes, you’re like, Oh, my gosh, We’re gonna have all this new data. So? So making these commitments and these steps and he’s taking these actions now is gonna pay off later. So it’s, you know, we’re all slogging through and trying to find moments of joy through through this, you know, challenging time for everybody, but hopefully will all emerge stronger and with new capabilities and more resilient in the long run. And that’s the That’s the eye on the prize right now.

[00:30:48.84] spk_0:
Okay? No, Gale, you’re trained, is a futurist, and we’re recording on Wednesday, November 4th. So who’s gonna win the election?

[00:30:57.29] spk_2:
Futurist? The first thing futures learn is you don’t make predictions, okay? Yeah, exactly, But we

[00:31:06.02] spk_0:
already within the next. It’ll

[00:31:07.40] spk_1:
be a white male. What

[00:31:10.38] spk_0:
do you say?

[00:31:10.70] spk_1:
Yeah, it will be a white male

[00:31:12.43] spk_0:
male. Yeah,

[00:31:13.18] spk_2:
in their seventies. Yeah, hopefully

[00:31:18.24] spk_0:
the vice president will not be, um eso eso futurist. You don’t want to touch like the next 18 months. You have to go 18 months and out. Is that Is that like you have a boundary beyond within which you will not. Well, some some awareness or understanding off.

[00:31:36.84] spk_2:
Yeah, different futures focus on different time horizons. There’s some some futures that focus really long term. So, for example, there are colleagues of mine that might focus 10 50 years out and might advice, for example, depart Ah, highway department in a state that has a growing population so that they can figure out where to put highways. My focus tends to be shorter term because that’s what nonprofits really need help with eso the advice this week. Yeah, not this week. Yeah, look a little bit longer the next couple of years. Just take a look at all the all the trends that are happening and the impact of those trends. And, um and again, as Karen said, spend some time thinking, see what this might mean for yourselves and don’t get hung up about any one way or the other because the future hasn’t happened yet. Eso we wanna be thinking about all the possible futures and carve out your path where you want to go. But always stay alert. Toe all of these different trends and resilient Yeah, and be willing. Thio shift on a dime when you learn more information so that you are prepared for any threats and you have the opportunity to seize opportunities and you don’t get, you know, you don’t get caught under a nen coming wave that you hadn’t thought about. It just helps us some more creative and more resilient and more agile as we’re going through this.

[00:33:21.14] spk_0:
And you know that that sounds like a, you know, a lead into the to our sixth idea, which is considering new markets, new audiences. Um, So I’m gonna turn to Karen too. Sort of Take us out. And, uh

[00:34:04.23] spk_1:
Okay, So So it’s we kind of have referred to it in this conversation. People finding new ways. Andi, I think this is the crux of what the message is is what worked in January. Probably is never gonna work quite the same way again. And in some ways, that’s a good thing on and one of the people I work with, I am not going back. I’m not doing some of those things, so it’s an opportunity to shed some things on, then make room for the new possibilities. Who needs your value? Where can it be provided? How can you communicate that that that you have this value and that they should really invest in you to get it is really the the hub of finding new places.

[00:34:36.74] spk_0:
All right, that’s Karen Ibra Davis. She’s at K e d. Consult dot com and co author of the study. What’s really happening with non profit revenue is Gail Bauer, who remains a, uh, flummoxed futurist. She’s at gale Bauer dot com and at Gale Bauer study again is at tiny u r l dot com slash revenue Study results. Karen Gayle Thank you very very much for sharing.

[00:34:39.34] spk_2:
Thank you so much, tony.

[00:34:40.67] spk_1:
It’s been a pleasure.

[00:34:50.22] spk_0:
It’s time for a break. Tony is take two my webinar. I’m hosting a free webinar. Start your plan to giving in 2021. Yes, I’m hosting Kind

[00:34:55.08] spk_1:
of

[00:36:55.95] spk_0:
nice hosting my own, No longer subjugated to the will of the outside hosts. Know which I’m Of course, I’m always grateful for I get so many invitations, I don’t have time to host my own. But so at this time I’m hosting my own webinar. No, no more subjugation. Uh, it’s a quick shot. We’re gonna do this in 50 minutes. What plan giving is how to identify your best prospects, where to start your plan giving program, how to market your new program. And, of course, I’m gonna leave plenty of time for questions, which is my favorite. I enjoy the questions a lot, so I hope you’ll ask a lot. We’re doing this quick shot on November 19th. Thursday Thursday, November 19th at three O’clock Eastern. You can sign up for the Free Webinar at planned giving accelerator dot com slash webinar. That number again planned giving accelerator dot com slash webinar. I hope you’ll be with me posting my own, that is tony. Stick to now. It’s time for low cost fundraising software guide I’m pleased to welcome the co authors of Tech Impacts. Consumers Guide to Low Cost Fundraising software. Amid the Heart is a contract writer and researcher for Tech Impacts, Ideal Wear and president of Heart Strategic Marketing. She has a wide range of experience helping nonprofits assess their needs, select software to meet them and engage audiences and constituents. She’s at comedy Am a D. I. E. Chris Bernard is managing editor at Tech Impact. He’s a career writer and journalist with 20 years experience in newspapers, magazines, advertising, corporate and nonprofit marketing and communications and freelance writing. Tech Impact is at Tech Impact dot or GE. Comedy Chris Welcome to non profit radio. It’s good to have you.

[00:36:59.23] spk_3:
Thank you for having us, tony.

[00:37:02.73] spk_0:
Absolute pleasure. Chris. Let’s start with you. Please acquaint our listeners with Tech Impact.

[00:37:45.90] spk_4:
Sure, tech impact is a national non profit. We offer a variety of programs, and service is to other nonprofits everything from tech consulting software selection. Managed service is to our workforce development programs in Delaware, Philadelphia in Las Vegas, where we offer all sorts of educational opportunities for young people. We also have, since 2000 and 18, when we merged with Ideal, where we have an arm of the non profit that produces all sorts of publications and training for nonprofits around the country, most of them free of charge, including this. This publication we’re talking about today

[00:38:17.96] spk_0:
Now I used to refer toa ideal wear when I had Karen Graham on, she was the CEO of idea where, as the consumer reports of non profit software and she bristled a little bit, not really. You know, Karen didn’t get upset. I don’t know if she ever gets upset. She didn’t get upset at me. She bristled a little bit like a little pushback. Well, not quite. Uh, do you? Do you object to that? Do you bristle it? That that explains that whatever description of idea where

[00:38:20.51] spk_4:
you have been with ideal where since 2000 and six. Tony and we that is certainly accurate for one part of what we do. I think if anybody would argue that point, it’s only that we do so much more than just software reviews.

[00:38:35.22] spk_0:
Okay, Okay, Fair enough. Alright. I’m sure Karen explain that to me too. But because she bristled, I have to bring it up. So? So let’s let’s let’s dive into the title. So we know what folks are gonna be looking at and what they should be expecting. So how do you define low cost?

[00:38:54.22] spk_3:
Well, that’s one of the things that we did. Well, we first embarked upon the report over the years, we’ve always had fairly standard methodology for how we go about the report. And one of the factors that we do with the very beginning is decide. Okay, what is blow cost in today’s market? So in today’s market. We were talking with subject matter experts who represented people who work in non profits and work with the technology, as well as consultants who help nonprofits with their technology and decided that for this version of the report, $10,000 for a year’s worth of software is about the ceiling that we could have.

[00:39:38.12] spk_0:
Okay. And how about fundraising? How do you define fundraising versus C. R. M or donor management? Because this used to be called the guide. The low cost donor management software. Yes, we actually

[00:41:08.31] spk_3:
had a lot of conversations about that. Um, with all the systems that we have in here really run the gamut, some of them do call themselves C R M. Some of them do call themselves donor management systems, and some call themselves fundraising systems. And so we do set aside part of the report to talk about what we mean by each one. Um, so for the systems that were in the report, we needed them or to, um, really be the sole database for a non profit or have the ability to be the sole database for a non profit, um, and then let them do things like create online forms, a variety of online forms. Let them, um, creating collect data from email marketing campaigns. We did require systems in the report to be cloud based, and we also did require them to be able to, um, process online payments either natively or through an integration. Um, we needed them to be able to track fundraising metrics on the dashboard, um, and manage a report on both online on direct mail fundraising campaigns. So it’s a sort of, ah, lot mawr expensive than the systems that we looked at in previous versions of this report. Because in many ways, the work the nonprofits of I was doing in this area have really expanded a lot. And they’ve required systems and technology to keep up

[00:41:35.41] spk_0:
with that. You have 10 different functionalities that you measured. You measure all the system against I know, um, and that folks is just gonna have to get the guide. Obviously, we’re not gonna take off all 10 functionalities. Um, Chris, I’m guessing, uh, the following is not the right question to ask. What’s the best system? Uh huh. We try 5.5 minutes. We could just wrap it up. What thing You don’t Nobody has to read the guide.

[00:41:44.51] spk_4:
This is the fifth edition of the guide. And one thing that has not changed throughout the course of each generation is that we make a ZX clear as possible that there is no best system. This is not about ranking the systems against one another. It’s about teaching nonprofits what systems offer and how to compare them and how to select the best one for their needs. Because ultimately that is the best system. It’s going to depend on your specific needs,

[00:42:16.10] spk_0:
and you have very conveniently, I think, a dozen different use cases so that you can try to fit your needs into maybe one of those use cases, or maybe overlap a little bit like tiny but growing and prices critical midsize and want a system that grows with us. Meet easy, set up and use. No. And you have a dozen of those different use cases,

[00:42:50.50] spk_4:
right? That was one of the, uh, the features that comedy brought to this edition of the guide, where we’re always looking for ways to make it easier for the nonprofits in our audience to access the knowledge that’s in it. It’s a massive undertaking to put together, but it’s also a massive undertaking to read. Yeah, comparing that many systems against hundreds of requirements, criteria just results in a lot of data. And how do you make that data useful? So looking for sort of entry points for nonprofits, Ahmedi came up with the idea of coming up with use cases that were common to nonprofits in our audience demographic to help them understand how other nonprofits reusing the system, find the use case. That sort of matched in a reasonable sense what they were doing. And then that’s that’s sort of a starting point for them. Thio begin Narrowing Systems

[00:43:30.49] spk_0:
The comedy. This is the first guy that you participated with?

[00:43:35.31] spk_3:
No, actually, I did work on. I did several of the software evaluations from the previous version of this guide, and I can’t take full credit for the use cases and that we had a smaller, um, or more limited version of use cases in the last edition of the guide that helped, uh, divide up some of the systems or sort them into categories. But what we heard from people in the intervening years was That was one of the first things that they turned to in the last edition of the guide when they were trying to get their hands around what systems toe look at because they didn’t feel like reading all of the profiles. So realizing that that waas, um, the most useful entry point for non profits made it much more, um, it made it much more attractive as

[00:44:31.09] spk_0:
e made it more accessible. Yes. You know, these are the 44 or five systems that will suit best. This, uh, this use case, you know, And like I said, you know, times 12. So whoever is best for this, how do you think non profit could best use the guide, like Or maybe maybe what do we have? What we have to know in advance before we can get the most out of the out of the guide.

[00:45:02.59] spk_4:
I’m gonna let Ahmedi field that question, but I just wanna close the use case conversation by pointing out that not all the systems eso we picked systems to match each of the use cases, but depending on each organization, specific needs other systems that we didn’t choose for a particular use case might still be perfectly valid system for that use case, and it really comes down to specific needs. We just can’t drive home enough that this is the beginning of the conversation. And it should not replace due diligence on the part of the non problems themselves.

[00:46:49.68] spk_0:
Okay, Okay. You know what? I’m ready before we before we take on that. How best? Use it. Well, but I feel like we should just I just wanna take off a bunch of the I can’t mention them. I can’t name them all, But just so folks get an idea of what what products we’re talking about I just wanna I’m gonna sample from the table of contents. So black black Bart Boomerang e tapestry Every action Kila little green light nation builder Network for good Neon C r M salesforce salsa virtuous. Okay, so I just So people get an idea What? Just have some sense of what the universe is like that we’re talking in the abstract about time for our last break dot drives dot drives engagement dot drives relationships. Dot drives is thes simplest donor pipeline fundraising tool. They have made it customizable, collaborative, intuitive. If you want to move the needle on your prospect and donor relationships. If you want to get folks from prospect to donor, get the free demo for listeners. There’s also a free month. It’s at the listener landing page. Tony dot Emma slash dot We’ve got but loads more time for low cost fundraising software guide. So how should we? How can we best use this thing? What? This This thing, this guide, it took you like, 20 minutes. You know you thing, it’s like, uh, less time than this interview is. This conversation is the guy’s done? No. This, uh, in depth guide. What should we have in place or what should we be thinking about? Like before we take it on?

[00:47:09.26] spk_4:
Well, I think it

[00:47:52.08] spk_3:
follows along really much of the best practices in choosing any software system, not just, um, donor management or fundraising or C r. M. And the first thing that you dio is have do a lot of work internally about what it is that you do now, um, and what it is that you’re going to be doing in the future, Like what your goals are for fundraising and how the software can possibly help you meet those goals. So once you go in there, we have a full section that actually goes through the 10 different types of functionality that we review in the guide and talks about different questions that nonprofits can ask about things that they do. Um, that how it how it fits into, um, their work and so they can use that section to decide what it is that are the most important functions that a software package would do to meet the goals that they have, um, selected both presently and for the future. And then from there, they can prioritize that and then use those, um, prioritize functions to take a look at which systems do well in those functions. Which systems offer those functions? So while we have sort of the high level look at it in the in the pdf version of the report, the online version of the report actually goes into depth on every single function that is below the is part of the 10, um, divisions that we have so that self so that nonprofits can really look at the details and figure out which systems do exactly what and whether or not, it meets their needs.

[00:49:09.07] spk_0:
So the guide is that guides dot tech impact dot or ge slash forward slash donor hyphen management, hyphen systems and Chris. There’s much more than a PdF there. I mean, there’s certainly there’s a pdf version of the guide could go through that, but there’s a lot more on that site. A lot more robustness. Talk about what? What folks will find it that u R L

[00:49:58.27] spk_4:
Yeah, sure, we, as I mentioned before, this is the fifth edition of this guide, but we have probably put out more than two dozen consumers guides on different topics over the years, and it had long been a dream of ours. That idea where to make it even more useful to our audience with a digital version of the site that could be interactive that offered searchable sort herbal charts toe make it more user friendly to compare systems on. This is the first guy that we’ve been able to offer that, uh, digital site, which so it’s kind of a micro site version of the report, and we are adding functionality to it on a rolling basis as we’re able to so in the next week or two. We’re hopeful that we’ll be able to announce, um, added functionality to the comparison charts that let people just highlight which systems they want to compare in, which features they’d like to compare them against so that that’s coming.

[00:50:16.86] spk_0:
That’s just like consumer reports, just like you could do Sorry camera. You could do a head to head comparison or compared two or three on the criteria. The functionalities that are most important to you,

[00:50:28.35] spk_4:
right? And we have the common mission with consumer reports of educating people about purchases because this is a big, big purchase for nonprofits and thio that same point because there’s so much information in this report, and yet there’s still so much information we don’t cover. We’re also offering a companion training Siri’s, where one of our expert trainers is conducting live demos of 12 systems from this guide, and thanks to the generosity of Fidelity Charitable Trust, we’ve been able to make that Frito anybody who signs up while that Siri’s is already underway. All those demos are being recorded, so anybody who goes to the tech impact website and signs up for that training can have for free access to live demos or recorded demos of the 12 systems from this report.

[00:51:19.61] spk_0:
How did you pick those 12 question? Well, there are 12 use cases. I wow already know the answer, but I’m asking you,

[00:51:56.16] spk_4:
I’m gonna let Omni speak to this one in more detail. But we chose 12 systems toe line up with the use cases, not because they are the best systems, but because the it would be a little bit too much of a lift for us to do the detailed long reviews of every system out there. So we chose 12 that Air Representative off what systems can do in terms of meeting the needs of organizations for each of those use cases. How many do you want to add to that expound on that or clarify that?

[00:51:59.19] spk_1:
Yeah. So overall, we have 20

[00:52:01.16] spk_3:
three systems in the report on dhe. 12 of them, as Chris just said, were chosen to represent the 12 East cases that we have to select the ones from the use case. It wasn’t again the best system. Um, but it was a system that was highly representative off what you can do in a good portion of the use case. So, for example, the use case that we have for organizations that do a lot of, uh events is that we took a look at the ones that had strong events packages. Um, you know, uh, most of the systems that we looked at had either, uh, native or integration to be able to do some work on events. But there are some that really provide ah, lot of features around events. And so those were the ones that were in there and the ones that the one that we chose to represent the events category, um was, you know, a really good representative of that in a good representative. Overall,

[00:53:04.06] spk_4:
we get a lot of emails from people saying we’re looking at two systems. Neither of them are in your list of 12. What’s wrong with our systems? And we wanna We wanna make it clear that all the systems in this report are excellent systems. They all have different strengths and weaknesses, and that’s what’s going to guide people’s decisions. There are other systems that didn’t make it in this report. They’re also excellent.

[00:53:29.82] spk_0:
You say that you say that explicitly the report. Yeah, but they just didn’t meet your criteria for evaluation. Right?

[00:53:50.25] spk_4:
And people can read about the methodology by which we the methodology we used to find systems and how we narrow the list down on. We’re happy to answer questions by email, but it’s an important note that just because it’s not one of the 12 that we chose is representative To meet those use systems does not mean it’s not a good system, and that should not be a deciding factor. This is just an effort to educate people toe, help them start making decisions about what’s right for them.

[00:54:05.24] spk_0:
And Chris, those 12 videos are at the site that I read.

[00:54:27.94] spk_4:
Uh, no, I will put a link up there. But if you go to Tech Impact dot or GE and look at our training calendar, you confined that training on. Sign up for that and we will send you a link to all the different recordings that we’ve already done. A ZX well, Azaz, uh, invitation for the upcoming ones that have not happened yet. Okay, Okay. In fact, I’ll send you a link. You can post it on your page with this recording, if you like.

[00:54:39.54] spk_0:
Okay. Yeah, Thank you. I will. Um What else? We still got a few minutes left together. What else? You want folks to know about the guide? You’re unwilling to answer the question? What’s the best system? So that’s off the tape. That one’s off the table? Uh, no. What else would you like to know? What else would you like folks to know about the guide?

[00:54:48.74] spk_4:
I think you hit on a key point, which is that this used to be the consumer’s guide to low cost donor management systems on. For a lot of people who are familiar with that report, which has been out five times in the past, they may not realize that this is the same one because of the title change. So I just want to assure people that this is the same report. We’re just changing the title to be more in line with how the vendors and subject matter experts and users, a ZX well are talking about these systems.

[00:55:19.14] spk_3:
I also wanted to point out that it’s not the guide. While the primary focus of the guide are the reviews of the systems and the profiles that air in there, one of the things that we do put in there is. We take a look at trends and we take a look at how the marketplace has changed. And we do provide, uh, some advice for nonprofits who are in the process of selecting a system about, you know, some of the things that they should be looking out for and some of the things they should be thinking about. So I know it’s a long report. I wrote a lot of words, but that there are some good things in the front of the book material, so to speak, that can help sort of position the systems within the marketplace is the whole

[00:56:06.83] spk_4:
report of this size is a massive effort on. It can’t be done without the participate participation of a lot of people subject matter experts, consultants, but also the vendors themselves who are generous with their time for the demos and the fact checking on. We also couldn’t do it without the generosity of our sponsors. Which brings me to the point that we should talk just quickly about our editorial firewall. People will notice that some of our sponsors are also vendors of systems, but those of us who put the report together don’t know who the sponsors of the report are. That’s handled by Karen Graham in a different part of the building entirely. And we’re not aware of who the sponsors are until publication day. So one has no input with no impact on the other whatsoever.

[00:56:56.53] spk_0:
Do the sponsors know whether their system is going to be part of the guide?

[00:57:20.43] spk_4:
Not when they not not at the time of sponsorship. We have to reach out to them at some point when they become of, you know, when their system is selected, because they have to do the demos and everything. But there are Obviously it’s a limited constellation of vendors out there. All right, it’s tough to fund this kind of work, were grateful for the generosity of all our sponsors and advertisers who make it possible. But we have a pretty rigorous editorial firewall up to prevent any kind of impact from the sponsorship on inclusion in the report.

[00:57:56.03] spk_0:
Okay, we trust Karen Graham. She bristled, but you admonished me, could even go so far to say admonished, Um okay, should we, uh, I’m gonna read the u R l one more time Should we should we leave it there and encourage folks? Thio. Encourage

[00:57:56.70] spk_4:
them to sign up for the free training to see the demos. And if people do need additional help choosing software, if this is still too much of a lift for people to do on their own, which is valid considering the importance of a decision like this, that is something Tech Impact can help with. They can find that on the website as well.

[00:59:40.72] spk_0:
Assistance Assistance with selection. Yeah, okay, again the guide and the site that Chris described. Guides dot tech impact dot or GE forward slash donor Hyphen management Hyphen systems. How many Heart is a contract writer and researcher? Her company is heart strategic marketing, and Chris Bernard is managing editor at Tech Impact. Take impact dot or ge a median. Chris, Thank you so much. Thanks very much, Thank you. Appreciate it. Next week, A special episode. Adult learning with Nico Chin. If you missed any part of today’s show, I beseech you, find it at tony-martignetti dot com. Beseeches still good, but I am really liking abdominal abdominal May overtake Beseech I’m not sure were sponsored by turn to communications, PR and content for nonprofits, your story is their mission. Turn hyphen two dot ceo and by dot drives Prospect to donor simplified tony-dot-M.A.-slash-Pursuant for a free month and a free demo. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff shows Social Media is by Susan Chavez. Mark Silverman is our Web guy, and this music is by Scott Stein. Thank you for that affirmation. Scotty, be with me next week for non profit radio. Big non profit ideas for the other 95% go out and be great.

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