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Nonprofit Radio for May 13, 2024: Experiential Fundraising


Brittan StockertExperiential Fundraising

Let’s take lessons from the experience economy to create meaningful, memorable experiences for your donors. Brittan Stockert, from Donorbox, walks us through her thinking on events, membership programs, challenges, sponsorships, and more.


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Welcome to Tony Martignetti nonprofit Radio. Big nonprofit ideas for the other 95%. I’m your aptly named host and the pod father of your favorite Hebdomadal podcast. This is show number 690. That means we are 10 weeks to our 7/100 show and 14th anniversary as a podcast. Cool. Oh, I’m glad you’re with us. I’d be hit with whipple disease if you fed me the idea that you missed this week’s show. Here’s our associate producer, Kate with what’s coming? Hey, Tony, this week we have experiential fundraising. Let’s take lessons from the experienced economy to create meaningful memorable experiences for your donors. Britain Stockert from donor box, walks us through her thinking on events, membership programs, challenges, sponsorships and more on Tonys. Take two sad neediness were sponsored by virtuous, virtuous, gives you the nonprofit CRM fundraising volunteer and the marketing tools. You need to create more responsive donor experiences and grow, giving, virtuous.org and by donor box, outdated donation forms blocking your supporters, generosity, donor box, fast, flexible and friendly fundraising forms for your nonprofit donor. Box.org. Gosh, I love that alliteration. Here is experiential fundraising. I’m with Britain Stockert. Britain is the fundraiser strategist at Donor box. She has over 15 years experience in organizational development, fundraising and program development spanning nonprofits, social enterprises and NGO S. You’ll find Britain on linkedin and the company is at donor box.org Britain. Welcome to nonprofit radio. Hey, thanks so much, Tony. Very great to be here. Oh, my pleasure to have you. Experiential fundraising. Let’s jump in. What, what is this experiential fundraising thing? Yes, let’s do it. Right. Um I’m gonna throw out the bad news first. The doom and gloom. That’s how I roll. We’re, we’re no strangers to fundraisers, right? Um We know the data out there charitable giving, right? It’s hit a four decade low giving. Tuesday saw 10% drop. Donor trust is kind of on the decline. And, you know, in February, the chronicle of philanthropy talked about this crisis, right? A lot of nonprofit executives are jumping shift from the sector when demand is extremely high and they’re trying to find better work life balance, um, and consulting roles. So we have all of these kind of macro level crises, right? And in the midst of everything. Um, we also know, you know, we were hoping during the pandemic that we would take some of those tidbits of slowing down and baking bread and being more intentional and everything we’re doing. But we’re not seeing that at all. Right. And we’re seeing this in terms of fundraising, donors are being pulled from every which way from different nonprofits. And that’s kind of where we’re at. We’re, we’re witnessing a shift Tony um in terms of how we fundraise. And I know you’ve been in plan giving, Tony, we’ve relied so hard on all of these very usual fundraising tactics, right? You’re in giving campaign, all of these in person events. And we need to step back, we need to really be asking like, are these kind of one time fragmented tactics we’re using, are they really engaging our donors? Are we capturing their attention? And so that’s kind of where experiential fundraising comes into play. Many fundraisers know it as relation, relational fundraising, completely, not a new concept, right? We’ve been doing relationship building for decades, but in kind of this hustle of this fast paced paced moving society, we’ve completely lost sight of slowing down and really building forging those deeper connections with our donors. And so it’s all about kind of just re embracing this mindset of relationship building, engaging the five senses of our donors and setting aside aside these usual fundraising tactics that we do to be more intentional and, and how we build those relationships. So you’re looking for, you know, meaningful memorable experiences and not necessarily around events. Right. Right. It’s, it’s all of the things that, you know, we get so caught up in the scramble of sending out those mass email blasts, right? Or those generic appeals or the annual galas and live auctions. It’s really kind of shifting to those multiple touch points that happen all of the in between and these are in between things about um in getting past barriers and that, that might be, that might look very different to different nonprofits. It might be a community uh focused group, it might be a neighborhood block party. Um But it’s all of these multiple touch points that really kind of engage those five senses of our, of our supporters and really get them to buy into what we do. OK. So how do we create these uh memorable, you know, remarkable meaningful experiences? I know the uh on, on your blog, there are seven different categories or events, competitions, et cetera. Do you wanna talk through those? Well, let’s for the sake of time. Tony, let’s keep, let’s reduce it to three things, right? And again, these aren’t rocket science or whatever, but they’re built on three principles. One of those is a shared journey, right? So again, I’m talking about being intentional and thoughtful traditional fundraising. We send out a generic appeal letter. It’s not personalized. We’re just thankful, we got it out, right? We got it out on time. We did it, what a shared journey looks like is, you know, instead of an in person event or a gala, it might be an event um where we segment it, we, we look at our data and we look at our supporters within our specific neighborhood and we create a segment where they’re all providing feedback in terms of the programs that we do. Um It’s, it’s inclusive, it’s very community centric. So it really shifts from sending out mass emails that are not personalized to individual donors and moving to these creative really informal events that happen regularly where we’re creating space where our supporters are, our supporters, not just include donors, right? It’s very inclusive. It’s including our bene bene beneficiaries, it’s including our volunteers, but it’s creating a space where they’re able to provide some sort of buy in, in terms of just feedback, in terms of all the programs of what we’re doing, shared journey. That’s one principle. The second part of it is really getting creative with the types of events that we host, right? Um A lot of our annual fundraiser events, think about the barriers that we create from the get go, right? Um Our venues may not be accessible to all the the pricing, the the different tiers of registration to sign up to these galas and auctions are probably out of touch for a lot of people. I live in the Pacific Northwest. People don’t really like to, you know, we’re not really big on the black t uh black tie attire. So really shifting from those um types of events that create barrier barriers upfront to a digital event and that what that might look like. I can give you one example, one of our customers um called Cornwall Man down in the UK. Instead of devoting so much money and overhead into a gla an auction, they, they really tapped into donor boxes, peer to peer feature. And they created kind of a competition where they let go of the guard rails of their marketing of their brand. And they let people set up these fundraising pages and kind of fundraise in meaningful ways that really connected with them. So they created, they created a competition exactly, basically just a virtual competition. Um They include the challenges um prizes and, you know, a very small pool of about 216 fundraisers raised over 100 and 50,000 all through this kind of Gamification feature um per se. Now, this is going to vary, you know, by organizational culture too. I mean, I, I’m the first person who to say that events are often overly relied on, right. On the other hand, there are organizations where the, the the people expect the annual, you know, whatever golf outing gala, you know. Uh and I, I under I again, I, I, you know, I appreciate that events are burdensome in terms of time. And I think a lot of AAA lot of that money could or all of it could be captured in through individual fundraising if we were having, you know, like meaningful conversations with donors and, and elevating their giving sort of an investment level conversations. Um But, you know, but by, but by the same token, you know, we can’t just eliminate all the, eliminate all the events because there are people who count on those events in no way. Right? And I, I hear you, Tony and no way am I saying to do away with these in person events? We really do rely on them, right? We, we all know, so there’s nothing like that in person, the face to face um touch, I think in terms of the the format of these events, what I’m saying is let’s get creative and how we engage the senses of our, of our donors. Um Again, thinking about breaking free of those barriers and that might, that might have to do with rethinking the type of venue, rethinking the type of attire um the pricing that’s offered you, you probably know this as well as I incorporating technologies. We saw this with charity Water, right? Not every nonprofit is going to have a massive Hollywood budget. But yeah, yeah, they’re, they’re an outlier. They, they’re enormous, right? But we do have a customer um refugee hope partners in terms of kind of reimagining an in person event. They, they kind of did away with the Gallant live auction. They hosted a three hour community neighborhood event. Um it was family friendly um right after work hours and how they kind of really brought to life, the mission of, of who they serve, which are refugee and immigrant families. They tapped into local chefs who kind of they, each, all of these chefs represented different communities that the nonprofit served and through the ingredients in the, in the in the meals that were served, they kind of used those ingredients to kind of tell the story of the mission. And so I guess that’s what I’m just trying to say is yes, we still need to do these in person events, right? Um But oftentimes we know this with galas and auctions automatically from the get go. There are those barriers before you register and then even thinking about it, Tony, when you show up to these galas, you know, you have one or two people on stage right behind the podium, the proximity, thinking about the proximity. And so just thinking about ways that we can really create these immersive experiences and tapping in a technology to kind of get created creative in how we connect with our supporters. So sort of more experiential maybe and less passive for the for the folks who come, who come to an event, precisely less, less passive observer spectator, more thinking about ways where the supporter is not just hearing about your mission, right? They’re really living and feel it and feeling it and these could be large or small events too. I mean, you, you we might be able to do something with just 25 or 30 people, you know, and not again, not to replace AAA larger event but makes it easier to experience. Maybe you know what’s going on in your office, if you have something that you can show something that people can touch, uh, in a, in a smaller, in a smaller group. Well, and it’s, it’s also thinking beyond the annual fundraiser. Right. I mean, let’s be real with the, with the annual fundraiser, with even a year end direct mail campaign. Think about it. Um, they’re very surface level, right? Do they? What’s the follow up that happens after often times from my personal opinion, it’s, it’s very limited. And so thinking through these other experiences that are baked into your fundraising strategy, again, that might be a um community led focus group where you’re inviting your donors and the people you serve to kind of, they may be, they may be compensated. They’re giving really great feedback on the design of your programs. It might be behind the scenes tours of, let’s say you have a food bank. Um But it’s all those things that need to happen in the in between from the year end appeal that you send out to that annual fundraiser. And that’s what I’m trying to say is we really need to be, we need to slow down. And if you think about it with your, with our loved ones, right, with our family and our friends, it’s not a one and done type of thing. Obviously, it needs to happen regularly and it needs to be really organic and oftentimes really informal, it’s time for a break. Virtuous is a software company committed to helping nonprofits grow generosity, virtuous beliefs that generosity has the power to create profound change in the world and in the heart of the giver, it’s their mission to move the needle on global generosity by helping nonprofits better connect with and inspire their givers. Responsive. Fundraising puts the donor at the center of fundraising and grows giving through personalized donor journeys that responds to the needs of each individual virtue is the only responsive nonprofit CRM designed to help you build deeper relationships with every donor at scale. Virtuous, gives you the nonprofit CRM fundraising, volunteer marketing and automation tools. You need to create responsive experiences that build trust and grow impact virtuous.org. Now back to experiential fundraising with Britain Stockert, you have advice to around membership programs, how they can be more engaging. Why don’t you explain some of your thinking there? Yeah, membership programs are, you know, we have a customer in San Francisco and they have a museum um focused on media censorship and they have a beautiful high quality print publication. And so they basically set up just a membership program with different uh membership tier levels. Basically, if donors wanna sign up, uh depending on a certain price point, it can be $50 donation to 200 per month, depending on that membership tier. They, they get to feel like they, they’re exclusive members. They, they have access to very exclusive types of perks and benefits. Um That is a great way to generate sustainable income. Um I would say it’s very similar to monthly giving only, only that it is a membership program is really set up for nonprofits that, that have the capacity to deliver very specific and exclusive benefits to this group of people. Like you really need whatever you’re promising, right? You need to make sure you have the capacity to deliver. But I would say it is a very popular tool with a lot of our customers um as a way to create that sustainable income membership, membership. So it, it’s sort of, you know, it sounds like um you know, a lot of personalization, uh connection, connection to the mission, connection to your values, maybe even uh you know, thinking through something that’s again, memorable, experiential, you know, personalized. Um Let’s take a little digression. You know, you, you uh you have some thinking about what, what we’re all experiencing outside nonprofits. Now, the the experience economy, which is where your, your thinking kind of comes from. Let’s take a little digression before we talk about more, more strategies for doing this in our nonprofit. What, what uh we, we’re all experiencing it, the experience economy help us recognize what we’re, what we’re living through. Yeah, I mean, I can speak to you as a full time mother. I, I was hoping from the pandemic that we would slow down a little bit slow down in terms of in all of our interactions that we have, whether it’s at work or personal. We’re very thoughtful. We’re, we’re just intentional on whatever we do. We’re not seeing that it personally. And I hear this from a lot of nonprofits that I coach, they’re being pulled every which way and, and you know, I mentioned those kind of macro level challenges that our sector faces. But thinking about it from a donor perspective, we know demand for social services is at its highest, right? We also know that nonprofit executives that are needed in our sector are jumping ship to more consulting work. Donors at the same time are their attention, right? We have, we have shorter attention spans. Donors are being pulled every which way by I wouldn’t call them competing but many nonprofits that are really in need of their attention. And so in my, in how I’m feeling the world is not slowing down, it’s it’s a very fast paced world and we really need to be strategic and how we capture donors attention, how we’re more discerning as nonprofits in our interactions and thinking about how we’re engaging all of their senses because like I said, our attention, I think I heard it one time, Tony, we have the attention of a of a goldfish which is like 30 seconds. So. Right. Yeah, but uh but I’m trying to go bigger picture the the experience economy. What is that? What is the experience economy that we’re all experiencing. We, you know, personally the experience economy, we’re, we’re feeling fatigued, we’re numb. We also live in a world of filters and a lot of noise. And so I, I think about it watching a Netflix movie if I don’t have my glasses and I’m, and I’m watching the movie. It’s very monochromatic, it’s very flat. I need to be fully engaged. I need to have surround sound. I need to have all of these other elements that are tapping into my five senses to wake up and to pay attention. And so I think when we’re talking about experience, economy, we need to be smarter in how we’re engaging with people because people are fatigued, we’re tired, we’re very distracted and we have more external forces really vying for our attention. OK, cool. Thank you. Um Sponsorships, you have some thinking around sponsorships, how these can be engaging, share, share some of your, your thoughts there, corporate sponsorships, you know, I live in Seattle. We are home to big tech and engineering and you know, if you are a start up or emerging nonprofit, really taking a look at uh where you’re located. Most local businesses, most larger companies have great corporate social responsibility programs, um particularly new companies that have just launched a CS R program. They’re looking for nonprofits to partner with um to really support and to really kind of position themselves from other companies in their communities. You know, here in Seattle Microsoft has a month in October of giving and many nonprofits host on site volunteer events. And we partner with a lot of Microsoft teams. And for every hour Microsoft um donates not just $25 per their employee, but for every hour that their employee volunteers. And so a great way to build those event sponsorships is starting looking at your local community and looking at the companies that are there, getting out there, speaking to their teams and doing some sort of on site project to kind of loop them into your pipeline. Ok. Well, we, most of us don’t have the value of the benefit of a Microsoft, you know, in our, in our, in our neighborhood. So, you know, smaller, smaller local companies, uh businesses, right? Might be a dry cleaner. Yeah, it, it doesn’t have to be a Microsoft or Boeing or Expedia. I mean, look at local realtor offices or, you know, it’s a small to medium size businesses that they’re right situated right in the community. They’re feeling the need, they’re seeing a lot of the same social issues that your nonprofit is tackling. They wanna give back and that would be a great place where to start. They’re also uh a lot of companies are interested in engaging their employees in sponsorship that not just that it’s, you know, a $500 donation of services for a silent auction or, or a cash donation or something, but, but engaging the employees because e especially younger folks, uh millennials, gen uh maybe, you know, Gen X. Yeah, you know, they’re looking for experiences uh beyond there, we’re talking about experiential fundraising. So there may be value in engaging employees of the business in uh in, in your work. Yeah, Tony, I mean, you call it out, especially with Gen X and millennials. We’re looking for workspaces that really align with our values. Um And I’ve read quite a bit of research on this more so than competitive pay and benefits. And so yes, this is a great recruitment retention tool if you’re a company, no matter your size to offer a few days of volunteering. And uh you know, your employees really wanna be a part of, of that as well. But from the nonprofit perspective, you know, pitching that to a to a local company that, you know, that we have experiences or, you know, or, or would that or questioning whether that would be valuable for your company, that’s something your employees would be interested in. And if they have younger employees, millennial, Gen X um that, that may very well be giving back to the local, to the lo to one of the local nonprofits. I mean, and it goes hand in hand, you know, we’re living, many of our communities are facing issues with affordable housing and inflation and the cost of living and small to medium size businesses. They would love to provide even more competitive pay, but they may not be able to. So, again, this is a great kind of add on to the company brand, the values in terms of, hey, we, we, we, we not just have a corporate social responsibility program, but we allow you as an employee to take some time off whether that’s one day, five days a year, that’s, that’s a really great selling point to recruit top talent to your team and then also retain them because it, again, it’s really about we’re talking about experience, but a lot of this has to do with that humanistic component that a lot of gen X millennials are looking for uh in their workplace. And it’s important when nonprofits are approaching companies of any size. And, you know, I’m, I’m thinking more of local small businesses um that they recognize that they have value to offer the company, the business, you know, you’re not going hat in hand humble, you know, would you would you give but that you have value to add to the, to their employment relationship. Like, you know, you and I are talking about the potential of volunteering. Um You know, I don’t, I don’t, I mean, that could take different forms, you know, like you said, it could be a day a month or it could be several hours a month. But you want to recognize that you bring value to the sponsorship relationship. You’re not just humbly asking. Yeah. And I mean, to to your point, I can give an example. I was a start right in the heart of downtown Seattle, we have the third largest homeless population. And you know, here I am needing tech services. I needed a tech team to implement AC RM and to customize it. And there’s a tech company called Slalom. They’re big, they’re huge. And you know, I, where I found value and confidence in approaching them was Slalom is located in the heart of downtown Seattle. The need that we’re addressing, right? And so I think when it comes to, if you are a small nonprofit, find where the alignment lies. It doesn’t matter if it’s a large company. If that company has any type of close proximity to the issue that you’re addressing, then more times than not, they will be bought into what you do. And you know, that was just an example, a big tech company, small tiny nonprofit start up. But because we had this shared visibility of family homelessness, right? And where we were located, it was an automatic alignment. And slalom was like, heck yeah, we’ll provide you with those consulting services for six years. So have confidence if you are AAA smaller nonprofit find where that alignment exists. It’s time for a break. Donor box open up new cashless in-person donation opportunities with donor box live kiosk. The smart way to accept cashless donations anywhere, anytime picture this a cash free on site giving solution that effortlessly collects donations from credit cards, debit cards and digital wallets. No team member required. Thus, your donation data is automatically synced with your donor box account. No manual data entry or errors. Make giving a brief and focus on what matters your cause. Try donor box live kiosk and revolutionize the way you collect donations. Visit donor box.org to learn more. It’s time for Tony’s take two. Thank you, Kate. I had something happen in the gym just today. Uh The, the guy I know um his name is Tim and that, that helps me. It helps me remember his name to say Tim in the gym. Tim Tim from the gym. Um And I don’t talk to him that much. I’m not a chatty gym goer, you know, I don’t need 57 minute breaks between each different um different machine that I’m doing or different exercise, you know, with the floor or whatever, you know. So we just, it’s brief, you know, hey, how are you? You know, that’s it. Uh But today I was already exercising when, when he came in and I heard him talk to someone uh who he apparently didn’t know and he said, hey, you know, how are you? And uh the person didn’t hear because there was no response. So he says again, hey, how are you today? And then this woman replies, oh, I’m doing great, you know, hi, how are you? And then he says, Tim says, oh, I’m, I’m great too. Especially because it’s my 67th birthday and I’m, I’m on the elliptical. I’m thinking, oh, my eyes are rolling. I’m thinking, oh, Tim, you know, you had to, you had to get the woman’s attention twice just so that you could share that. It’s your 67th birthday. I’m, you know, thinking why so needy, why? You know that? And it’s not that big a gym, it’s a town fitness center. So, you know, we all know now that it’s Tim’s birthday today. Uh, and I’m thinking, you know, Tim, you know, I, I, it was sad. Um, I would wish for him that he would have friends and family that would know it’s his birthday so they could call him and text him. You know, and, and that he doesn’t have to go to strangers. This was a woman. It was clear. He, he, he had never met her, he didn’t know her. He has to go to strangers twice. And so, so he can make the point that it’s his birthday. So, um, makes me think of, you know, our social networks too. You know, if you haven’t, if you haven’t shared something, uh, you haven’t done it right? You didn’t, if it’s not on Facebook that you, you made this great dinner, then it never happened. Like if he doesn’t tell everybody it’s his birthday, then maybe he feels it’s not a stranger, you know, strangers. So, you know, have friends have, have friends who know you well enough that they’ll call you on your birthday. Right. And, and you can share your joys with them without having to do it, you know, publicly feel bad for Tim. I, I, she was not so needy. She had more friends and that is Tony’s take two Kate. Happy birthday. Tim. So sad. I hope he got a birthday cake. Like, I hope he went out and treated himself and got a little cake or something after the gym. Well, even better. I hope somebody got him a cake. Exactly. But II, I don’t, there doesn’t seem to be enough of that in his life. Well, we’ve got just about, about load more time. Let’s get back to experiential fundraising, holidays and Awareness Day, fundraising. There’s, I don’t know, there are probably 1000 awareness days a year that there might be more, there’s, there’s more than 1000 because that would only be like three a day. Some, you know, some days it’s, uh, you know, you, you look at, you look at lists, um, there could be AAA A score of them 20 in a, in a, in a single day. So there’s thousands, there are many thousands of awareness, so many and they, and they keep cropping up. Right. So, pick a niche, you know, National Pickle Day. If, if you’re, if, I don’t know, you know, if you’re, I don’t know, maybe I was thinking of if you’re fighting alcohol addiction, that’s that’s a bad choice or that, that’s probably an off color example. Don’t use that one. But, um, there are lots of, there are lots of awareness days. Um, and you also have advice about lesser celebrated holidays. What are the, what do you, what do you find the lesser celebrated holidays? I mean, again, it boils down to your nonprofit. What’s the scope of services that you provide? I oversaw a diaper bank. A lot of people have not heard of a diaper need. Well, sure enough, there was a diaper need holiday. So, you know, pick, pick your, your choice. There are so many out there. Um, personally, I’m very biased about giving Tuesday. It’s a saturated day. Every nonprofit is vying for a donor’s attention. So find, find a holiday or a day that better aligns with what your non profit specifically does. It doesn’t have to be popular day that everyone joins in on Valentine’s Day. And Halloween tend to be lesser celebrated by uh by nonprofits. So maybe, you know, those, I mean, you know, especially, well, not, especially either one, Valentine’s Day and Halloween tend to be less lesser thought of. Yeah, and you know, in terms of engaging with your donors and, and I’m, I’m redefining how, what, how we name a donor. You know, that could be someone that you serve. It could be a community leader, a city council member. These are all people that give you time talent, treasure and in terms of how you engage with them again, like we talked about Tony. Yes, those annual fundraisers need to happen. Yes, you and direct mail online year end appeals need to happen. But think about those regular touch points of how you’re engaging with your supporters, donor appreciation events behind the scenes, tours, workshops on whatever topic that you’re addressing, hosting some sort of community led workshop, people love to provide feedback and get and be compensated for that. Uh They can be compensated focus groups. So just kind of really opening our minds to how we build relationships with people. Here, I am with you, right? A late afternoon, we’re connecting. It doesn’t have to be this big formal thing. Like in many ways, we’re having a very intimate conversation. So local partnerships too, I mean, we, we talked about it in the sponsorship, something else that’s uh the another area that’s uh on your blog. Um You know, so we talked about it in terms of sponsorships but, but more like, you know, partnerships partnerships with um maybe recurring events like a farmer’s market, something like that, you know, something that’s iconic in your community. Yeah, I I think of partnerships in terms of advocacy. Um wherever you’re located, chances are there are government leaders, right, that have quite a bit of influence and power and starting to build relationships with your local city council members because they’re gonna also help you advocate to the higher ups at the state level and, and be able to help you pass legislation that really kind of complements the work that you’re providing. So partnerships tapping into partnering with city council members getting to know them closely. Um Obviously other nonprofit leaders thought leaders right there in your communities, small businesses, restaurants love to host fundraisers, restaurants love to, to do partnership types of events. Um There’s so many options like, you know, some, uh the 1st $5 of every dinner or the 1st $25 of every meal on a certain night, you know, goes to, goes back to the nonprofit. And so you’re giving them a surge because you’re gonna be inviting all your, all your volunteers and your donors and maybe your staff has a table, you know, so you’re giving them a surge for a night and uh some of the, some of the, the revenue comes, comes back to you, right? And, and partnering with other nonprofits in the same area of focus, right? Oftentimes because of funding, we’re pitted, we’re, we’re kind of pit against each other vying for the same funding. You know, that might be a donation drive if you’re taking in kind donations, physical items, instead of just your nonprofit, hosting a quarterly donation drive at your local grocery store or wherever, partnering with those other nonprofits providing similar services to kind of make it a bigger event. I know here in Seattle there’s a recycle and repurpose company called RWE. And we had a day our Diaper Bank where we partnered with three other major diaper banks. Like for a major campaign, we, we, we generated press. We were on the news and basically RWE. RWE has thousands of customers on a very specific day. RWE customers. I think about 4000 customers donated unused diapers. And basically, we got pallets. I can’t even uh 20 pallets of diapers where we were able to kind of split the inventory between four diaper banks. And the impact was huge, we were able to really expand our impact. So again, partnering with those nonprofits that you might see as competitors in terms of funding, but tapping into those, those relationships to figure out ways that you can better support each other. How did so many people have so many unused diapers around or they went out and bought them? Was it a campaign to, to, I mean, who, who I think? I mean, I’m the guy with no Children, but I would think you use up all the diapers you have and then you don’t need them anymore because your child has outgrown diapers. It’s a fair question, Tony and I, you know, I’m a mom and I would ask the same thing, apparently, Children from ages 0 to 3 outgrow diapers fast. And so they always kind of are on to the next size and families are left with boxes of diapers and boxes of diapers are expensive. So it was a day partnering with RWE where RWE customers could, instead of the diapers going straight to the landfill. You know, let’s give back, let’s, let’s re, let’s use them. I see how it works. Ok. So people, people hold on to the, the, the 0 to 6 months when, while their child is now like one or something. Oh, yeah. Ok. I didn’t know, I didn’t know people do that. I thought you were just, I don’t know, give to a friend or I never, well, actually I never thought about it so I, I can’t say what I thought because I never gave it a thought. Well, apparently there, there was not a venue, a place to donate that type of item. Right. Yeah. No, I mean, it was enormously successful for you. 20 pallets. I’m not, not minimizing at all. I just, uh, you know, I just never thought of, uh, unused diapers. I thought you would use them to capacity, like, squeeze your one year old into a nine month. But I guess parents don’t do. It’s a good thing. I’m not a parent because I would have, I would have had my, I would have had my one year old in a three month old diaper. I mean, if I got, if I got an extra box of three month old diapers around, you know, I’m going to squeeze you in. Yes. And they’re expensive. So, but, you know, that was, that was also in terms of partnerships. We were also by partnering with these other diaper banks. We were also able to form a coalition where on one day we went to Olympia, which is the capital in Washington, met with legislators as a team and we were able to pass what was called N diaper need where families get an extra 100 and $50 a month as part of as part of their TF so low income families got kind of a subsidy to help them pay for diapers. So again, tap into those partners, you know, other nonprofits doing similar work. There’s so much potential to really expand that impact, especially because we know the issues that we’re up against are massive and huge. And oftentimes are one nonprofit, no matter how well funded, how well staffed we are, we’re just kind of unable to address it alone. So, yeah, look for synergies. I was also thinking of community events like, you know, if there’s a Memorial Day celebration or 1/4 of July celebration, you know, can your nonprofit be a part of that somehow, you know, showcase, showcase your work, somehow expose the public at the, at the community fair around uh Labor Day or something like that. Yes. Yeah. Most cities again, going back to the city level, they, they do host those types of July 4th Memorial Day events. Um There’s gosh, we were talking about all of the holidays, Tony. There are a lot of those and at those events, they’re looking for not just businesses, but they want to see local communities show up and have a presence and get the word out about what they do because frankly governments can’t, they can’t fund these issues, they can’t tackle them alone. They really need those local nonprofits. So, yes, that’s a great idea. Tony. Look at all the events that your city is ho hosting, oftentimes to host a table is a nominal fee for the type of visi visibility that it brings. And it’s also getting to know it’s really connecting with your local neighbors. Oftentimes, I I know this as a former ed when I was leading a start up my initial round of donors, guess what? They were my neighbors, right on, right on Finn Hill. Um That’s kind of where I started really hyper local and then kind of expanded out. What else can we talk about around experiential fundraising that I haven’t asked you about yet? Well, what about the challenges? I, I’m thinking I’m thinking you might get a couple of questions that might say, ok, we would love to do this relational, slow type of relationship building, but the reality is is we’re caught up in the hustle of the day to day. We have a board that’s extremely resistant to change, you know, and so let’s just, those are some of the challenges, right? So I’m, I’m talking about this concept about needing to slow down needing to build upon the number of touch points that we have with our supporters, but we also know the challenges. And so, you know, I guess let’s talk about some maybe actionable ways that nonprofit professionals can do this. Um You named a great one. Let’s focus on uh for the moment, the board that’s resistant to change. How are we gonna uh defeat slay the naysayers? Oh, ah, you know, I’m still trying to figure this out. I, I would say when you’re recruiting board members, it helps to have board members that obviously have some sort of nonprofit experience, whether it’s a volunteer or, or they’re taking professional development training on how nonprofits operate. That that is a challenge. Oftentimes sometimes we get board members, well, meaning while loving very passionate people, they come from the private sector and with that they bring some very harmful perceptions about how do we operate, what things we should fund and so kind of tackling this re this challenge of a resistance, a resistant board is bringing on folks that have been there that have been in your shoes that get it. Um, people that are doing the work and just very open, very open to saying, ok, let’s, yes, let’s do an annual fundraiser. Yes, we still need to do in a gala in a live auction. Yes, we need to do year and giving. But yes, also let’s let’s come up with these really informal organic, not just donor centric, more community centric experiences. And so, yeah, it just comes down to just finding people that have been in, in the shoes of nonprofit professionals. I think that really helps with letting go of that resistance would also be a valuable exercise for your, for your board in fundraising. You know, if we’re like, you know, we’re talking about local partnerships, um challenges, you know, community, community engagement, that could be something that uh the board could help with, you know, what connections do they have? Uh maybe to other nonprofits to, to local businesses. You had mentioned, you know, political leaders, you know, how can the board help us expand our influence in, in any of those areas? You know, that could be something that, I mean, that this all falls under the rubric of fundraising, you know, for boards that don’t want to fundraise or board members that don’t want to fundraise their, their contacts can be valuable and so help in these ways around in the, in the community. Yeah, I think, and I think you alluded to something Tony is getting their buy in early, um really involving them in this process. And I think a good place where to start is would be in your strategic planning. Um Board members are well connected in many, in, in, in many ways, more than one, they might have some great ideas in terms of reimagining the types of experiences that we’re giving with our donors. And so in order to kind of change, change that resistant mindset involving them early on in your strate strategic planning, right? Um You might outsource that to a third party to facilitate that process, but getting their buy in allowing them to voice their opinions about what kind of experiences does the nonprofit wanna offer. And I think that will also help with the budgeting budgeting piece as well because once board members feel acknowledged, they feel heard they feel part of the process they’re bought into it early on, they’re not surprised. It really helps making budgeting for these relational experiential experiences easier, right? To really build a, build a budget for? All right, Britain want to uh just leave us with some final thoughts and motivation around uh experiential fundraising. II, I would just say we get so caught up in the scramble of sending out one digital appeal or in person appeal to the next. And I think just as a former ed, former development director is slow down, pause and breathe, it’s going to be ok and give yourself grace oftentimes it’s really those one on one intimate um experiences you have with your donors that are equally as important as that annual gala and live auction. You’re building extreme, you’re forging, you’re getting to the depth, you’re building really deeper connections with those really intimate experiences you have. So keep doing the great work, be gracious and give yourself a lot of credit because our sector really needs you right now. Britain Stocker, she’s on linkedin. The company is at donor box.org Britain. Thank you very much for sharing all your thoughts. Hey, thanks. Thanks Tony. I I loved your pickle comment earlier that that made my day. I might have to think if there is a holiday for around that. But thank you so much for having me, Tony. It’s been a pleasure. My pleasure. Thank you very much for sharing Britain. Thank you. Next week, we’ll return to 24 NTC with sociocracy and attract more donors. If you missed any part of this week’s show, I beseech you find it at Tony martignetti.com were sponsored by Virtuous. Virtuous, gives you the nonprofit CRM fundraising volunteer and marketing tools. You need to create more responsive donor experiences and grow, giving virtuous.org and by donor box, outdated donation forms blocking your supporters, generosity. Don Box fast, flexible and friendly fundraising forms for your nonprofit donor box.org. I like the way you say that. Don a box. Like it’s obvious why do we even have to say it? It’s so obvious, daughter. A box. All right. All right. Our creative producer is Claire Meyerhoff. I’m your associate producer, Kate Pernetti. The show, social media is by Susan Chavez, Mark Silverman is our web guide and this music is by Scott Stein. Thank you for that affirmation. Scotty be with us next week for nonprofit radio. Big nonprofit ideas for the other 95% go out and be great.