Top tips & how tos

The focus in this section is on practical ‘how to’ lists. Here the world's leading fundraisers share the distilled wisdom of their experience in digestible bite-sized nuggets that you can use immediately.

Nine fundraising tips you can learn from a savvy seven-year-old


by Michael Rosen

Here’s what you can learn from a seven-year-old and an 11-year-old.

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A fundraiser’s alchemy: turning tears to gold

by Lyndall Stein

In this new article about her time with AIDS charity the Terrence Higgins Trust, Lyndall Stein says, ‘…I have learned that it is a privilege to be a fundraiser. When you are working on the toughest issues in the hardest times, you know that your blood, sweat and tears will be turned to gold, that your work will be meaningful, relevant and will matter…’

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Hilda’s suitcase: when’s the right time to discuss leaving a legacy?

by Norma Cameron

Step into SOFII’s archive to explore more insights on legacy giving. We think you’ll love this charming and personal story from Norma Cameron, in Canada, who learned a very important lesson about gift planning from her mum.

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The great donor exodus, and what to do about it. A three-part series from Jay Love


by Jay Love

Jay Love’s revealing infographics have been setting American fundraisers alight recently, with good reason. Why do donors head for the exit? How does our sector’s attrition compare with customers of for-profit businesses? Do larger donors leave sooner? How many donors could you keep, if you just did some things differently?

Now on SOFII, widely respected data specialist and entrepreneur Jay Love explores these seemingly permanent hot topics with two generous helpings of practical advice all fundraisers could follow.

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How to find your inner writer

Cartoon of man typing fast

by Elizabeth Loudon

One of the best tips to find your inner writer is to steal one. So says Elizabeth Loudon here. You’ll also find other ideas and advice to help you force your inner writer into the open and write great letters that your donors will keep responding to for years.

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Hello! Testing! Testing! Testing!

Sightsavers Blinking Hell advertisment

by Andrew Papworth

Andrew Papworth says that testing is a vital part of good fundraising.

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Telephone fundraising, part 3: designing and delivering a campaign

by Bethan Holloway

The third – and last for the time being – article on telephone fundraising from Bethan Holloway explains how to design and deliver a campaign.

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Brilliant donor care: 15 steps to make sure your organisation gets it right

by Jonathon Grapsas

Before I launch into some tangible ways to improve the way you deal with donors, let me preface this by looking at the current climate. Just how are charities in different parts of the world interacting with donors on a daily basis?

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Nonprofit stories that inspire

by Larry Wilson

‘Do you have any idea what an M-16 rifle does to a child at close range?’

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LEGGE HEADS ARMS BODY: top ten secrets of headlines that pull

by Ken Burnett

If you are raising funds in any public medium your responses will directly relate to the effectiveness of your headline. A good headline can easily double or triple your response, and a great one can do even better – up to 17 times better, some say.

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Nine tips for effective e-mails

Nick Allen.

by Nick Allen

E-mail may seem boring, what with Google Earth, Web 2.0, Twitter, widgets, and badges, but it’s still the workhorse of online fundraising and communications.

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Is your newsletter great donor relationship-building, or an unwise self-indulgence?

by Tom Ahern & Sean Triner

Almost all nonprofits produce a newsletter and send it out with their warm appeals. But should they?

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