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Fundraising communications best practices

Five keys to successful fundraising

By Steier Tips

In his book “A Spirituality of Fundraising,” renowned author and philosopher Henri Nouwen described fundraising as “proclaiming what we believe in such a way that we offer other people an opportunity to participate with us in our vision and mission.” But how do we get people to give to something we believe in? And what keeps people supporting this in the future? These five keys to successful fundraising can be used for any fundraising effort – a church, school or local nonprofit. We are confident that if you apply these tips, your fundraising effort will be a success. Be authentic:…

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Henri Nouwen and Nathan Ball, right, kitchen at L'Arche Trosly-Breuil.

The Courage to Fundraise

By podcast, Steier Tips

The Steier Group is proud to debut our new podcast, Twelve Wicker Baskets with Christopher Beaudet. Subscribe now on your favorite podcast app. In the Gospel, Jesus fed 5,000 with only five loaves and two fish. After the crowd was satisfied, there were 12 wicker baskets left over. God provides the abundance. In each episode of this podcast, we will explore, with pastoral leaders and development professionals, all the many ways God meets the spiritual and temporal needs of our parish communities, our Catholic schools and the diocesan church. And not only meets those needs but provides in abundance. The…

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What is the state of fundraising in 2022?

By Steier Tips

Although the past few years have been tumultuous, data shows that donors have been as generous as ever. The state of fundraising in 2022 looks strong. In November, the Fundraising Effectiveness Project released its data on the first two quarters in 2021, showing an increase over 2020. FEP did see slowdown in the second quarter, but overall fundraising was still up. The slowdown in the second quarter could be due to the abnormally strong growth in quarter one. A few other notes from this data: The rise in number of donors was small (.7%) but total funds raised were up…

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Boost year-end fundraising with a focus on stewardship

By Steier Tips

As 2021 ends, nonprofits are discussing how best to solicit end-of-year gifts. Most often, the discussion centers on methods of giving such as taxes and retirement accounts. But, during the Christmas season, we believe a focus on stewardship – the heart of giving – serves to enhance year-end fundraising. The United States Catholic Conference of Bishops unveiled four tenets that define stewards: Our lives, and all that we have, are gifts from our loving God. As stewards of God’s gifts, we take care of what we have and generously share it with others. Seeing everything before us as gift –…

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Customized donor recognition is key to maintaining relationships

By Steier Tips

Donor recognition and expressing gratitude for gifts received are important development responsibilities for every nonprofit organization. Acknowledging a donor’s generosity begins with the understanding that receiving a gift is the difficult part. Thanking them, it would seem, should be the enjoyable part. Then why do so many nonprofit organizations skip it – or fail to take time to properly thank their donors? Unfortunately, it is because they have already moved on to seeking that next gift. That is a mistake. There are different ways an organization can recognize donors for their generosity. The first is group recognition. Most organizations do…

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Tools to stock your fundraising toolkit in 2021

By Steier Tips

The fundraising landscape changed dramatically in 2020. But the Steier Group’s message to our partners has remained the same – keep communicating, keep sharing your story, keep shaping your vision and keep asking for support. Do not leave these most important tools in your arsenal on the sidelines. Your donors want to support your organization and are eager to help. Your needs are real and aren’t going away. Whether it is a debt reduction campaign or a campaign to expand your campus, address deferred maintenance, or strengthen an endowment, nonprofits across the country are finding success. As you strive for…

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Four ways to increase your annual giving during the pandemic

By Steier Tips

A physician was once seeing his patient, the principal of his high school alma mater. Asking how the school was doing, the principal shared they were trying to raise money to improve classroom technology. The doctor asked, “How much would that cost?” to which the principal replied, “We think around $50,000.” At the end of the appointment, the doctor offered to write the school a check to cover the full cost. Surprised, the principal asked, “Are you sure?” “My friend,” the doctor replied, “if someone says they want to give you $50,000, don’t ask them if they’re sure. And yes,…

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What to do if your PPP money is running out

By Steier Tips

For many nonprofits, the Paycheck Protection Program provided a much-needed life raft during the early days of the pandemic. Religious organizations have received an estimated $6 billion to $9 billion in COVID relief funds. Catholic dioceses received $1.4 billion. These loans, many of which will be forgiven, have provided urgent relief, saved four million jobs and enabled nonprofits to continue to serve their communities. However, because initial PPP recipients were required to spend their loans within eight weeks, a time period which was later extended to 24 weeks, the funding is quickly running dry for an increasing number of organizations….

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Live forum: Eliminating the Envelope

By Steier Tips

Religious organizations – when faced with plummeting financial support from their members because of COVID-19 – flocked to provide a platform for online giving. What often took parishes and congregations months to convert turned into a transition of days by necessity, Jared Fritz, Pushpay’s marketing manager, told forum participants that focused on “Eliminating the Envelope.” The forum was hosted by the Steier Group. Fritz shared statistics with participants that reinforced the value of providing donors with a platform for online giving: 74% of churches offer some type of online giving. Less than 15 percent donate by using checks. More than…

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Live forum: Our return to worship

By Steier Tips

Parishioners applauded when St. John the Evangelist Catholic Church in Valley, Nebraska, reopened for Mass recently. “They were so happy to be at Mass,” reported Fr. Lloyd Gnirk. They also cheered at St. Robert Bellarmine Catholic Church in Omaha, Nebraska, added Debbie Marcil, pastoral associate. Fr. Gnirk’s and Marcil’s comments were part of a panel discussion hosted by the Steier Group that centered on the topic: “Welcome Home … Our Return to Worship.” Panelists reported that parishioners were excited to be back at Mass – but the numbers of attendees weren’t what they expected. Fr. TJ Dolce, pastor at St….

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