Posted by Kennerly Benraty

Looking through my bookshelf, I came across The Go-Giver by Bob Burg and John David Mann. I was gifted this book in my first few months as a fundraiser when a mentor of mine slid it across a coffee table in my direction with a credulous smile and told me there’s one contingency (you’ll have to read on your own to find out!) if I decided to follow its teachings.

Read More

Topics: Donor Stewardship, Stewardship, Fundraising, How To Ask, Art Of The Ask, Donor Relations, Making The Ask, Nonprofit, What We're Reading


“Just apply for this grant and you’ll get the money!”

If you are a development leader, you’ve most certainly heard this from a colleague or board member. However, seasoned development leaders know these words are not as simple as they sound. The process of obtaining grants can be complex, time consuming, and highly competitive.

This is where an important member of the development team comes into play-the grant professional.

Read More

Topics: Fundraising, How To Ask, grant writing

And Now What? The Key Question in Major Gifts Fundraising

Posted by Jon Simons

Simple or complex?  Basic or advanced?  Checkers or chess? Which approach best describes your fundraising?

Read More

Topics: Grit, Fundraising, How To Ask, Financial Development, Ymca, Fundraising Campaign, Listening, Communication

Fundraiser of the Year

Posted by Jan Brogdon

I’m nominating Alice S. for “Fundraiser of the Year.”

While that award may not exist exactly, this spunky, driven young lady has much to teach even the most seasoned development professionals.

Read More

Topics: Fundraising, How To Ask, Art Of The Ask, Asking, Inspiration, Relationship Building, Communication, Making The Ask, Donor

What To Do With A No

Posted by Bruce Berglund

Nearly every big ask in my career as a staffer and consultant – whether it be an ask for a lead gift or a key leadership position – started with a no.

For example:

Would you and your family consider a lead gift of $____ for this campaign? No.

Would you consider serving as a chair for this campaign? No.

It wasn’t fun to hear, but it didn’t mean the end of the relationship, just a change in strategy. What is the next step after the no? Do you move on? Or do you re-approach in a new way?

Read More

Topics: Fundraising, How To Ask, Annual Fundraising, Fear, Giving, Making The Ask

Challenging Best Practices in Grant Fundraising

As the nonprofit world continues to move out of the pandemic recovery stage to the “new normal” and economic uncertainty, we find ourselves in changing times in every area of fundraising. Grant makers are no different. Many are re-evaluating their own models of giving and looking to change the way they invest in communities. Some are even going so far as to forgo formal line-item budgets in applications and traditional written applications all together and are asking nonprofit partners to solicit requests through a variety of channels including virtual presentations, videos and Q&A sessions.

Development professionals know that during times of change and transition, it is more important than ever to stay focused on best practices. In the foundation world we know these to be:

  • Get to know the funder and their giving priorities
  • Understand the application process
  • Make a strong case and clearly identify outcomes
  • Be a good steward

While we keep best practices at the forefront of our work, it doesn't mean there’s not room for creativity within each practice.  

Read More

Topics: Fundraising, How To Ask, grant writing


Posted by Jan Brogdon

I’m nominating Alice S. for “Fundraiser of the Year.”

Read More

Topics: Success Stories, Donation, How To Ask, Art Of The Ask, Professional Development, Goals, Making The Ask


Posted by Michele Goodrich

In any given year, grantmaking foundations in the United States award BILLIONS of dollars to nonprofit organizations. 

If you want to increase your chances of receiving some of those funds, consider thinking of foundations as individual donor prospects.

Read More

Topics: How To Ask, Asking, Strategy, Planning, Communication, Ask For Advice, Making The Ask, Preparation, grants, grant writing


Posted by Jon Simons

Fundraising is a lot like yoga. If it hurts, you are probably doing it wrong.

Read More

Topics: Ask, How To Ask, Art Of The Ask, Patience, Making The Ask


Posted by DBD Team

This July, we’re answering burning questions we hear from many clients and non-profit colleagues across the country. Chances are, the question might be burning in our readers’ minds, as well.

Read More

Topics: Feasibility Study, How To Ask

Our Latest Posts