What should we be prioritizing now?


During the coronavirus era, many of us are isolating, sheltering-in-place or simply keeping apart. Yet most of us are spending time reaching out to family, friends and colleagues.

Are we keeping in mind our connection with our supporters? Donors are craving connection, too, with their family, friends – and us, their nonprofit partners. It is through their philanthropy that they often see their values in action.

But what is the best way to connect – with the world at a tilt and standstill at the same time?

I’ve got a video for you where I share my suggestions and tips. Having been a fundraiser through the 2000 dot-com bubble and the 2008 downturn, I know that strong donor relationships are the best way to ensure you can continue to carry out your mission and meet the needs of clients, students, animals, the environment – whomever and whatever you are serving.


Right now, plan how you will be in touch with donors and nonprofit leaders, as well as volunteers. Now is the time to remind them that they have a heroic role to play!

  • Keep things 1:1 – show that you care about them and are giving your time and attention.
  • Use my three key prompts to create a never-forgotten message.
  • Start the first sentence with YOU. It will be powerful and touch the donor’s heart.
  • Sign, add your name and title, then use a PS to further engage.
  • If you haven’t yet call your donors – pick up the phone now.
  • I’ve prioritized who you might write and call first – be sure to enlist the help of your leadership – your executive director and board members.
  • Be ready to talk about what you are doing to help as an organization – and where help is needed now.
  • Be authentic. Listen. Be generous. Be ready.

My partner and I have been receiving quite a few calls as we have been in self-isolation. The charities we care about, we answer. Others we let go to message. But we feel remembered and a few commitments have been made over the phone. In some cases, the calls refer to recent mailings. In others, a simple check-in.

How are you connecting with supporters? How are you feeling connected to charities you support?

Yes! I want joy sailing through my inbox!

Open a package of smarts and joy! Every fortnight, find strategies, tips + inspiration to:

  • Accomplish anything with grit, grace + gratitude.
  • Navigate a successful career + balance your personal life.
  • Create deeper relationships between supporters + your nonprofit.
  • Understand how to work with high net-worth supporters.

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