Welcome to the Nonprofit Snapshot blog!

How many times have you been told a fact, only to forget it by the next day? For example, we could tell you something like “squirrels are behind the most power outages in the U.S.” (it’s true!), which you might remember, only because it’s odd. However, you’re way more likely to remember that fact if we told you a story about a squirrel named Larry who wreaked havoc on the American power grid, which led to the realization that squirrels do indeed cause a shockingly high number of power outages nationwide. 

You get the point: stories are more memorable. And it’s proven! According to cognitive psychologist Jerome Bruner, stories are 22 times more memorable than just stating a fact. 

So how is this research relevant to your nonprofit? Well, it means that you can build stronger and more meaningful relationships with your website visitors by harnessing the power of storytelling. 

Fundraising for your nonprofit is about more than money — it’s also about inspiring donors to make a difference with their contributions. Your donors don’t want to feel like an ATM. They want to know that their funds are impacting real people. 

Through storytelling, you can convey this impact and more, especially if you bring stories to your website. However, you’ve got to do it right, so we’ve put together some tips to help. When using your website to share meaningful stories about your work, you should: 

  • Identify your characters
  • Integrate stories throughout your website
  • Use lots of images
  • Remember that your story doesn’t have to be finished

Picture this: You decide to donate to a nonprofit that’s piqued your interest and sit down, phone in hand, to complete your transaction. However, when you navigate to the nonprofit’s donation page, you have to click through to a third-party donation form that’s hard to read on your phone. You start to fill it out and realize it’s asking for a lot of your personal information and is going to take you a lot longer than you thought. Instead of donating to this nonprofit, you decide to abandon your donation and look for another organization to give to. It doesn’t matter whether you’re just starting a nonprofit or you’ve been running your organization for years—you know that your success relies on effective fundraising. And a huge part of fundraising today is not only driving donors to your online donation page but keeping them there. This is where the design and functionality of your donation page can be a huge asset to facilitate as many donations as possible. To help you optimize your own nonprofit donation page, we’ve organized the following essential strategies:

  • Pay attention to design.
  • Embed your donation form.
  • Use a reliable payment processor.
  • Provide other engagement opportunities.

Eager to learn more about how you can make the most of your online giving form to maximize donations and engagement? Let’s dive in.

There are plenty of ways to raise funds and awareness, but one of the most popular strategies is fundraising events that focus on donor engagement. Auctions are a tried-and-true way to connect with donors and simultaneously raise funds for your cause. Adding engagement strategies in your next auction can bring your event to the next level. We will dive into 5 strategies you can implement in your next fundraising auction to drive deeper donor engagement:

  • Leverage Ambassador Fundraising.
  • Procure Great Items.
  • Price Your Items Fairly.
  • Ensure It's Easy To Bid On And Receive Items.
  • Make Your Auction Part of Another Event.

Most nonprofit professionals, whether you’ve just started or have been in the nonprofit sector for a long time, are familiar with form 990. This end-of-year tax form can be quite daunting, even for seasoned professionals, but especially if you’ve only just become acquainted with it. Form 990s are very important for ensuring that your nonprofit maintains its tax exempt status and is legally recognized as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. While it can be complicated to know which version of the form is the right one for your organization and how to fill it out, this doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to complete it on time. In this guide, we’ll start from the beginning to make sure everyone is on the same page about what the Form 990 is and why it’s important. Then, we’ll dive into deadlines, strategies you can use to ensure you meet deadlines, consequences if you miss deadlines, and next steps for your nonprofit. We’ll cover all of this important tax-season information by answering the following questions:

The average American picks up their phone 96 times a day, or once every 10 minutes. For most of us, this equates to hours of scrolling through social media, checking email, and staying in touch with family members and friends. For nonprofit organizations, this represents an effective way to engage with supporters amid the ongoing pandemic. Since most in-person events have been canceled or modified in some way, nonprofits have expanded their digital and mobile fundraising capabilities to engage supporters remotely. This includes exploring text fundraising opportunities that allow organizations to connect with supporters directly on their mobile devices. According to Double the Donation’s nonprofit fundraising statistics, half of last year’s nonprofit website traffic came from mobile and tablet users. This demonstrates the crucial importance of connecting with supporters on mobile devices, and text fundraising is a great way to do exactly that. In this quick guide, we’ll review everything you need to know about text fundraising, including:

How to Grow Your Monthly Giving Program

Monthly giving programs provide your nonprofit with reliable revenue throughout the year. When compared to other fundraising initiatives, monthly giving may seem like it takes a “set-it-and-forget-it approach.” However, growing your monthly giving program to maximize its benefits takes dedicated time and investment. Knowing the program will earn regular donations once it’s established can be freeing for some nonprofits, but it may make other fundraising professionals assume that they can’t actively expand their monthly giving program further. As an incredibly valuable source of income, your monthly giving program is worth additional investment to ensure it’s achieving its maximum potential. Keeping in mind that monthly donors tend to increase their value over time, your nonprofit can take additional steps to attract more monthly donors and earn more from the supporters currently enrolled in your program. To help your nonprofit expand your monthly giving program, this article will explore five key tips including: