Step two: cut it out!

So you're focusing on really great personal relationships with your clients/donors. Great! You're well on your way to seeing an increase in revenue.

Step two may be a bit harder, especially if (a) you've done things the same way for a long time and change scares you and/or (b) you don't keep very good records...I'll get to that in a minute.

You've got to cut costs wherever possible....think lean. If you're a nonprofit that's held the same "fundraising" event for 30 years but it stopped actually raising funds about a decade ago, CUT IT OUT! Those in the "old guard" will quickly change their tune when they see a clear, comprehensive report showing the losses. And shedding the weight of that expensive gala may just pave the way for a fresh, innovative new event that speaks to the local community and brings in more money than the old event ever did! Don't be afraid of change. If you're a business that's advertised in newspapers for as long as you've been around, even if the return on that simply isn't what it used to be, don't be afraid to shake it up.

Now to record-keeping....the best way to see where money is being wasted is data analysis. If you are sending out 1,000 hard mail marketing pieces and you get 1 new client/donor from that mailing, do you consider that a success? If the mailing cost you $2,500 (be honest: printing + postage + staff time) and you made $500, that's not okay.

If you took that same list of 1,000 prospects and strategically segment that list so 80% receive an email and only 200 hard mail pieces are sent, combined with a coordinated social media campaign over three days, and you make $2,500....isn't that a better scenario for you?

When I was in the Navy, we said, "Work smarter, not harder." Do some real analysis of where you can cut the waste and trim your spending. ~m


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