Embracing the Unexpected

There is a reason that many fundraising programs stick with the tried and true. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t room for taking some risks.

In NonProfit Pro’s Crazy Enough to Work: Fundraising Efforts That Prove It Pays to Think Different,” author Sean Norris looks at ways that development leaders have switched up traditional methods of fundraising with more unexpected moves. A well-crafted creative strategy that deviates from the norm can bring new revenue, generate publicity, and offer fresh ways to engage donors.

The article highlights the ways that three nonprofits took unexpected leaps. The American Heart Association tried shaking up their usual charitable estate planning direct mail approach with something more lighthearted and fun. The result: the organization’s largest response to date. A second organization took one of their traditions, the creation of pinwheel gardens to raise awareness about child abuse prevention, and thought bigger. Much bigger, with a 30-foot pinwheel that gained many eyes and column inches of print. The third organization realized that their annual golf tournament might not draw their younger donors so they turned to dodgeball.

To read more about Norris’s thoughts on thinking beyond the usual, visit NonProfit Pro.