annual fund

Holy Mega-Goal! Chief Development Officers and the Superhero Environment

Holy Mega-Goal! Chief Development Officers and the Superhero Environment

The welcome email lands in your inbox: A new Chief Development Officer (CDO) is starting at your non-profit. When this fine fledgling bursts though the lobby, she’s donning a mask and cape. She is, after all, a Development Superhero who excels at everything: asking, planning, rallying the board, grant writing, and donor retention – she’s exactly who we need to save our non-profit.

With the expectations placed on today’s fundraising professional, is it any wonder a CDO position has an 18-24 month average tenure at most institutions?

Performing Arts –– Why is Marketing More Important than Fundraising?

The welcome email lands in your inbox: A new Chief Development Officer (CDO) is starting at your non-profit. When this fine fledgling bursts though the lobby, she’s donning a mask and cape. She is, after all, a Development Superhero who excels at everything: asking, planning, rallying the board, grant writing, and donor retention – she’s exactly who we need to save our non-profit.

With the expectations placed on today’s fundraising professional, is it any wonder a CDO position has an 18-24 month average tenure at most institutions?

Every Annual Fund Dollar – One Face but Two Names

I’ve helped dozens of performing arts organizations with annual fund campaigns. Sometimes my services are called upon when the goal’s already been established, and that makes me rightfully nervous. My first question is: how did you establish the goal? Sometimes I hear this methodology: we’ve figured out the gap and that’s our annual fund goal. Or, “last year we raised 6% over the prior year, so we’re aiming for 9% this year.” And then there’s my favorite, “the CEO set the goal” goal.

The Conundrum: Annual Fund or Endowment? Which is More Important?

It’s not a trick question.

RSC regularly receives calls from prospective performing arts clients who are interested in pursuing an endowment campaign. With the long-term cash flow needs, who can blame them? However, too often the desire for an endowment campaign is based on other revenue areas failing – or at least not keeping pace with the institution’s needs – and are not exactly the ideal environment to launch a successful major gift effort.  So, in most cases, our answer is the same -- don’t launch an endowment campaign if ticket sales and annual giving are trending in the wrong direction. Why do we so often make this suggestion?  It’s simple...

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