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Campaigning During A Crisis: How to Adjust and Plan

June 25, 2020

The nonprofit world, just like the world in general, has been turned upside down by the COVID-19 pandemic and the growing crises over the economy and race relations in the US. All of us involved in philanthropy are working to determine our course in the choppy and unchartered waters.

Recently JGA sponsored a webinar aimed at casting a guiding light on moving forward with a fundraising campaign in the midst of these challenges. The webinar, Campaigns and COVID-19: What the Pandemic Means for Your Campaign, brought the perspective of four guests representing organizations at different stages of campaigns: planning; leadership gifts/quiet phase; major gifts/public phase; and campaign closure.

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Philanthropy’s Role in Reopening Your Doors After COVID-19

May 20, 2020

What role will philanthropy play as your organization prepares to welcome students back to campus, host performances, open the doors to your museum or resume in-person gatherings at your place of worship?

If you have ventured out of the house, you have seen the modifications that businesses are making to welcome customers back – plexiglass at checkout counters and drive-through windows, signage to accommodate social distancing in lines and many other modifications.

Each of you needs to develop and implement plans to help protect your stakeholders as you re-open your doors.

The timeframe and requirements for each of you to resume operations will vary drastically based on location, size of the groups, type of activities and the demographics of your constituency. But, no matter the differences, much planning will be required. Have you considered how philanthropy can be a part of your re-opening plans?

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Required Reading for Running a Campaign

January 17, 2019

Thoughtful planning for a campaign is more important than it has ever been. The pressure to meet increasingly high expectations is real, establishing ambitious but realistic goals is more critical than ever, and yet resources to do so are seriously constrained or questioned.

Recently, Johnson, Grossnickle and Associates (JGA) partnered with the Chronicle of Philanthropy to provide a curated collection of Chronicle articles and JGA insights on capital campaigns. While capital campaigns were historically the province of large charities and major institutions like universities and hospitals, in recent years they’ve become increasingly common among nonprofits of all sizes. In this collection of articles produced by Chronicle Intelligence, a division of the Chronicle of Philanthropy, we show you how to help your organization plan, market, and complete a successful capital campaign.

 If you believe a campaign is in your future, think about how well your organization can answer these key questions:

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Defining Campaign Success: Using a campaign to grow major gift donors

August 14, 2018

Like many others, I began my career in fundraising by attending the Principles and Techniques of Fundraising class at The Fund Raising School at Indiana University’s Lilly School of Philanthropy. As a new member of the development team at the Indiana University Foundation more than 20 years ago, I learned that, typically, an organization could anticipate that 80% of the dollars raised in a fundraising campaign would come from 20% of the campaign donors. The so-called 80/20 rule.

Much has changed in the last twenty years. Mirroring, or perhaps in response to, the changing landscape of wealth distribution in our society, fundraising campaigns have more significant dollar goals that rely on fewer and fewer donors in order to achieve success. Campaigns are now typically based upon the projection that 90% of the dollars will come from 10% of the campaign donors. In some corners of the nonprofit sector, notably higher education, successful campaigns may have 95% or more of the dollars contributed from as few as 5% of the campaign donors.

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Five Questions a Feasibility Study Should Answer

October 02, 2017

by Angela White

Some time ago, I recorded a short video interview on why we advocate feasibility studies at JGA, and I find that those reasons continue to hold true.

Conducting a feasibility study prior to a campaign is a common and proven way to gauge what level of support may be achieved in a campaign and what strategies should be employed – not only to achieve a financial goal but, perhaps as importantly, to build both unity and momentum for organizational success. 

 

A feasibility study provides the opportunity for your current and prospective lead donors to dream big, to think through what the future will look like for your organization, and to share how they see themselves participating in that future.

Here are some questions a good feasibility study should help you answer.

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7 Tips to Keep Momentum During a Capital Campaign

August 10, 2016

Capital campaigns are an important tool in raising funds for nonprofits. In fact, 20% of higher education institutions reported that being in a fundraising campaign helped them raise between 176% - 200% more funds. It’s no wonder then that in the first half of 2015 approximately 46% of nonprofits were in a campaign, up from 11% in 2011.

While a campaign can be a crucial initiative for moving an organization forward, the reality is that the vast majority of campaigns experience a period – or sometimes multiple periods – of time when they seem to lose steam. 

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5 Key Steps for Capital Campaign Planning

May 17, 2016

Conducting a capital campaign can be one of the most exciting and transformational activities that an organization can undertake. The funds raised through the campaign can allow you to bring to life the vision and aspirations identified in your strategic plan and position your organization to fulfil its mission for years to come. 

However, the excitement around the actual campaign can sometimes overshadow the realities. All campaigns come with some risk and require organizations to stretch to reach new levels. Proper campaign planning can minimize those risks and demonstrate to current and prospective donors the organization is a good investment and will be a good steward of their dollars.

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Trends in Endowment Fundraising Campaigns: 5 Key Implications

December 10, 2015

One of the more interesting aspects of our work as consultants is to observe trends and patterns in the experiences of our client institutions. While each of them have many specific and unique characteristics, it is also true that we observe and help them grapple with some of the same broad issues. One trend we have been seeing more frequently lately,  as referenced in a recent Chronicle of Philanthropy article, is the increasing interest in raising endowment support, leading many more institutions to consider an endowment fundraising campaign.

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Four Keys to An Effective Feasibility Study

December 03, 2015

After 19 years of consulting, the feasibility study process is still the most rewarding work that I do at JGA. We are honored that so many esteemed nonprofit organizations trust JGA to step into key donor relationships and assist in strengthening donor bonds that advance their missions.

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Recent Capital Campaign Trends in Education

November 13, 2015
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