5 episodes

Welcome to The Intentional Fundraiser, an original podcast by Fundraising Transformed.

My name is Tammy Zonker, host of The Intentional Fundraiser podcast, and Founder and President of Fundraising Transformed, and contributing writer for NonProfit PRO.

This is the podcast where I equip and empower amazing nonprofit fundraising pros just like you to transform your fundraising so you can transform the world. I'll be sharing fundraising insights, strategies, and inspiration you can use to skyrocket your fundraising results!

We’ll also share new, focused, highly relevant interviews about the trends, best practices, and questions that matter most right now.

Oh, and be warned - you may hear a rant every now and then. Just say'n!

So you don't miss a single episode, visit https://bit.ly/SubscribeTIFPodcast and subscribe today to The Intentional Fundraiser Podcast!

You’ll then be one of the first to know when I publish the newest episode.

And if you like my podcast, write a review on Apple Podcast or Google and share it with someone who needs it!

I appreciate you, and what it takes to be an Intentional Fundraiser.

Talk soon!

Tammy Zonker
Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker

P.S. Listen to Inside Fundraising, our weekly podcast featuring one-on-one interviews with incredible fundraisers who generously share their struggles, insights and lessons learned en route to achieving fundraising success and impacting lives. Hosted by Chronicle of Philanthropy and sgENGAGE contributing writer R. Trent Thompson.

The Intentional Fundraiser Podcast Tammy Zonker

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    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Welcome to The Intentional Fundraiser, an original podcast by Fundraising Transformed.

My name is Tammy Zonker, host of The Intentional Fundraiser podcast, and Founder and President of Fundraising Transformed, and contributing writer for NonProfit PRO.

This is the podcast where I equip and empower amazing nonprofit fundraising pros just like you to transform your fundraising so you can transform the world. I'll be sharing fundraising insights, strategies, and inspiration you can use to skyrocket your fundraising results!

We’ll also share new, focused, highly relevant interviews about the trends, best practices, and questions that matter most right now.

Oh, and be warned - you may hear a rant every now and then. Just say'n!

So you don't miss a single episode, visit https://bit.ly/SubscribeTIFPodcast and subscribe today to The Intentional Fundraiser Podcast!

You’ll then be one of the first to know when I publish the newest episode.

And if you like my podcast, write a review on Apple Podcast or Google and share it with someone who needs it!

I appreciate you, and what it takes to be an Intentional Fundraiser.

Talk soon!

Tammy Zonker
Fundraising Strategist & Keynote Speaker

P.S. Listen to Inside Fundraising, our weekly podcast featuring one-on-one interviews with incredible fundraisers who generously share their struggles, insights and lessons learned en route to achieving fundraising success and impacting lives. Hosted by Chronicle of Philanthropy and sgENGAGE contributing writer R. Trent Thompson.

    4. Make It A Happy New Year–Start to Finish

    4. Make It A Happy New Year–Start to Finish

    Welcome to 2022! I love a New Year! A fresh start.A new beginning. An opportunity to create and reimagine the future. To dream new dreams.

    To set new goals.

    The truth is, you and I both know we can start fresh and set new goals at any moment during the year. And yet, there’s something magical about January 1st and planning for a new year, at least for me. In fact, it may just be my favorite holiday. I want to share how I approach planning for my new year. I’ve honed this process over many years – and it works for me. Maybe a nugget or two will enhance your new year planning. And if this approach resonates with you, download our free New Year Goal Planning Guide. It’s a simple set of prompts to inspire your reflection and 2022 goal and dream setting. I like to begin my New Year by identifying and eradicating the clutter. What isn’t useful to me any longer – tangibly and intangibly. Before I add anything for 2022, I need to make room for the new and minimize things that can distract me or aren’t a good use of my time and energy. What will I discard, minimize or stop doing altogether? I start with my email inbox.

    I unsubscribe to email feeds that I once wanted or needed, that I don’t want or need anymore. Or maybe I gave my email address in exchange for a download of a new research paper or study at some point during the past year. I unsubscribe to emails from my favorite brands. Tempting email promotions that don’t move me closer to my financial goals and can be a “shiny object” when I’m developing training or speaking content or working on a client project. Goodbye, Pottery Barn. Kate Spade. Goodbye, Veronica Beard and Angela Scott. I’ll miss you all! I mean, I will really, really miss you. I delete smartphone apps that I don’t really use or want to keep paying for each month or year. After all, to create something new, we need a clearing. A blank space. A clean surface. Think about a construction site. What’s the first thing a builder will do when planning to erect a new structure? They clear and grade the land. Every new structure needs a clean, solid foundation on which to build – free of rubble and environmental toxins. Your dreams and goals for 2022 are no different. Removing the clutter may also mean clearing physical space. Taking down holiday decorations. Dragging that once beautiful, now sad little half-naked Christmas tree to the curb for recycling. Clearing out closets, tidying up your office, your family spaces, or private spaces like bedrooms. Especially since many of us have been working from home or working in a hybrid model. Our work and the kid’s work may have completely taken over our homes! Purging and donating items we don’t use frequently. Clothing that no longer fits us well or isn’t our current style. Be bold and donate those jeans you proudly wore before you had children. For me, if I ever get back to that size – I will treat myself to some NEW jeans! Feel me? It could mean cleaning out our cars. Here’s my litmus test: would you be ashamed to have a donor or your Executive Director or your mother-in-law ride-a-long with you today – this very moment? If the answer is “yes,” it’s time. Grab a trash bag, some Armor All wipes, and your vacuum attachments. You can do this. As they say, “Outer order, inner calm.” Now, don’t get overwhelmed. You don’t have to take on ALL of these ideas! Pick a couple of rooms, devote one hour on a Saturday for the next three weeks, or a couple of weeknights when your brain is tired – and you’re ready for a change of activities. You set the list and the pace. The older I get (or more seasoned, I should say), the more I gravitate to minimalism. If you’re looking for a great book on this topic, I highly recommend Essentialism: The disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown. It’s available in print and audio versions. So, if you feel like you don’t have time to sit and read, download the audio versi

    • 21 min
    3. The Honor of Thanking Donors

    3. The Honor of Thanking Donors

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    Gratitude. Here we are at the beginning of December. How crazy is that? This year is flying by!

    We just celebrated Thanksgiving here in the U.S. a couple of weeks ago.

    You’ve likely have been giving thanks for the joy and blessings in your life through your own traditions. You’ve gathered with family and friends (maybe in-person, maybe via Zoom). And you’ve likely eaten way more incredible food than you intended! I confess I did. 😊

    While the American Thanksgiving with some version of its Norman Rockwell-esque turkey dinner may be how you celebrate the holiday - people all around the world gather to give thanks each Autumn. Like us in North America, some nations even declare it an official holiday. Traditions and histories may differ from country to country, but gratitude and celebration are universal values. 

    You may have your own traditions and practices at your nonprofit organization to celebrate thankfulness and gratitude for your donors. You’ve hopefully held or are planning a thank-a-thon. Or you’re systematically calling to thank your most generous and most loyal supporters.  


    You’ve reminded them that they are not just giving money but truly changing lives. 
    You’ve conveyed how grateful you really are for them, strategically using some of Dr. Jen Shang’s identity-based nine moral adjectives: kind, caring, compassionate, helpful, friendly, fair, hard-working, generous, and honest.
    Of course, Jen is co-founder of the Institute for Sustainable Philanthropy and the world’s ONLY Philanthropic Psychologist.
    She purports, using these nine moral adjectives as we thank our donors, deeply connects with the donor’s identity of self – how they want to show up in the world. How they create congruence with who they say they are – and the actions they take in alignment with that identity. In our case, giving is the action congruent with kind, caring, generous, compassionate…
    Perhaps some of your Board Members or Development Committee Members joined in the gratitude fun by making calls. Whether you talked with supporters LIVE on the phone or left a warm, sincere voicemail, or even sent a handwritten note or text – you did it!! BRAVO! 

    I TRULY want to congratulate you on whatever actions you took to thank your donors and share the impact of their giving. While every nonprofit organization presumably aspires to meaningfully thank supporters, not every organization does. They just don’t! 

    I’m currently in a $5,000 pledge with one organization, to whom I’ve contributed more than $20,000 in lifetime giving. I’m a monthly donor to nearly a dozen other organizations and have been for five or more consecutive years now. And I give several more modest gifts to other organizations every year. I don’t consider myself a major donor. But I do consider myself a loyal donor to many. 


    So far this holiday season, I’ve not received any thank-you calls. 
    No handwritten notes or holiday cards yet. 
    I did receive one really great personalized thank-you video message from an ED earlier in the Fall. She sent the gratitude video within an hour of me giving an online gift to her great arts organization.
    Aside from that, it’s generally been a little disappointing. Not that I gave for the recognition, but as a fundraising professional, I know the importance of gratitude. Even so, I get it. Fundraising can be a pressure cooker. 

    Whether it’s because of time constraints, lack of resources, a mindset issue, or simply lacking an organizational culture of philanthropy. For a great majority of nonprofit organizations, expressing effective gratitude just does not happen. And donor retention rates reflect it!

    Let’s talk about gratitude and why it’s important to your fundraising success and sustainability. Dare I say, it may be THE MOST important tool in your fundraising success and sustainability toolkit. 

    JANUARY 2020 Article, “Tha

    • 27 min
    2. About Your Case for Support

    2. About Your Case for Support

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    Today we’re talking about your Case for Support. A critically important tool in every organization’s fundraising toolkit. 

    Fundraising legend, Jerry Panas had a lot to say about the Case for Support.

    “People give to the magic of an idea.”

    “People give to audacious dreams.”

    Of course - Jerry Panas, was an internationally recognized leader and best-selling author in the field of fundraising and philanthropy. He passed in 2018 at the age of 89. But his legacy and influence are alive and well.

    A case for support, in its simplest form, is a philanthropic investment prospectus. A document that tells prospective donors or supporters (if you prefer) what your nonprofit organization hopes to accomplish with the donor’s philanthropic gifts.

    A case for support may be for capital or a capacity-building campaign.

    It could be for a special project.

    It could be a case for support to sustain your day-to-day operations and delivery of your core services.

    A well-written case for support must answer the following questions:


    What you do and why it matters (in a compelling and emotional manner)
    Why are you the organization to address this matter?
    Why now?
    Why me? (your potential or probably donor)

    Recent research findings from the Institute for Sustainable Philanthropy, co-founded by Dr. Adrian Sargeant reports that 71% of survey participants believe they have a strong and compelling case for support. Of course, that means 29% do NOT believe they have a strong and compelling case for support. But for now, let’s focus on the 71% who say they DO.

    When the research drills deeper into the specific components of the case for support – respondents are not nearly as confident.

    57.9% of respondents believe their case for support focuses on “why we do this work” (meaning the clear and compelling reason for the work – why it matters)

    Only 55% believe their case for support answers the question, “Why are you the organization to address this matter?”  Your unique value proposition….

    Only 59% believe their case for support is deeply emotional.

    When we step back and really look at the numbers, something doesn’t compute. The average self-assessment rating on the individual components of the case for support is strong is 57.3%

    And yet, 71% of survey respondents believe they have a clear and compelling case for support.

    I’m not questioning the integrity of Dr. Sargeant’s research AT ALL. I’m questioning how accurately WE assess our own work. In this case, the quality of our case for support. Are we fooling ourselves?

    There’s a well know truism in the marketing and branding world that says, “It’s not who YOU say you are. It’s who THEY say you are.” Maybe this truism applies to our cases for support as well.

    Maybe we have an over-inflated assessment of how great our cases for support are. Maybe our cases for support really aren’t that great – and maybe it has a direct impact on our donor retention rates. Which are pretty dismal here in the U.S. On average we have about a 46% overall donor retention rate, and a 20% retention rate with first-time donors.

    Maybe it’s time to revisit our case for support with a beginner’s mind. Crafting every word like a love letter to our donors and probable supporters. Writing it like a promise to those we serve. Compelling. Passionate. Emotional. Feels right. Makes sense. Head and heart, together.

    Let’s revisit the key elements of your case for support. And some common mistakes.

    What we do and why it matters.

    Does your case for support focus on the past? Is it a historical dissertation on the founding of your organization? That’s not good. Like I always say, people applaud the past – but they FUND the future!

    Is it all about you? Your organization? “WE do this and WE do that. Aren’t WE great? Give us your money!”

    Your case for support should be about the intended im

    • 20 min
    1. 5 Important Lessons I Learned in 9 Years as a Chief Philanthropy Officer

    1. 5 Important Lessons I Learned in 9 Years as a Chief Philanthropy Officer

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    In today’s show, I’m going to share 5 important lessons I learned in 9 years as a Chief Philanthropy Officer.

    If you've attended a conference where I've spoken in the last several years, you've likely heard me talk about The Children's Center in Detroit. I've had the pleasure of working with The Children's Center for nearly 20 years. First as a fundraising trainer and coach. Then as a part-time contractor to cover staffing gaps. Then a few years later, I became an employee - and served as Chief Philanthropy Officer for 9 years.


    It was there that we tripled fundraising results in the first three years
    Emerged from the great recession in 2012
    And like you, began a pandemic journey we didn't see coming

    I resigned from The Children's Center six months ago to devote my full attention to my company, Fundraising Transformed. It's only now... six months later... that insights from those 9 years are emerging. As they say, you can't see the forest when you're in the trees.

    Today, I want to share five important lessons I learned in 9 years as a Chief Philanthropy Officer. Insights that I hope will help you be a more intentional, resilient, and effective fundraiser and leader.

    Lesson #1: Don't lose your fundraising superpower when you join the c-suite.
    It's an honor to sit at the c-suite table. As a Chief Philanthropy Officer, you're in a position to truly influence the impact on those your mission serves. It's on you to lead the fundraising strategy and the team that executes that strategic fundraising plan. It's on you to engage your CEO, Board, and Development Committee - to mobilize volunteer leadership to support fundraising. And you undoubtedly have your own top donor portfolio to manage as well. No problem, this is what you were made for. It was your fundraising success and passion for philanthropy that got you to the c-suite, in the first place. You got this!

    But I confess, nothing prepared me for the management accountabilities. Two or three-hour weekly executive leadership team meetings, half and full-day monthly meetings. Meetings about space planning. Meetings about real estate. Meetings about accreditation. Meetings about financials. Meetings about staff, systems, protocols, policies, and programs.

    Sometimes we had meetings about upcoming meetings. And this is NOT a condemnation against The Children's Center. This is part of being in the c-suite, and it happens everywhere. Organizations do not run themselves. This is the glamorous work at the top! Even as I joke about it, I recognize having a seat at the executive leadership table is a privilege. And I'm grateful to have had it for 9 years.

    But THIS part of being a Chief Philanthropy Officer shouldn't consume more time and energy than your primary role - raising money, building relationships, developing your team, equipping your CEO and Board to engage supporters or likely supporters. This is your unique value proposition. Your subject matter expertise. This is what your organization, (and certainly those you serve) are counting on YOU to deliver.

    Notice I said organizational management shouldn't consume more time and energy than philanthropy-related activities. Time and energy are two distinct things. Let's break down the distinction between time and energy:

    Time: the actual number of hours spent on organizational management compared to your time engaged in philanthropy-related priorities. This can be assessed quickly simply by color-coding your electronic calendar and committing to putting EVERYTHING in your calendar. This can be an 'aha moment for many.

    When you find the ratio of time spent on organizational management vs fundraising is out of balance, or the scale is tipping further than you like, you can self-correct or talk with your CEO about your time and priorities.

    You could suggest adjusting the executive leadership meeting agenda so that items you need to be present for are at the beginning of

    • 26 min
    Official Trailer

    Official Trailer

    Subscribe so you don't miss a single episode.

     

    Welcome to The Intentional Fundraiser, an original podcast by Fundraising Transformed.
    My name is Tammy Zonker, host of The Intentional Fundraiser podcast, and Founder and President of Fundraising Transformed, and contributing writer for NonProfit PRO.

    This is the podcast where I equip and empower amazing nonprofit fundraising pros just like you to transform your fundraising so you can transform the world. I'll be sharing fundraising insights, strategies, and inspiration you can use to skyrocket your fundraising results!

    We’ll also share new, focused, highly relevant interviews about the trends, best practices, and questions that matter most right now.

    Oh, and be warned - you may hear a rant every now and then. Just say'n.

    So you don't miss a single episode, subscribe now and you’ll be one of the first to know when I publish the newest episode.

    If you like my podcast and feel it would be helpful to others, please share it by forwarding this email to your friends! Take a listen and let me know what you think. And if you have a suggestion for a future topic, shoot me an email.

    I appreciate you, and what it takes to be an Intentional Fundraiser. Talk soon! Tammy

    P.S. If you like my podcast, please share it with someone who needs it!

     

    About Tammy Zonker
    Recognized as one of America’s Top 20 Fundraising Experts, Tammy is an inspiring international speaker and trainer in the discipline of transformational philanthropy. She has led, trained, and coached nonprofit social service organizations, private schools, colleges and universities, and healthcare organizations to raise more than a half-billion dollars, including a single gift of $27.1M.

    Tammy is a masterful storyteller, major gifts strategist, and fundraising expert. She’s also a certified AFP Master Trainer. Her passion for donor development and mission impact is contagious, inspiring, and transformational. She pours all of this expertise and passion into her training and speaking to equip and empower others to skyrocket their fundraising results.

    She and her partner, brand & marketing strategist R. Trent Thompson, were awarded the “Multichannel Campaign of the Year” and “Campaign of the Year” Gold Awards by Fundraising Success Magazine. She has served as adjunct faculty at Indiana University, technical editor for Wiley Publishing’s “Fundraising for Dummies” third edition, and served on Nonprofit Quarterly’s editorial advisory board.

    When Tammy is not speaking at conferences or fundraising, she’s leading webinars, online masterclasses, board, and development team retreats or training, workshops, and coaching her online membership community of Fundraising Transformers.

     

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    Connect with Tammy

    Can connect with Tammy on Twitter and Instagram at @tammyzonker, and on LinkedIn.

     

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    Have a suggestion for a future episode? shoot us an email.

     

    Want LIVE training with Tammy Zonker each month?

    Want on-demand access to Tammy’s growing library of fundraising CFRE-approved fundraising classes? Want to learn the same strategies and tools Tammy uses to help lead and train nonprofits around the world to collectively raise a half-billion dollars and counting?

    Want monthly help from Tammy, and other fundraising pros like you, with taking your fundraising results to the next level? Become a member of Fundraising Transformers! 

     

    • 1 min

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