Are You Attending the DonorPerfect Community Network Conference?

RGBTake your fundraising skills to new heights at the fifth annual DonorPerfect Community Network Conference, September 15 – 16 in King of Prussia, PA. Whether you want to use DonorPerfect more effectively, are trying to launch a new social media campaign, or are looking for new ideas for fundraising, we’ve got just the sessions for you! It’s two full days of DonorPerfect training, fundraising best practices, networking with other professionals, and getting personalized help from our experts.

Free One-On-One Consultations

You can register for a free one-on-one consultation with a member of our staff to learn best practices, explore a new feature, or overcome a challenge you’ve been facing. Did we mention that you can even get a free web design consultation by our expert designers? If you don’t know where to start, we can show you how to get the most from your website and WebLink form. Once registered, we’ll send you the information to sign up for your free consultation.

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Extend Your Stay for Even Deeper Training

This optional third-day workshop on September 17 will have you interacting with others using DonorPerfect, learning and applying best practices, and discussing several hot topics in-depth. You will come away with thought-provoking ideas, commonly used strategies, and the tools to begin applying everything that you learn.

Register and Save Before July 31

Take advantage of our Early Bird offer to save on your registration! This offer is only available through July 31, 2014.

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If you have any questions, visit cnc.donorperfect.com or email conference@donorperfect.com.

Sam Stortz
by Sam Stortz

Jul 23 14

Training Tracks NOW Available to Match Your Needs

This post is from Eleanor Stasio, Implementation & Training Manager for SofterWare (developer of DonorPerfect). 

In the Wizard of Oz, the yellow brick road functions as a guide for Dorothy to follow, as it leads her to Emerald City, and the powerful Wizard. Wouldn’t it be nice if everything in life had a yellow brick road? Well, now DonorPerfect has its own Yellow Brick Road, known as Training Tracks. Whether you have just purchased DonorPerfect or you have a new employee starting, you want to know where to start and what to do first. Our new Training Tracks help pave the road to help you easily know what comes next.
YellowBrickRoadOur professional training staff has developed 5 new training packages, from just needing to learn the basics to becoming a power user. Plus, we have added a new Implementation Tab on our website. We want to help you put the key principles of DonorPerfect to work for your Nonprofit. Remember, there’s no place like home, and with a click of a mouse you will be on your way to becoming a wizard in knowing DonorPerfect.

by sgoldenberg

Jul 11 14

Top 10 Special Event Tips that Stand the Test of Time

This post is from Jon Biedermann, Vice President of Fundraising Solutions for DonorPerfect. 

Last month I had the pleasure of helping organize the Player’s Charity Championship IV, a virtual golf tournament/fundraising event that has been held about once every four years.

Virtual Golf, you say?  Yes, you heard that right- for the last 8+ years I have been helping Virtual Golfers for UnderDogs, an actual 501c organization which raises funds for under-served nonprofit organizations.

We raise funds by holding a special fundraising tournament once every approximately 4 years, where over 100 people gather from across the country to compete in a “PGA” style golf tournament- you can win cash and prizes.  But instead of hitting a golf ball with a club, these professionals (many make a real living playing year round!), swing and hit a trackball that creates their shots around a virtual golf course on the screen.  It’s called Golden Tee, the most successful coin operated video game in history, even more successful than Pac-Man!

$42,296.88 raised for charity from just 83 golfers.  That's me in the center (blue cap on).  The guy in the pink suit dared his donors to give, and if they did he would wear that ridiculous outfit.  Guess who won?

$42,296.88 raised for charity from just 83 golfers. That’s me in the
center (blue cap on). The guy in the pink suit dared his donors to give,
and if they did he would wear that ridiculous outfit. Guess who won?

And these guys are good.  For just 18 holes, scores average -24 under par.  Yes, that’s right- 24 strokes under par.

In the beginning, I was one of these professionals, earning some meaningful money and even making a World Championship in 2004.  Alas, time, work, and family obligations led me to hang up my virtual clubs, but I’m still involved with the charity side.

And we raise money- over the years we’ve raised over $150,000 for charities.

Last month, our fourth installment of the Players Charity Championship raised over $42,000!  Naturally, we used a combination of DonorPerfect, WebLink, and DonorPages to drive crowd funding websites for each of the golfers.  You can visit the main event website here, my own personal page is here (why not make a donation?).

While the name and the cause might be a little different from your typical special event, almost everything else was the same.  This included coordinating planning committees, volunteers, vendors, donation collections, and of course running the actual event itself.

Here are the top 10 lessons I continue to learn even after doing this for years:

  1. It’s never to early to start planning.  We started 9 months prior, and we could have used an additional 2-3 months.
  2. Your volunteers will change over time.  People get interested, but then have to leave.  Plan on attrition ahead of time so you don’t get upset.
  3. Only show the results vs. the goal when you have raised at least 10%-15% of the total.  People like to think that there are “other people at the party”, and it’s a phenomenon called ‘social proof’.  (And is the same reason why people will wait in their cars to attend a party before they see other people show up…no one wants to be the first to a party, or in this case the first to donate)
  4. It is much more important to release a press release correctly than to write a press release correctly.
  5. If a volunteer makes a mistake, never, ever, correct them during the event.  Instead, have another volunteer correct the mistake.
  6. If a volunteer offers an idea and it’s good, have them run it and get out of the way- no one likes a micro-manager and you’ll get better results.  If it’s not good, let them know you need to talk to others first.
  7. Always over-estimate the cost of everything.  Always under-estimate your revenue.
  8. Speak directly into the microphone where your lips almost touch it.  If it’s too loud for you, it’s likely perfect for the majority of attendees and the back of the room.
  9. Keep your remarks short.  Brevity is the soul of wit.  It’s easy to lose the crowd when any one speaker talks for longer than 90 seconds.
  10. When the event is over, send an immediate thank you summary to your constituents.  They want to know how their efforts made a difference.

Good luck with your future events!

by sgoldenberg

Jul 9 14

A NEW, More Intuitive WebLink Menu! (pt. 3 of 3)

Easy and intuitive...

We’re pleased to introduce a new, better-organized, and more intuitive WebLink Form Administration Menu!

The new menu includes fewer sections, and various menu options have been renamed to improve clarity and promote ease-of-use!

The most important and most frequently used options are now at the top of the list, under “The Basics.” This section of the menu provides a step-by-step approach to the essential steps for getting your form up and running.

The second section of the menu enables you to add and edit fields and items, and less frequently used options are included in the third section.

For now, you’ll be able to toggle back and forth between the two menus to get comfortable. The complete change to the new, more intuitive menu will be go into effect at the end of August. This concludes our three-part series of WebLink enhancements to kick off the summer. You can view our first and second posts from June if you missed them.

Have a look at the slider below for a glimpse of the menu and some of the improvements, along with quick instructions on how to switch to the new version as soon as it’s released on July 9th!

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Full Release Notes are available in our Knowledgebase.

Andy Busovsky
by Andy Busovsky

Jul 3 14

Announcing Email Receipts for Everybody!

DPO_Receipts_for_Everybody

It’s true; everybody with DonorPerfect will have the ability to send email receipts on June 30 with no changes to your pricing! In the next release of DonorPerfect, we are upgrading all accounts to use the same Receipting platform (we used to call it 2.0) to send acknowledgements. From your feedback, we’ve found that the new platform is easier to use and more intuitive. Plus, it has some great features that everyone should enjoy.

When we first introduced email receipts in 2010, we maintained both version 1.0 and 2.0, but were only able to add new features to 2.0 due to its design. Since then, we’ve been maintaining both versions. But, that took twice as long to program, test, and even prevented us from adding some features that would benefit everybody. To give everyone the best Receipting experience in DonorPerfect, we decided to merge the two versions into one.

Everything You Need to Know: Receipting 101 Knowledgebase Series

To help you learn everything there is to know, we created a Receipting 101 series in our Knowledgebase. Here, you will find fresh new videos, new articles, and a streamlined navigation menu between articles. It’s your one-stop shopping for setting up, emailing, downloading, and even merging your acknowledgements.

Only Want to Send Letter Acknowledgements?

If you only need to send letter receipts, there’s nothing further you need to do. For those of you who were upgraded to the new Receipts, you will only send letter receipts by default (as you do today). For information on the changes to the new Receipting, see this Knowledgebase article or the following FREE webinars below.

FREE Training Sessions on the New Receipting Read More…

Josh Nelson
by Josh Nelson

Jun 20 14