Archives for the month of: May, 2011

As summer gears up, I look forward to attending concerts at the Pritzker Pavilion in Chicago’s Grant Park.  These free concerts are generally packed—as many as 10,000 people in the seats and on the lawn to listen, not to some superstar act from out of town, but to our own homegrown Grant Park Orchestra.

Afterwards I, and thousands of others, walk around the marvelous open museum that is Millennium Park, again, free.  As it should be. Free, publicly supported arts are a vital recreational option during an economic crisis, or any time. Viewing something unhampered by a commercial motive is critical to a thinking society.

Unfortunately, I will be unable go to the Art Institute, a formerly dirt cheap, publicly funded museum operating rent free on public land, because they had to raise their entry fee to punitive rates. Read the rest of this entry »


The worst thing that ever happened to development was that baseball movie– “If you build it, they will come.”

From my observation, every Executive Director in Christendom has taken this as gospel and now believes that the simple power of their marvelousness will lead donors inexorably to their door. No other effort needed. Further, there’s a prevailing attitude that if “they” don’t come either they can’t be convinced, or aren’t worth the trouble. Never a thought given to either the product or the communication. Read the rest of this entry »

Most of the buzz on line is about using social media–Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, You Tube, and your blog–to support your marketing. But it can be an important part of your fundraising strategy as well. Read the rest of this entry »

You have no idea who is in your audience.

Small agencies in particular often make the mistake of focusing in on a couple of big donors, or of looking for angels, or of trying to get that big grant that will solve their problems. But just as important to your effort are all those $10 and $25 and $50 and $100 donors. Read the rest of this entry »

Did you enjoy “tweeting” your last proposal? Here’s another one, based on a branding strategy that focuses on the compelling difference that separates your product from the herd. Read the rest of this entry »