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AFP Top Ten Fundraising Tips (Week of March 12, 2018): Fundraising Letters, Time Management, Making the Ask & More!

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Need some tips on how to do your job better? Or maybe just a reminder on some key skills, the insight on the latest research, and the latest, coolest ideas from the best minds in the fundraising profession?

Each week, AFP gathers the top blog posts, videos, articles and other resources to help you keep on top of latest trends and reach your fundraising goals. Here’s this week’s Top Ten:

1. What Michelle Obama Can Teach Us About Women’s Philanthropy (Lilly Family School of Philanthropy): The former First Lady also encapsulated six themes that women can embrace to fully engage and maximize their philanthropic efforts, including the importance of role models, confidence and being at the table.

2. It’s Time for Nonprofit Boards to Have a Conversation about Sexual Misconduct (The Nonprofit Quarterly): Boards need to go beyond compliance-driven policies and think more deeply about how to cultivate an organizational culture that refuses to tolerate harassment or exploitation of any kind.

3. Nervous About The Ask? (Movie Mondays): Do you get nervous before you make an ask? Do your board members or volunteers get nervous? You’re not alone. Here are some tips.

4. The Interplay between Fundraising, Time and You (LinkedIn-Martin Leifeld): While time belongs ultimately to donors, you as a fundraiser are challenged to use time effectively to raise funds for your organization. This video presentation examines the relationship between time and fundraising and offers you tips as to how to use time to raise funds and accomplish your goals.

5. Five Tips for Fundraising Letters that Get Results (LinkedIn-Rafael Magana): Every year your organization sends its members and friends a request for a financial contribution. You've been tapped to join the fundraising committee and asked to draft the annual appeal. You've never asked anyone for money before, so are uncertain about what you should say in the letter. Here are five suggestions to help you get started.

6. How to Gain a Massive Following on Instagram: 10 Proven Tactics To Grow Followers and Engagement (Buffer Social): Instagram now has more than 800 million monthly users and sky-high user engagement levels. Enough said!

7. New Report Shows Facebook Usage is in Decline (Social Media Today): Facebook usage is either down or flat in every demographic age group, gender, and ethnicity.  To clarify, Facebook is by far the most-used social media service, and is at no risk of losing that crown. But usage of other social tools is increasing, while Facebook is in decline.

8. Seven Tips to Create a Wildly Profitable Monthly Giving Program (Fired Up Fundraising): Monthly giving is a huge untapped revenue source for so many nonprofits. To help you nail your own monthly gifts, here are 7 quick tips for success.

9. What Ask String Works Best? (The Agitator): Few elements of direct response fundraising are as neglected as the crucial “ask string”—often at the cost of thousands or hundreds of thousands of dollars.

10. How (And When) To Tell A Finished Story (The Better Fundraising Co.): A finished story is where your organization has already done it’s work. The mistake most nonprofits make is that every story they tell is a finished story.