Is Now the Right Time for a Planned Giving Conversation? Yes, and Here’s Why.

No matter what’s happening in the world, we humans are wired to seek connection, continuation and control in our lives. So when clients or colleagues ask if it’s appropriate or “right” to continue talking about planned giving in light of the continued pandemic and societal unease, I say yes. Continue the conversations, but be completely in tune with what donors are saying, and not saying, with more sensitivity and empathy and less leaning toward gift acquisition. During your next planned giving conversation, remember these five wise estate planning approaches that are easy to implement, yet softly advance the gifting process. Continue reading Is Now the Right Time for a Planned Giving Conversation? Yes, and Here’s Why.

3 Free Fundraising Webinars You Need to Watch

No matter what school looks like this year, the end of summer break means a renewed focus on learning—not only for the kiddos in our lives, but for us too. Continued learning helps us all develop new skills and stay at the top of our game. Whether these webinars are new to you or you just need a refresher, check them out as you’re designing your own never-stop-improving e-learning curriculum. Continue reading 3 Free Fundraising Webinars You Need to Watch

7 of the Most Frequently Asked Questions on Social Media for Nonprofits

As a planned giving marketing company, we field a lot of questions about how nonprofits can utilize social and how planned giving can fit into that social strategy—especially these days. Knowing that there are a lot of questions circling around the use of social in today’s environment, Stelter’s Marketing Communications Specialist, Aimee Menhusen, invited me and Stelter’s Creative Director and Marketing Director, Zach Christensen, to a little Zoom Q&A on social media best practices. We put our heads together to come up with this list of FAQs to share. Enjoy! Continue reading 7 of the Most Frequently Asked Questions on Social Media for Nonprofits

How to Design the Perfect Marketing Strategy

Kathryn W. Miree, President of Kathryn W. Miree & Associates, Inc., recently presented “Designing the Perfect Marketing Strategy for Your Planned Giving Program” as part of Stelter’s monthly webinar series. It’s a timely webinar, filled with practical tips for refining or creating your planned giving marketing plans. Kathryn covers audience segmentation and messaging, as well as the importance of integrating planned giving into an overall development communications plan. The webinar has many valuable takeaways, and today I’m excited to share a few of my favorites. Continue reading How to Design the Perfect Marketing Strategy

Engaging Donors During Quarantine: Tips for Successful Marketing & Messaging

How can your nonprofit continue to deliver content that sparks a feeling of connection, while still practicing social distancing for months on end? Before we dig into different strategies for quarantine marketing success, let’s start with the importance of planned giving during a crisis. Continue reading Engaging Donors During Quarantine: Tips for Successful Marketing & Messaging

FREE! CARES Act Video Tutorial for Your Donors

The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act shifted the way donors can support charities in 2020. The changes are unprecedented…and so is the confusion around it. Here’s a new way to explain the law: This free video, featuring attorney Lynn Gaumer, who has covered the charitable sector for 25+ years, is yours to use across your web and digital platforms.Continue reading FREE! CARES Act Video Tutorial for Your Donors

Giving USA 2020: Inside the Numbers and a Look Ahead

Giving USA released its 2020 annual report last week, but it just felt, well, different. Perhaps you may even feel that it is irrelevant. So much has changed in the first six months of 2020. Let’s take a brief look into the numbers and, more importantly, let’s look ahead to see how Americans are responding and giving this year. Continue reading Giving USA 2020: Inside the Numbers and a Look Ahead

3 Critical Factors Impacting Donor Mindset Today

The only constant is change. -Heraclitus I think we can all agree that this sentiment has never rung more true than it does today. Whether it’s change we plan for or change we don’t plan for, change is the only constant. The COVID-19 pandemic, corresponding economic impact and the sweeping national reflection on racial inequality haveContinue reading 3 Critical Factors Impacting Donor Mindset Today

[FREE DOWNLOAD] Two-Life CGA Suggested Maximum Rate Schedules Are Here

The American Council on Gift Annuities rates committee has revealed a new schedule of suggested maximum two-life charitable gift annuity (CGA) rates for gifts established on or after July 1, 2020. The new two-life rates are 0.3% to 0.5% lower than the current rates. Download our sample donor letter to reach out to those who may be interested in making a gift before July 1 to take advantage of the current rates. Continue reading [FREE DOWNLOAD] Two-Life CGA Suggested Maximum Rate Schedules Are Here

5 Storytelling Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

Stories are how we share our culture, pass down our traditions and influence others. We are literally hardwired for storytelling. Perfect for fundraising, right? But if the formula is so simple—character + conflict + resourcefulness = resolution—then why don’t more stories resonate? Here are five mistakes that might be in the way. Continue reading 5 Storytelling Mistakes (And How to Avoid Them)

Breaking News: ACGA Releases New Suggested Maximum Single-Life Rate Schedules [FREE DOWNLOAD]

The American Council on Gift Annuities rates committee has revealed a new schedule of suggested maximum single-life charitable gift annuity (CGA) rates for gifts established on or after July 1, 2020. Check out our chart of the new rates and download our sample donor letter to reach out to those who may be interested in making a gift before July 1 to take advantage of the current rates. Continue reading Breaking News: ACGA Releases New Suggested Maximum Single-Life Rate Schedules [FREE DOWNLOAD]

Stelter Planned Giving Pulse Survey #2: 3 Uplifting Discoveries That Made Us Smile

Since March, The Stelter Company has been polling nonprofits across the country that have established planned giving programs to learn how the pandemic is affecting their efforts. Last week, we released our Planned Giving Pulse Survey #2, which captures the latest impact on nonprofit marketing programs, job stability and planned giving budgets nationwide. The results are both inspiring and sobering. Continue reading Stelter Planned Giving Pulse Survey #2: 3 Uplifting Discoveries That Made Us Smile

[FREE DOWNLOAD] How to Let Your Donors Know About the New Charitable Gift Annuity Rates

Stelter’s Senior Gift Planning Consultant, Lynn Gaumer, J.D., is back to share an update on the new schedule of CGA rates. We recommend you reach out now to your donors who may be interested in making a gift before July 1 to take advantage of the current rates. To assist you with this, we are providing a letter that you can customize and use for your donor communications. Continue reading [FREE DOWNLOAD] How to Let Your Donors Know About the New Charitable Gift Annuity Rates

CGA Program Best Practices You Need to Know: A Review of the ACGA/CGP CGA Survey

A new survey shares best practices that all charities can follow for charitable gift annuity programs. This survey—the first of its kind—was conducted jointly by the American Council on Gift Annuities (ACGA) and the National Association of Charitable Gift Planners (CGP). Here to breakdown three main takeaways from the survey is Lynn Gaumer, J.D., Stelter’s Sr. Gift Planning Consultant. Continue reading CGA Program Best Practices You Need to Know: A Review of the ACGA/CGP CGA Survey

Key Takeaways From the First-Ever Virtual ACGA Conference

Last week, many fundraisers from across the country gathered in the comfort of their own homes and logged in to the first virtual ACGA Conference. The COVID-19 pandemic was top of mind and a common thread in many presentations. Speakers looked to past pandemics and economic downturns for guidance on what charitable giving will look like this year, addressed current concerns and looked to the future. Here are a few key takeaways from Stelter’s Executive Vice President Jeremy Stelter and Senior Gift Planning Consultant Lynn Gaumer, J.D. Continue reading Key Takeaways From the First-Ever Virtual ACGA Conference

3 Must-Haves for Stewarding Donors Successfully

Our partnership with nearly 1,500 nonprofits involves helping them educate donors about planned giving and offering donors the opportunity to act on making a planned gift easily. And while it is extremely important to stay top-of-mind with your donors during this time, we know that in the current environment this messaging needs to change. You must pivot to a message of stewardship. Reviewing stewardship campaigns Stelter has produced for our clients over the past year, there are three things in common that helped lead to their success. Continue reading 3 Must-Haves for Stewarding Donors Successfully

3 Tips on How to Engage Donors When Face-to-Face Isn’t Possible

Face-to-face donor meetings are on an indefinite hold—which means major and planned gift officers across the country are finding themselves grounded from the thing they love to do most. So where do you go from here, to continue to engage your portfolio, extend your donor discovery or even identify new individuals for cultivation? Continue reading 3 Tips on How to Engage Donors When Face-to-Face Isn’t Possible

Tips on Isolation From Someone Who Couldn’t Go Outside

When you were younger, did you ever dream of becoming an astronaut? Perhaps you wanted to boldly go where no person had gone before, which makes sense as you eventually landed on fundraising. But did you ever give any thought to the fact that astronauts spend extraordinary amounts of time inside? A situation many of us are finding ourselves in right now. Here are my three key takeaways from an astronaut and isolation expert:Continue reading Tips on Isolation From Someone Who Couldn’t Go Outside

3 Themes From the First-Ever AFP ICON VIRTUAL Conference

With our world upside down and events all around us being canceled, new opportunities to share and connect are emerging.  Earlier this week, nearly 1,000 fundraisers gathered around their own respective viewing devices for the first-ever AFP ICON VIRTUAL Conference—including Danny Herzberg, Stelter Regional Account Representative. I sat down with Danny to hear his biggest takeaways from the conference. Continue reading 3 Themes From the First-Ever AFP ICON VIRTUAL Conference

[FREE DOWNLOAD] Let Your Donors Know About the New Tax Incentives

The president has signed into law the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. This is designed to help taxpayers, businesses and nonprofits facing economic hardship in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic and economic downturn. Here are several key provisions of the CARES Act that relate to the nonprofit sector: Continue reading [FREE DOWNLOAD] Let Your Donors Know About the New Tax Incentives

[FREE WHITE PAPER] Women & Giving: A Marketing Roadmap

The Stelter Company’s most recent research, Women & Giving: A Marketing Roadmap, showcases the differences that surface between men and women—differences related to giving, finances and self-image. I’m here today to share some findings that can help your nonprofit’s planned giving marketing program. Continue reading [FREE WHITE PAPER] Women & Giving: A Marketing Roadmap

[FREE DOWNLOAD] How to Let Your Donors Know About the New Charitable Gift Annuity Rates

The American Council on Gift Annuities recently revealed a new schedule of suggested maximum gift annuity rates for gifts established on or after Jan. 1, 2020. Score your free donor letter and customize it for your nonprofit’s CGA communications. Continue reading [FREE DOWNLOAD] How to Let Your Donors Know About the New Charitable Gift Annuity Rates

Read These: The Best Quotes to Prepare You for International Day of Charity

September 5 is International Day of Charity, designated by the United Nations General Assembly as a day to shine a light on charity-related activities worldwide. On this day, individuals, nonprofits and volunteer organizations raise awareness, organize special events and build support for charitable works. Continue reading Read These: The Best Quotes to Prepare You for International Day of Charity

What You Need To Know Now to Promote, Receive and Acknowledge a DAF Gift

Today we welcome back a special guest on the blog: Stelter Senior Technical Consultant, Lynn Gaumer, J.D. Lynn returns to share her insights on promoting, receiving and acknowledging donor advised fund gifts. Donor advised funds date back to the Great Depression, yet they were not actively promoted until the early 1990s when Fidelity established FidelityContinue reading What You Need To Know Now to Promote, Receive and Acknowledge a DAF Gift

How to Cultivate Donor Loyalty: 5 Marketing Tips

A friend of mine, a retired hospice-facility fundraiser, recently made a sizable gift to a local women’s shelter. But she never received an acknowledgment or thank you. She was even told, “No thanks, we’ve got it covered,” when she volunteered to write their thank you notes. Needless to say, she’s hesitant to go any furtherContinue reading How to Cultivate Donor Loyalty: 5 Marketing Tips

What Kind of Donor Journey Are You Delivering?

Earlier this year, I shared the primary three stages of the donor journey. Today, I’m back with the final two stages. As you may recall, the donor’s journey starts off similarly to the buyer’s journey—but  can conclude with two additional destinations: donation and believer. Your nonprofit’s ultimate goal is to help your donors reach theContinue reading What Kind of Donor Journey Are You Delivering?

10 Fundraising Blogs (And a Few Podcasts) You’ll Love

 “A rising tide lifts all boats.” -John F. Kennedy Historically, this phrase was used referring to the economy. Today, I can’t help but apply it to our fundraising world, in that a good outcome—and good information—benefits us all. (This logic is a large part of why we’ve provided our research and webinars free of chargeContinue reading 10 Fundraising Blogs (And a Few Podcasts) You’ll Love

If Your Board Is Bored with Planned Giving Try These 5 Reality Checks

You’ve got a planned giving program in place. Check. You’ve amped up your marketing and generated a healthy pipeline of planned gift prospects. Check. Check. But, you soon realize, you’ve also got a board that thinks planned giving is too hard to understand or simply not an organizational priority. They check out whenever the subjectContinue reading If Your Board Is Bored with Planned Giving Try These 5 Reality Checks

Top 3 Webinars of 2018

We are back. After a long holiday weekend, recharging with family and friends, I hope you are feeling ready to take on 2019.

Now, I could talk about how yet another year has come and gone all too quickly. I could talk about how much we’ve learned and how our industry has changed over the course of 2018, which is all important. But today, I’d rather show you […] Continue reading Top 3 Webinars of 2018

How to Fill Your Baskets with Funding Support

We’ve all heard the phrase, ”Don’t put all your eggs in one basket!” The meaning behind this old saying: Don’t put all your efforts into one thing because you could lose everything else—and be left with nothing altogether. The same logic applies to fundraising. While we at Stelter spend majority of our time in theContinue reading How to Fill Your Baskets with Funding Support

‘Giving USA 2018’: Inside the Numbers

Today we welcome back a special guest on the blog: Stelter’s Senior Technical Consultant, Lynn Gaumer, J.D. Lynn returns to give us her analysis on Giving USA’s 2018 numbers.  Why Now Is the Time to Market Planned Giving Between individual donations, corporate donations, bequests and foundation giving, Americans gave a record $410.02 billion in 2017.Continue reading ‘Giving USA 2018’: Inside the Numbers

3 Important Things I Learned from My Father, Larry Stelter

Working with my dad, Larry Stelter, has definitely been a unique family experience—one that I wouldn’t change for the world. Growing up, I assumed that everyone worked countless hours and frequently traveled across the country. My dad never slowed down, and still truly hasn’t. When I was younger, I hoped to grow up to beContinue reading 3 Important Things I Learned from My Father, Larry Stelter

‘Giving USA 2018’: Banner Year for Philanthropy

410.02 billion dollars. That is 2017’s record-breaking number for charitable giving, reported by Giving USA 2018. As you may recall, in their 2017 report, the Giving USA Foundation stated that 2016 reached new philanthropic heights with an impressive $390.05 billion in charitable giving. 2017, not to be outdone, made history—yet again— with their figure generouslyContinue reading ‘Giving USA 2018’: Banner Year for Philanthropy

4 Things a Cover Letter Is (And 1 Thing It Isn’t)

In her continuing series, we welcome special guest, Stelter Editorial Director, Katie Parker. Done right, an 8.5×11-inch piece of paper manages an incredible amount of work in your marketing communications. Here are a few powerful things a cover letter can do for your fundraising goals…and one thing it can’t. A cover letter IS: 1. PersonalContinue reading 4 Things a Cover Letter Is (And 1 Thing It Isn’t)

Jeremy and Nathan Stelter sit down for a planned giving chat

A Planned Giving Conversation Between Stelter Brothers

A few weeks ago, my brother Jeremy and I met up at the American Council on Gift Annuities Conference in Seattle. Jeremy is Stelter’s director of business development for the Western U.S. and has helped fundraising professionals grow their gift planning programs through research-based marketing strategies for more than 15 years. While together, we talkedContinue reading A Planned Giving Conversation Between Stelter Brothers

Stelter’s Volunteers: Helping Our Iowa Community

April is National Volunteer Month. For those of you who work in the nonprofit world everyday, volunteers are your lifeline. We can talk all day about targeted campaigns, donor lists and multichannel marketing, but without volunteers to go out into our communities, advocate your mission and support you with their time and service, you’d beContinue reading Stelter’s Volunteers: Helping Our Iowa Community