Thousand Oaks shooting: Warriors’ Steve Kerr praises “Enough” initiative

first_imgLOS ANGELES — Warriors coach Steve Kerr praised NBA Commissioner Adam Silver for backing the Los Angeles Lakers, Atlanta Hawks and Milwaukee Bucks for their role in wearing “Enough” T-Shirts that listed the victims in the recent Thousand Oaks shooting.“It was a great show of unity in the NBA, and a statement that we have to address this issue as a country,” Kerr said before the Warriors played the Clippers on Monday. “Our government has to address it. We can’t just keep spewing out the same …last_img

Skills hub for trainee accountants

first_img19 July 2012 Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel launched a business hub and skills programme for unemployed accounting graduates in Kyalami, north of Johannesburg, on Wednesday.He said the initiative would go a long way to addressing the shortage of accountants in the South African economy.“[This] brings together a range of stakeholders who will contribute to increasing skills, creating jobs and supporting small business development.”Through a partnership with the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (Saica), the initiative would provide training to unemployed accounting graduates, to enhance their practical skills and workplace readiness.A total of R6-million had been set aside by the department of economic development for the first year, in which 50 graduates would be trained.The second group of graduates would start at the beginning of 2013.The first intake would all hold BCom Accounting or equivalent qualifications.They would be trained by Guarantee Trust in life skills and technical skills, with simulated real work in real companies.Graduates to work at business hubSaica would set up a business hub offering back-office support to black entrepreneurs with an annual turnover of about R10-million.Graduates from the programme would work at the hub, providing accounting support to the businesses.This would also be done through a partnership with the new Small Enterprise Finance Agency.Fifteen of the graduates from the programme would be placed at the hub and the rest in various companies across the country.Patel said the business hub and skills programme would help the government’s efforts to create five-million jobs by 2020, as set out in the New Growth Path.“As we celebrate Mandela Day today, we must recognise that it is this kind of public interest role that we need more organisations to play, as it contributes towards the kind of society that we are striving for,” he said.Saica CEO Matsobane Matlwa said training would bridge the gap between educational qualifications and what the industry needed.“We are committed to collaborating with government in ensuring that all South Africans can have an opportunity to really participate and increase the economy of the country, by ensuring that they have a decent living,” he said.Matlwa said Saica’s strategic partner Softline Pastel would fund the set-up costs of the business hub and provide accounting software.Sapalast_img read more

Build Your House (file)…and Keep It Tidy, Too

first_imgDraw a map. Create a flowchart. Put together some document with all of your database fields and the naming conventions for those fields. Clean up duplicate records often. If you have the time to do this regularly, it can save you time in the future.Essentially the most important ingredient to keeping your housefile (list) clean is to dust it regularly. Empower your organization by coming up with a clear and outlined process of how you collect and store your data. Doing so will allow you keep a tidy housefile that is easy to report on and analyze. Make sure all individuals in your organization have that document. This will ensure that everyone in your organization will use the same naming conventions and mapping process when creating the online forms you use to collect constituents’ information. Source: Connection Cafecenter_img If you have uniform response options you want to have listed on multiple choice questions (that are going to be used on many of your online forms), decide upon the answer options and make sure everyone in your organization has a document outlining those response options. Building your housefile (list) is one of the key ingredients in developing a strong online presence. It is important to welcome a constant flow of constituents into your online home. But, what are the next steps in maintaining that list? Once you have a good list going, it is vital to keep that list clean, dust and clutter-free. Mom always told you to keep your room clean. Why should your constituent list be any different?Here are some tips to keeping a clean list:Decide on what data you want to collect and how you want it to be organized in your database. For example, if you want to have a field in your database to store information on constituents’ pets’ names, decide where you want that information to live in the database and how you want to get it there.last_img read more

Create an Online Fundraising Plan: Know Your Numbers

first_imgEmpathetic. Donor-centric. Sympathetic. Your marketing communications are “ticking” along as they should be. But, as we’re all painfully aware, the right-side of the  brain just loves piping in to talk about numbers, figures, trends and goals.Instead of telling that portion of the brain to buzz off (as I often do), use it to create the fourth and final piece of your online fundraising plan: The Numbers. Below, check out our tips for getting a jump on mapping what your numbers look like now and what you hope they look like later:Budget Tips:Planning to raise money online? Of course you are! Why else would you be developing an online fundraising plan? Be sure to build into your budget what you plan to spend for donation processing. For instance, you can check out our own DonateNow service–great value for a price that won’t eat up your budget.Fixing up your website? Be realistic about the features you need versus the features you want. Set up your budget ahead of time, and don’t be distracted by shiny objects: your website is a tool and a resource, not a fireworks show.Thinking about advertising? If you’re considering developing banner ads or other paid online outreach, remember to keep in mind the various items you’re paying for: design, development and placement costs.Hiring extra help? You may be planning to use the talents of a copywriter for your website or consultant to help you out. Those folks often like to get paid–go figure. And in planning this line item, do some brainstorming about how you might cut costs: Maybe a graphic designer (could be a student) will donate time or a communications intern can develop testimonials for your website.Tracking, Benchmarking, Reporting Tips:DonateNow. Are you a DonateNow customer? If so, don’t forget to log into your account to check out your donor reports. You can even track your campaigns by evaluating the tracking codes for different DonateNow buttons on your site and in your emails. Email messaging. Determine an evaluation schedule for monitoring your e-communications. Will you track the number of donors (past and new) directly tied to your email communications? Monitor giving levels of donors receiving your emails versus those who are not.Website traffic. Sign up for Google Analytics to evaluate site traffic. Work language into your online fundraising plan about how you will determine which content is most appealing and how you will increase visibility of that content while simultaneously finding a way to tie in giving opportunities.Testing. Not happy with your fundraising results? Test out new ideas! Vary your email messaging and mix around your website a bit. Testing is a vital piece of the puzzle when working to improve your numbers!last_img read more

Benefit exchange week finale: credibility

first_imgHere’s the last of my thoughts, pulled from my book, on benefit exchanges. Don’t forget: you can’t ask for action without them!If we make promises about our nonprofit, especially bold ones, we need to support them. We don’t need to quantify every reward or produce scientific evidence for every point we propose. We simply need to show that our benefit exchange is credible. In other words, we need to ensure that the action we ask for is feasible and the reward we offer is possible.Facts and figures are one approach to sounding reliable, but the problem is that they are quickly forgotten. Also, a lot of people don’t trust them. We need to make statistics as personal as possible so they will be remembered and believed. The average person won’t recall how many pounds of nitrates run off into a river or the concentration of E. coli in parts per million in an aquifer, but they will remember the poop in the tap water.A slew of psychological studies have shown that vivid personal stories are incredibly convincing, far more so than quantifiable statistics. I make many decisions about the products I buy, the books I read, and the places I go based on recommendations from people I respect. I think the person who offers the testimonial or stars in the success story we use is as important as the story itself. The right messengers lend great credibility to our claims. We should choose messengers who are known or respected by our audience or their immediate peers. We can also add credibility to our message by convincing our audience it can take action without too much effort and fuss. If an action seems like a big undertaking, that perception will undermine the idea that rewards are attainable. For this reason a lot of private-sector advertising has the word easy in it. It’s also why people love remote controls and drive-through windows. We don’t want to have to work too hard to get what we want.Another approach is showing our audience members that many people like them are taking the action. Social psychologists and marketing experts talk about the power of “social norms” or “social proof.” Social proof is the powerful idea that if we believe everyone is acting in a certain way, we’re likely to act that way too. We’re conformists by nature, and we take our cues about how to think and what to do from those around us.last_img read more

ePhilanthropy Code of Ethics

first_imgNetwork for Good exists to foster the effective and safe use of the Internet for philanthropic purposes.  In its effort to promote high ethical standards in online fundraising and nonprofit marketing, and to build trust among contributors in making online transactions and contributions with the charity of their choice, this code is being offered as a guide to all who share this goal. Contributors are encouraged to be aware of non-internet related fundraising practices that fall outside the scope of this Code.Section A: Philanthropic ExperienceClearly and specifically display and describe the organization’s identity on the organization’s website;Employ practices on the website that exhibit integrity, honesty, and truthfulness and seek to safeguard the public trust.Section B: Privacy and SecuritySeek to inspire trust in every online transaction;Prominently display the opportunity for supporters to have their names removed from lists that are sold to, rented to, or exchanged with other organizations;Conduct online transactions through a system that employs high-level security technology to protect the donor’s personal information for both internal and external authorized use;Provide either an ‘opt in’ and ‘opt out’ mechanism to prevent unsolicited communications or solicitations by organizations that obtain email addresses directly from the donor. Should lists be rented or exchanged, only those verified as having been obtained through donors or prospects ‘opting in’ will be used by a charity;Protect the interests and privacy of individuals interacting with their website;Provide a clear, prominent and easily accessible privacy policy on its website telling visitors, at a minimum, what information is being collected, how it is being collected, how it can be updated or removed, how this information will be used and who has access to the data.Section C: DisclosuresDisclose the identity of the organization or provider processing an online transaction;Guarantee that the name, logo and likeness of all parties to an online transaction belong to the party and will not be used without express permission;Maintain all appropriate governmental and regulatory designations or certifications;Provide both online and offline contact information.Section D: TransactionsEnsure contributions are used to support the activities of the organization to which they were donated;Ensure that legal control of contributions or proceeds from online transactions are transferred directly to the charity or expedited in the fastest possible way;Companies providing online services to charities will provide clear and full communication with the charity on all aspects of donor transactions, including the accurate and timely transmission of data related to online transactions;Stay informed regarding the best methods to ensure the ethical, secure and private nature of online ePhilanthropy transactions;Adhere to the spirit as well as the letter of all applicable laws and regulations, including, but not limited to, charity solicitation and tax laws;Ensure that all services, recognition and other transactions promised on a website, in consideration of gift or transaction, will be fulfilled on a timely basis;Disclose to the donor the nature of the relationship between the organization processing the gift or transaction and the charity intended to benefit from the gift.last_img read more

Four Tips on How to Use Email Marketing During a Down Economy

first_imgWhile the economic news may not be the cheeriest these days, we’ve got some good news for you about the return you’ll get on those email marketing dollars. The smart folks at the DMA (that’s the Direct Marketing Association) reported that in 2007, email marketing returned about $48 for every dollar invested, the highest of all the marketing channels out there.With the pittance it costs to send an email, you get all three of a marketer’s favorite things-relevant messages, brand appeal and the ability to measure it all. So keep up the great work you’re already doing with email, and consider these five tips as well:Use email to reduce other costs. On top of being cost-effective, email can help cut costs elsewhere. Look at what you’re currently printing-holiday cards, birthday postcards, invitations-and ask yourself, “Could this be emailed instead?” (Whoa, not out loud. There are better office nicknames than The Postcard Whisperer.)Save time, too, with trigger emails that automatically welcome new subscribers or follow up around important dates. When you’re no longer handling that stuff manually, you’ll have more time to focus on higher revenue, better service or more precise dart-throwing. Hey, we all have our priorities.Use email to get valuable information. Everybody’s crunching the numbers a little more diligently right now, looking for trends, patterns, or, in freak cases, practice with long division. Some of the most valuable statistics to watch are the response numbers that roll in after you send a campaign. A dedicated review of ’em will help you and your team spot stand-out content or subscribers who’d likely respond well to follow-up-all valuable information to apply to future campaigns.Use email to build brand loyalty. In a downturn, keeping your supporters happy and engaged is more important than ever. With regular email campaigns, you’ve already got an easy, friendly way to remind your subscribers why they know and love you. In your emails, make a point to highlight your organization’s best qualities. Reward your most loyal supporters with a coupon you had donated by a sponsor or send a special invitation to your holiday party. Oh, and be personal. The more your subscribers identify with you, the more likely they’ll be to support you.Use email the right way. As you refine your strategy to suit the economic climate, don’t stray off the path of email marketing’s best practices. It may be tempting to do something brash, like buy or rent a list. (Ick!) Or send every other day. (Ack!) Or even abandon your well-honed segmentation strategy for the ol’ “batch and blast” approach. (Blarg!)Keep your focus on a smart, permission-based strategy, and you’ll continue to see more value for your brand, your sending reputation and your results. Also, we’ve never heard “blarg” used like that.last_img read more

What you should be reading online

first_imgFor this week’s websites/blogs of the weeks, I thought I’d share my go-to resources. It’s taken me forever to figure out the best places for information on nonprofits, nonprofit marketing and fundraising online. Here are some tips:Some places to go for good blog reading:Alltop’s list of sources for nonprofit news.And here is Jeff Brooks’ list of Best Blogs for Fundraising.And Seth Godin.Here’s an interview with Seth from Mashable:Other great resources:Network for Good’s free learning centerKivi’s awesome nonprofitguide.comGreat time wasters:Celebrity gossip – ICYDK, Perez Hilton and TMZHumor – GraphJam and Funny or Die more music chartsFeel free to share your own!last_img

Should We Accept Online Donations?

first_imgNeed help getting started online? Talk to one of our friendly team members who can give you the skinny on Network for Good’s online fundraising solution, DonateNow. Call 888.284.7978 x1 or email us. Question: “Our existing website is not great and we are currently not able to take online donations. Is it worth setting up online donation capabilities now or should we redo our website first?” – ArdenAnswer: Absolutely, completely and totally worth setting up online donations now. Your website may not be beautiful, but it can certainly be functional. Website visitors have come to expect donation capabilities for charities, just as they expect to be able to purchase goods through the Internet. This is an important and inexpensive channel to raise vital funds. It’s a missed opportunity to continue online-donation-less. (Be sure to read this article for more background on why getting started in a big way is important for your organization and your donors.)last_img read more