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People You Should Know: Pete Miragliotta of MASST Associates, LLC, Champion of NPO Integrity
Nonprofits are coming under greater scrutiny than ever before. Gone are the days of blind trust by potential donors. In fact, according to a survey by The Able Altruist, 66% of donors reported that the absence of a charity rating seal on a nonprofit’s website would influence them not to donate. And who can blame them, with news of misappropriation of funds by several large nonprofits grabbing recent headlines.
Blatant fraud aside, which is certainly not the norm, there are obvious differences in how charities allocate their funds. This affects their image in the public eye –and means nonprofits need to be vigilant as to how they appear on charity monitoring services such as Charity Navigator, Charity Watch, BBB Wise Giving Alliance, and GreatNonprofits.
Enter Pete Miragliotta of MASST Associates LLC., a consultancy dedicated to helping nonprofit organizations (NPO’s) achieve their strategic and fundraising goals. MASST offers proprietary Charity Watchdog Review services that help NPO’s understand how their financial support may be impacted by the charity rating agencies. “Many NPO leaders are surprised to learn they can actively improve their rating profile, a relatively easy, painless and inexpensive experience which, by extension, improves their fundraising potential,” says Miragliotta.
MASST analyzes the client’s own website for specific elements that savvy donors may be looking for. MASST also reviews the charity’s presence on premier charity rating websites and provides the client with a detailed report highlighting areas for improvement and a road map for successful implementation. THIS is why you need to know Pete Miragliotta.
Jane Jacobs – The Woman Who Saved Greenwich Village
As a certified Woman Business Enterprise (WBE), we enjoy celebrating amazing women. Especially those who share our pioneering spirit. Meet Jane Jacobs, a pioneer in urban planning¬†and an activist who championed new, community-based approaches to planning for over 40 years. She would have turned 100 this month. Her article, Downtown is for People,¬†published by Fortune magazine in 1958,¬†earned her a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation to write her ground breaking book on urban planning in 1961 entitled¬†The Death and Life of Great American Cities. It became one of¬†the most influential writings about the inner workings and failings of cities, inspiring generations of urban planners and activists. ¬†Jacobs is credited with “saving” Greenwich Village because her grass roots activism resulted¬†in the eventual cancellation of the Lower Manhattan Expressway, which would have passed directly through SoHo and Little Italy. Her¬†efforts to stop downtown expressways and protect local neighborhoods helped end then Parks Commissioner Robert Moses’s reign of power in New York City. Like many pioneers, Jacobs was widely criticized since she¬†had no professional training in urban planning. She relied on her observations and common sense to show¬†why certain places work, and what can be done to improve those that do not. The next time you are in Greenwich Village, or any other community based urban area, take a moment to remember Jane Jacobs. To learn more about Jacobs, you can listen to this Bowery Boys podcast, which we found fascinating.
The Golden Age of Philanthropy
Founded by Warren Buffet and Bill and Melinda Gates, the The Giving Pledge is a commitment by the world’s wealthiest individuals and families to dedicate the majority of their wealth to philanthropy. There are only two requirements to join The Giving Pledge, you must agree to give away at least 50% of your wealth in your lifetime or upon death and you must write a letter explaining why you joined the pledge. You can see who the members are and read their letters here. There are now 115 members between the ages of 27 and 98. What is the total amount of charitable contributions for The Giving Pledge to date? Over half a trillion dollars. Most of the members are¬†entrepreneurs, which makes one wonder why they would give away the vast majority of their wealth when they worked so hard to earn it. “Incremental wealth – the process of adding to existing wealth — has no real utility to an individual, but it has incredible utility to others,” said Warren Buffett during the 60 Minutes¬†broadcast on March 27th. (Watch here.) Sara Blakely, the founder of Spanx, is a member of The Giving Pledge. She explained that most members made their money by being bold. Indeed, Sara started Spanx with an initial $5,000 investment. She wants her philanthropic work to be bold as well. These widely successful¬†entrepreneurs have found that giving is not always easy. Bill Gates explained, “It doesn’t matter how effective a vaccine is, if it isn’t packaged and administered effectively.” It was noted in the piece that the Gates Foundation is close to eradicating polio in the world. Let us hope we are indeed living in the “Golden Age of Philanthropy”.
Meet the Event Journal Team: Cathy
The fourth in a continuing series of team member profiles:
NAME: Catherine Kaczmarczyk
TITLE: Creative Director
YEARS AT EVENT JOURNAL: 6 Years, 3 Months
Cathy hails from Krakow, Poland. She is our resident movie buff, neat freak, protector of the environment and advocate for furry friends everywhere. Her beautiful and thoughtful designs never cease to amaze us. She is the woman behind the look and feel of Event Journal.
In her own words:
WHAT INSPIRES YOU? I am inspired by architecture, nature and music. I like my designs to be simple, interesting and clean. Also, I am fascinated by other artists, old (Caravaggio, Picasso, Monet) and new (Banksy, Mueck, Pollock). A few years ago¬†I visited Vienna, Austria and had an opportunity to view Monet‚Äôs exposition that included many pieces from private¬†collections. I¬†also saw¬†Michelangelo‚Äôs David in Florence, which was an incredible experience. I have worked as a¬†designer in a variety of settings: retail, museum, corporate, agency. I also paint and draw.
WHAT DO YOU DO FOR FUN? I Love hiking, biking, being outside, walking my dogs, traveling, reading and watching movies. I also play beach volleyball in the summer and, the rest of the year, participate in indoor leagues. I am quite the cook and love having friends over to enjoy good food and wine.
WHAT IS A CHARITY OR CAUSE YOU PERSONALLY STAND BEHIND AND WHY? I support several local animal rescue organizations, run by the volunteers. Two of these are Guardians of Rescue and the Last Chance Animal Rescue, to which I donate both money and raffle prizes.
TELL US ABOUT YOUR PET(S): Our family includes two rescue dogs named Lucy and Seven. Lucy is a lovable 6 year old pug and had has lived with us for 5 years. She is a frequent and welcome visitor to the Event Journal office. Seven is a 2 year old pit bull and a new addition to our family. Since her arrival two months ago she has made friends with Lucy and settled in nicely. Seven was named after the “Seven of Nine (Tertiary Adjunct of Unimatrix 01)”¬† character on the Star Trek Voyager series. Yes. I am a Trekkie! These girls even have their own Instagram account. Follow Lucy and Seven: @pugandpitt
Event Journal Launches Our Newest Product: the “e-Gallery”
The only constant in our world is change. At Event Journal, we are always happy when we can meet the changing needs of our clients. Case in point.¬†In preparation for its April 16, 2016 Renaissance Ball in Philadelphia, longtime client Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation posed a new challenge for Event Journal.¬†In the time between galas, its national office mandated the use of an event website company whose sites covered some of the functionality previously provided by Event Journal. The new site, however, does not include any of the journal ad capabilities in which we specialize. To continue its use of the e-journal, CCFA asked what we could do.¬†We crafted a solution in which Event Journal provides an online Journal Ad Gallery that links from their new event web page with a prompt to users to “View the e-Journal”. Now, CCFA delivers basic event information and manages registration via the mandated event page and sends Event Journal all the journal ad materials to design and post online. ¬†The digital journal continues to extend to the night of the event, with Event Journal producing the Event Presentation, containing all the ads, title slides, honoree slides and mission information. This solution is a win-win for CCFA! View their e-Gallery here.¬†In fact, this project is so successful, that Event Journal has created this as a new stand-alone product for other clients and prospects to consider when their own resources already include an event website or webpage with shopping cart capabilities. The Anti-Defamation League recently climbed on board with this solution for its large fall event.¬†If you need something other than our current offerings, just ask us. We love a good challenge!
7 Principles of a Winning Check-In Zone
As we all know, first impressions count — from the first digital encounter through the event itself. Event check-in is the first place that face-to-face interaction occurs. So, it is important your event has a user-friendly, easy flow. Event MB offers 7 tips to ensure that your next event check-in runs smoothly.
- Stay Organized
Organization is key to your success. Make sure you have systems in place to avoid chaos and stay organized throughout the event.
- Ensure Proper Flow
A check-in zone that flows well will prevent stress and keep your staff happy … not to mention, provide a quality first impression for your attendees. No one enjoys feeling crowded or waiting in a long line.
- Hire Great Staff or Volunteers
Check-in staff should be friendly, calm, knowledgeable and organized. Assigning the right people to the job is critical to your success.
- Make the Most of Technology
To avoid errors, try to move as many processes as possible to a digital system. You can also use tech to increase interaction at your check-in area. Share your event hashtag and encourage your guests to share their initial impressions on their social channels.
- Plan Ahead for Good Registration
A great check-in process begins long before the first person steps through the door. Make the most of this opportunity to interact with your guests and they will transition into your event excited and prepared for everything the event has to offer!
- Utilize Proper Timing
Make sure your event check-in is properly timed. If running a large conference, your check-in should be open for many hours.
- Get the Party Started
The event check-in should be a fun and exciting area where guests get pumped up to finally get inside the event. If you have a themed event, be sure the festivities extend out into the check-in area.
For more information, check out the article at Event MB.
Cultivate Engagement Before, During and After an Event
Event marketers are no longer content to limit social media posts to the time during the event. Instead, marketers are now engaging donors in long-term relationships, amplifying the reach of events ‚Ä¶ before, during and after. According to a Chief Marketer Special Report by Patricia Odell, it has never been more important to take advantage of the time leading up to an event and then to extend the life of that remarkable experience that was just staged.
The top strategy around engagement is to stimulate and increase event attendance via event sites, email marketing and social media. Another emerging trend is to reach out to important groups of potential donors who may not actually attend the event. This can include donor prospects, industry members and influencers. The fact that these contacts do not attend a fundraising event does not minimize their impact and importance as potential donors.
It is clear that viral communications, connections, shares and impressions can have a huge impact on an event. For event marketers, there is significant awareness about the importance of creating memorable moments and content worth capturing and sharing these across multiple digital channels.
Event Journal, Inc.’s specialty micro-sites help nonprofits communicate with prospective supporters and attendees — to maximize the attendance and fundraising opportunities for their major events. Event Journal provides compelling, value-added opportunities with online sponsor recognition, links to company websites and year-round exposure of online ads and logos. The sites incorporate ‚ÄúSHARE‚ÄĚ buttons and icons to link to the organizations‚Äô social media pages. Event Journal is social media-ready to take your organization‚Äôs message viral, and help spread excitement and engagement.
Read the above outlined report in its entirety at www.chiefmarketer.com.
Successful Viral Fundraising in 5 Steps
Are you a small nonprofit looking to take your message viral and replicate the success of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge? Joe Garecht of The Fundraising Authority assures that any nonprofit, even a small one with limited funding, can achieve viral success. Here are a few tips he shared in a recent article:
- Keep your message simple: make sure that people can easily explain both your campaign and your message. If your message is hard to explain, it will be hard to spread.
- Make sure there is an ‚Äúask‚ÄĚ: Make sure that you are asking for a donation from every single participant. While gaining exposure and spreading your message are important goals, you should also be clearly asking for a donation, as well.
- Keep the ‚Äúask‚ÄĚ small: If you want people to spread your message, they must feel you‚Äôre asking a reasonable amount.¬†If you think $10 sounds like too little, realize that 500 donations new donations would¬†still yield $5,000! Then work on building a relationship, turning them into lifelong donors.
- Campaign must have a ‚Äúhook‚ÄĚ which makes it ‚Äúspreadable‚ÄĚ: In order to get people to talk about and share your message, your campaign needs to include a hook that makes it spreadable ‚Ä¶ something in the campaign itself that makes it fun and makes people want to share it.
- Campaign should have great visuals: Make sure that your campaign can be explained and shared in photos or videos online. People love to share videos and photos and it will make them more interested if they can see their friends and family participating in your campaign online.
For more information on generating a viral campaign, view article in its entirety here.
Celebrating Amazing Female Athletes
Spotlight on St. Joseph Hospital’s Gold Coast Gala
On April 9, 2016, EJ client St. Joseph Hospital will honor three distinguished health care professionals at the Crest Hollow Country Club. We asked them to tell us how Event Journal has helped them “Raise More and Stress Less” and this is what they said: ¬†“Event Journal delivers a high quality on-line platform for our annual Gold Coast Gala”, said Halina Howlett. “Their customer service is outstanding. We receive positive feedback on our event journal from donors and others involved in this event”, she said. And how did St. Joseph Hospital hear about Event Journal? From Mercy Medical Center, another member of the Catholic Health Services of LI system – just one degree of separation away. Thank you St. Joseph Hospital for allowing us to serve you. View their 2016 Event Journal here.