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Welcome to the Dot Org Blog!

A trusted source of information, trends and advice for nonprofit leaders, fundraisers and marketing professionals


We know your time is valuable. We also know that the nonprofit sector changes quickly. That's why we take great care in preparing our weekly blog based upon industry trends, questions we've been getting from clients and colleagues, and our own research about what we hope will be valuable.

8 reasons why strategic planning is important for nonprofits

January 26, 2023
Some nonprofits and their boards may question the need for formal strategic planning every few years. It can be...

The ultimate yearly planning guide for nonprofits and how to stay on track

January 4, 2023
It can be hard as a fundraiser to plan ahead, especially when you are pulled in a thousand different directions, given...

Five tips to keep your team motivated during year-end

September 26, 2022
The year-end appeal season is right around the corner. Hopefully, your fundraising and marketing teams have already...

10 ways to get the most out of a conference

September 15, 2022
People have the best intentions and plan to get the most out of a conference when they go. But the reality is, for many...

Three ways being authentic helps nonprofits establish a connection with their constituents

August 19, 2022
Many nonprofits want to know how they can establish a connection with their constituents. Luckily, the answer is simple...

Five graphic design principles for nonprofit organizations

July 22, 2022
Not every organization has the luxury of an in-house graphic designer, but with these design resources and an...

Five ways to make sure you understand your nonprofit’s audience

June 22, 2022
When it comes to marketing, there’s no shortage of tactics and platforms for spreading the word about your nonprofit to...

Creating healthy coworker relationships (and why it’s important)

May 26, 2022
Coworker relationships can be hard to navigate. Healthy relationships at work can sometimes make or break your career....

Five tips to help you better understand your Gen Z coworkers

April 22, 2022
Offices today include a mixture of coworkers, ranging from Boomer to Gen Z. You’ve likely noticed interoffice dynamics...

2022 Nonprofit Outlook

December 9, 2021
Throughout the year, our team is regularly researching and watching trends in the nonprofit sector to better support...

Knowing why your donors give

September 16, 2021
The general rule of fundraising says that asking the right donor, at the right time, for the right amount will lead to...

How to achieve gold medal fundraising

August 12, 2021
I am, once again, experiencing the sadness of the end of the Olympics. I am always amazed at the talent, grit and...

This summer at Dot Org Solutions - a focus on growth

August 4, 2021
There are many favorite things I think about when someone mentions summer – grilling out, farmers markets, Ohio sweet...

Summer recommendations from the Dot Org team

July 14, 2021
After a rough year in 2020 and a busy beginning to 2021, I think all of us are ready for a (mostly) normal, low-key...

Six digital marketing investments nonprofits can make to improve reach

June 24, 2021
For many nonprofits, digital marketing consists of occasional mass emails, an infrequently updated website and posts on...

Basic digital metrics nonprofits should know and understand

June 10, 2021
Understanding and using basic digital metrics can help your nonprofit better understand your audience and get more...

Choosing the best social media platform for your nonprofit

May 20, 2021
With all the options available, choosing the best social media platform for your nonprofit may be difficult.

Forming good working relationships and why they're important

February 25, 2021
It's important to make sure your work relationships are healthy — after all, we spend a considerable amount of time at...

The best time to create a plan is now

February 4, 2021
It’s never too late to plan. Even if know you can’t implement anything until later this year or you aren’t sure where...

Four marketing trends for nonprofits to consider this year

January 21, 2021
Earlier this month, HubSpot released an article about marketing trends to watch in 2021. These kinds of articles are...

The importance of nonprofit strategic planning in uncertain times

January 7, 2021
Strategic planning during uncertain times may seem like the last thing your nonprofit wants to do or should do. But it...

10 ways to take care of yourself, team and donors in December

December 10, 2020
While this year has been challenging, there are still some things you can do to take care of you, your team and your...

Eight attributes of strong leaders and teams

November 19, 2020
Throughout my career, I have spent a great deal of time studying leadership. Some of that study was from working and...

'Tis the season for giving

November 11, 2020
When we get close to the end of the year, there are three different things I think about personally: Thanksgiving (my...

The Dot Org Solutions team describes their versatile career paths

October 22, 2020
The staff at Dot Org Solutions was asked to reminisce on their versatile career paths and describe them in one word.

Picking the best vendor partner or contractor for your company

October 8, 2020
This blog was originally published on September 20, 2019. Like most small agencies and consulting firms, we outsource...

Dot Org Solutions webinar series to focus on nonprofit resilience

October 1, 2020
Our communities rely on nonprofits to thrive. So, we must provide as many opportunities as possible during this...

At-home distractions and how to combat them

September 24, 2020
When we decided to temporarily close our office in March and our team started working from home, we had a lot to figure...

How to find value in webinars and virtual professional development

August 20, 2020
Even before the pandemic, webinars were an easy way for all of us to do a little professional development, hear some...

Reasons nonprofits can (and should) use LinkedIn

July 22, 2020
LinkedIn is a great tool, but many employees of nonprofit organizations and small businesses do not fully understand...

Dot Org launches “Café” to focus on nonprofit professional development

June 18, 2020
Normally when I write a blog for Dot Org, I focus on a topic related to leadership and/or the nonprofit sector. But...

Managing social media in a crisis

June 4, 2020
There is no question that 2020 has been a year we won’t soon forget. And if you are tasked with managing social media...

Avoiding the trap of being too productive

April 16, 2020
When life, schedules and unplanned things (COVID-19) happen, it's easy to forge ahead to get things done but sometimes...

Staying connected while staying apart

March 26, 2020
As many people transition from working in the office to working from home, effective communication becomes increasingly...

Leading and planning during a crisis

March 11, 2020
I’m not an expert in infectious diseases. But I do have more than 25 years of experience in public relations, nonprofit...

How shaping our workplace culture has transformed our business

March 5, 2020
There is so much discussion in business circles about building a strong workplace culture. There are hashtags devoted...

Lessons learned from my time as a student-athlete

January 30, 2020
I’ve been a jock my whole life.  Some of my earliest memories are playing basketball in my driveway and running...

Applying improv to life and work

October 31, 2019
Several months ago, I was having lunch with one of my peers in the fundraising consulting field. And I told him I...

Writing for audiences in sensitive situations

October 17, 2019
As you write your appeal letters, grant narrative or marketing copy, you might be wondering how to properly tell your...

Four tips for effectively communicating with diverse audiences

October 10, 2019
Knowing and understanding your audience is extremely important. In a past blog post, I talked about best practices for...

Recognizing partners and sponsors on social media

October 2, 2019
You have probably heard the saying “it takes a village” in reference to reaching a goal or accomplishing a big task....

Outsourcing work to the best people

September 20, 2019
Like most small agencies and consulting firms, we outsource certain types of work to outside vendors or contractors and...

A year-end appeal checklist

September 11, 2019
No, it is not too early to think about your year-end appeal. As a matter of fact, it might be a little late. But, if...

Four tips for ensuring your messaging communicates impact

September 5, 2019
A common problem for nonprofits is finding meaningful ways to communicate impact to donors. They might find themselves...

Four things to remember about social media donors for year-end giving

August 29, 2019
This year is more than halfway over – and, as the weather starts to cool down, we are all marking our calendars for...

Four things to remember about social media donors for year-end giving

August 29, 2019
The year is more than halfway over and as the weather starts to cool down, we are all marking our calendars for...

Three operational changes leaders must make to propel their business

August 23, 2019
I believe the best way to propel your nonprofit or small business is to look for methods to improve your operations....

Celebrate National Nonprofit Day your way

August 14, 2019
Every day, we are all impacted by a nonprofit in our community, whether we know it or not. I pass through Zoar, which...

Three reasons your nonprofit needs to establish marketing personas

August 8, 2019
If you have worked in the for-profit marketing world, there is a good chance you have heard of the benefits of building...

Exploring LinkedIn: A professional's guide to using the social network

August 1, 2019
LinkedIn is a great tool, but many employees of nonprofit organizations and small businesses do not fully understand...

Five things nonprofits should consider when planning for 2020

July 26, 2019
Note from Amy: There is an endless amount of information available to nonprofits and we know how hard it is to get...

Four reasons a Fundraising Readiness Assessment™ may be right for you

July 18, 2019
Dot Org Solutions has two areas of focus – fundraising consulting and marketing. Last week, Kayleigh Fladung, our...

Four reasons your nonprofit should conduct a marketing assessment

July 11, 2019
Marketing is an importance piece of any organization’s strategic plan. You need to make sure your target markets are...

Five tips on using images to make your social posts more compelling

July 9, 2019
Every day, we are bombarded with content. We pass billboards, flip through TV ads and scan social media for interesting...

A picture is worth 1,000 words: Best practices for social media photos

July 2, 2019
Choosing an appropriate an engaging social media photo is important. Every day, we are bombarded with content. We pass...

Planned giving marketing

June 28, 2019
This week’s blog is based on a presentation Amy Wong, president of Dot Org Solutions, gave to a group of fundraising...

So, what does a fundraising consultant do?

June 13, 2019
Last week, our marketing and PR services manager, Kayleigh Fladung, wrote her blog post on a few problems a marketing...

Three problems a marketing consultant can help you solve

June 7, 2019
Making the decision to hire a marketing consultant can be a daunting task, especially for small businesses and...

Five tips for using social media marketing during an event

May 30, 2019
If you have ever attended an industry conference, networking event or even an extravagant party, you may have been able...

Step 3: How to market grant awards and steward funders

May 16, 2019
This is the final post in a series of three blogs the Dot Org team is writing on grants.

Step 2: How to write a compelling grant

May 9, 2019
This is the second post in a series of three blogs the Dot Org team will be writing on grants.

Step 1: How to start a grant program

May 2, 2019
This is the first post in a series of three blogs the Dot Org team will be writing on something all nonprofits should...

Tips for effectively telling your nonprofit’s story

April 25, 2019
When discussing a client’s marketing needs, one of the most common requests I receive is for help “telling their...

Prioritizing when it doesn't seem possible

April 18, 2019
We’ve all had “that kind of week" (or month, year, etc.). I’m sure you know what I am talking about. It’s the kind of...

Preparing your social media for days of celebration

April 9, 2019
You may occasionally scroll through social media, and think “Wow, there is a day for everything.”

Seven mistakes fundraisers are making

April 1, 2019
Fundraisers pay attention to a lot of things but often forget to make note of the mistakes they might be making. They...

Four fundraising metrics nonprofit leaders should know and track

March 21, 2019
Nonprofit leaders must pay attention to many details – numbers served, outcomes, staffing percentages, budgets and...

Monthly giving and how it can boost annual giving

February 26, 2019
Fundraisers and nonprofits are always searching for a way to raise more annual donations, and the secret might be...

Six ways to become a transparent nonprofit leader

February 21, 2019
I've frequently come across the topic of transparent leadership and how it relates to building and maintaining a strong...

Using rented lists to acquire donors

February 4, 2019
It’s a new year for your fundraising efforts. One of your goals might be to recruit some new donors to your...

Four tips I learned from attending a conference from another industry

January 30, 2019
It's important to always be learning, but we often forget we can learn from another industry. As business owners and...

A year-end pep talk for fundraisers

December 17, 2018
As the holiday season begins, many of us will spend more time with family, participate in holiday activities and...

Five things every nonprofit board should review regularly

November 5, 2018
Being asked to be a member of a nonprofit board is an honor. It means that the nonprofit has faith that you will help...

Year-end giving - where is my money going?

October 22, 2018
It’s that time of year when we start getting bombarded with requests for donations. Whether it’s through the mail,...

Four ways to make your organization’s newsletters stand out

October 15, 2018
It's important for your organization's newsletters to stand out. Take a minute to look in your email inbox. There are...

Nine tips on how to write and prepare an engaging speech

October 8, 2018
Writing and preparing an engaging speech can be daunting. Sure, you could hire someone to help you develop and...

Seven things leaders can do to run their nonprofit like a business

September 24, 2018
If you’re an executive director at a nonprofit, I wouldn’t be surprised if you have heard the following declaration...

Five ways to make your nonprofit’s social media engaging and effective

September 17, 2018
Social media is not only an important part of any nonprofit’s marketing plan, but it's also important for it to be...

Five ways to make your nonprofit's social media engaging and effective

September 17, 2018
Social media is an important part of any organization’s marketing plan and implementation so it's vital to make sure it...

Eight inbound marketing tips for nonprofits

September 11, 2018
I had the opportunity to spend the week in Boston at the HubSpot INBOUND 2018 conference. I had never heard of this...

Let's plan some sort of fundraiser...

September 4, 2018
If you are a professional who works for a nonprofit, you have probably attended or worked at an event for your...

Four reasons why learning is important for young professionals

August 27, 2018
While it’s important for everyone to continue learning throughout their career, it is especially crucial for young...

You know you have a good vendor when...

August 13, 2018
It’s mid-afternoon at work and we are only four days away from launching a major project for a client. All is going...

Pitching the media without a PR background

July 16, 2018
At Dot Org, we spend a fair amount of time talking with the media, pitching story ideas for clients and responding to...

Now is the time to start your individual giving program

July 9, 2018
  There are nearly 87,000 grant-making foundations in the U.S. and they give more than $60 billion every year. While...

The importance of taking a break

June 19, 2018
It’s summertime here in Ohio. And after a very long winter, I am happily enjoying the warm weather and longer days....

Millennials: The next generation of donors

June 11, 2018
There are approximately 73 million millennials in the United States who just might be the next generation of donors....

Let’s talk about brands

May 29, 2018
We all know and are familiar with lots of brands, but what exactly does that word mean? How does an organization...

Learning is a life-long process

May 22, 2018
My daughter, the oldest of my three kids, recently moved back home after her freshman year of college and I quickly...

Grants 101: Best practices from a director of fundraising consultant

May 14, 2018
 If you write a few grants or many grants in a year there are some constants to keep in mind: 1. There are no...

Why nonprofits should consider creativity when hiring employees

May 7, 2018
When a company is hiring new employees, there are some key qualities that typically come to mind to describe an ideal...

Why do we need to work our network?

April 16, 2018
There are some people that love a good networking event. They work the room, passing out business cards from one person...

Nonprofit board members' responsibilities aren't what they used to be

March 19, 2018
In the past, nonprofit board members showed up for three or four meetings a year, attended the annual gala, added the...

How to achieve gold medal fundraising - Winter Olympics

February 19, 2018
 I am a self-identified Olympics fanatic. I spend hours watching sports I don’t completely understand, but that doesn’t...

Data and you: Why organized information is essential to your nonprofit

February 12, 2018
I recently participated as a panelist for a professional development program for our local Association of Fundraising...

Annual fund planning in January - WHAT?!

January 29, 2018
You rushed around in November to get an annual fund appeal out the door. I’m guessing that the last thing you want to...

Finish strong! Six tips for successful year-end fundraising

December 20, 2017
The end of the year is approaching and we all know what that means! Nervous fundraisers are doing everything they can...

Big plans, small budget  

June 25, 2015
Small businesses, start-ups and nonprofit leaders are always balancing big ideas with small budgets. But they must...

Ten tips for networking - in the US

May 18, 2015
I recently had a chance to speak to a group of high school students at the National Inventors Hall of Fame Stem School...

Nine ways to improve the board-staff relationship in a small nonprofit

January 28, 2013
It's important to nurture the relationship between your board and staff. I hear countless stories from small nonprofits...

Planning in the midst of a chaotic world

January 14, 2013
I am a planner. I don’t do well operating in chaos or uncertainty. But in my line of work, my days are never the same...

Making smart charitable decisions

September 5, 2012
I presented the topic of making smart charitable decisions to a group of smart, savvy businesswomen who wanted to know...

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