ICYMI: Last Week’s Nonprofit News, Today | Feb. 4

With Atlanta now through the deep thaw after last week's snowstorm, learn how local nonprofits helped the city's most vulnerable residents. Also, Forbes tackles the NFL's tax-exempt status; are IPOs a working model for nonprofits; and many more stories!

HEADLINES

Obama’s Voluntary Action 2014 State of the Union Address
(Nonprofit Quarterly)
Rick Cohen breaks down the president’s official American status update, looking for signs of executive life in policy areas close to nonprofit’s hearts, and finds it generally lacking—calling for for more “voluntary action” than official policy to handle issues like income inequality, a national jobs intiative, and anti-poverty efforts (“at least he didn’t sideswipe community action agencies...as he did in 2011”). For more pointed Cohen commentary, check out his take on a list of statistics from Rolling Stone that ran ahead of the address, also at NPQ.

The Real Super Bowl Question: Should the NFL Be a Nonprofit?
(Forbes)
With the multimillion-dollar spectacle of Sunday’s big game once again upon us, author Tom Watson says it’s long past time to consider the financial costs and moral ramifications of a $9.5 billion entertainment industry that’s exempt from paying taxes.    

GEORGIA

Snowstorm is just part of cold crisis for Atlanta’s Homeless
(Creative Loafing)
The city’s most vulnerable residents—its homeless—made it through the severe weather that paralyzed Atlanta last week with the help of GCN member United Way of Metro Atlanta (who provide commentary) and other area nonprofits.

EVENTS

How to Get More Sponsors for Your Events
(Event Manager Blog)
A few tips for getting more corporate sponsors to help underwrite your next fundraiser, from one UK marketing conference organizer. Job one: think about sponsors like customers, and your audience as the product. In other words: figure out the businesses interested in speaking to your supporters, and woo them accordingly.

FUNDRAISING

Your Secret to Mindblowing Fundraising: Improve Donor Retention Just 10%
(Clairification)
Retention seems to be the hot topic of the new year, but fundraising coach Claire Axelrad isn’t afraid to get practical when considering the dire implications of not having a donor retention program (or budget!). Find out a simple way to calculate your donor retention rate and the “lifetime value” of any given donor, as well as what you need in your suite of retention strategies.

6 Mistakes Nonprofits Make in Online Fundraising
(Joanne Spitz / About.com)
In a new national study of online fundraising practices, nonprofits were found to be skipping some simple but vital tactics for getting attention, money, and long-term commitments from online donors. Here are the six most serious, along with some takeaways from the Dunhan+Company/Next After report, the Online Fundraising Scorecard.  

Which Is Your Next Priority: Younger Donors or Boomers?
(Bloomerang)
Every nonprofit fundraiser’s favorite generation-gap question, answered with bracing honesty by Bloomerang communications coach Tom Ahern: “As vast numbers of boomers approach their sell-by dates… let’s replay the staggering math and lick our bequest marketing chops.”

INNOVATION

The New Nonprofit IPO
(Stanford Social Innovation Review)
Funding a business through an IPO—selling shares in the company, and with them a voice in the decision-making process of that company—has been working in the for-profit world for centuries. So why not us? The folks behind the latest nonprofit IPO explain why it’s time for a “fundraising paradigm shift.” Nonprofit Quarterly, meanwhile, reports on the latest major “social impact bond” initiative to get the greenlight, a Massachusetts plan using private money to fund nonprofit-led recidivism-reduction efforts.  

MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS

10 Insanely Useful Free Twitter Tools for Nonprofits
(Kivi’s Nonprofit Communications Blog / Nonprofit Marketing Guide)
If you want to step up your Twitter game--schedule tweets in a snap, find the most popular hashtag for your appeal, give your newsletter readers a one-click method for tweeting your message--check out Kivi Leroux Miller’s roundup of great, no-cost tools.

7 Facebook Hacks to Make Your Website More Sharable
(John Haydon)
Making sure your audience has a quick-and-easy way to share all of your content on Facebook, and that it shines once it’s there, from the one-and-only Nonprofit Facebook Guy.

Marc Schultz is managing editor of Georgia Nonprofit NOW. 

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