Fundraising & Development

Fundraising is both extremely important and very challenging for nonprofit organizations. Customizing our approach to each client, GCN’s Nonprofit Consulting Group works with board leaders (or the board’s fundraising committee) to assist in a variety of fund development projects, including:

  • Educating the board on fundraising best practices and the board’s role in fundraising
  • Facilitating the board’s plan for supporting successful fund development
  • Diversifying your funding base
  • Working with board or staff to develop a fundraising plan
  • Providing coaching and implementation support for specific areas of fundraising including individual, major gifts, institutional, special events, and more

Development planning

Development planning involves creating the 12-month development plan, covering your annual campaign and any mini campaigns aimed at individuals, as well as your annual stewardship or retention plan, aimed at staying “top of mind” with your donors so they continue contributing over the long term. 

Our consulting team helps organizations build their annual development plans, sorting through all of their ideas to create a solid blueprint with a clear return on investment. By uncovering the top priorities behind your fundraising vision and reviewing your existing development plan, we make recommendations and plot a course to the diverse and sustainable revenue streams that will help you meet your programmatic and operational needs.

Our work will give you the skills to:

  • Leverage your organization’s unique value proposition
  • Understand what your stakeholders and donors really want
  • Design solid, innovative plans for diversifying your income streams
  • Recover missed opportunities to demonstrate impact and impress donors
  • Zoom in on smart, customizable methods that work for your specific needs and push you toward your goals

Peer-to-peer & affinity fundraising support

Peer-to-peer and affinity fundraising (or “circle giving”) are relatively new trends that have surged ahead under the pandemic and will be the norm going forward when it comes to individual fundraising. 

In peer-to-peer fundraising, individuals ask their friends and contacts – in their phone and social media networks – to contribute to your organization using a crowdfunding type of approach.  There are three major types of peer-to-peer campaigns, and our consultants are experts in all of them.

Affinity fundraising will be the norm two to three years from now. This approach involves small groups of volunteers working together as a team based on a particular shared interest and their willingness to raise funds for an organization. 

Here’s how we partner to help you with these efforts:

  • Training for board and volunteers in peer-to-peer fundraising 
  • Designing peer-to-peer campaigns and activities to raise money from individuals using volunteers and technology
  • Hands-on assistance with the platform as your social media gateway for peer-to-peer fundraising
  • Identifying how to launch or improve your activities to generate a higher rate of giving

Understanding your donors

Fundraising success is all about relationships. To ensure that relationships grow and thrive at your organization, we’ll help you learn to think like your donors – showing you how to identify, understand, and respond to their unique wants and needs. 

For that, we can:

  • Conduct new research and mine your on-hand data for insight
  • Create applicable strategies to find and cultivate new donors
  • Develop practical stewardship plans that turn casual donors into loyal contributors and advocates

Innovating your development efforts

The fundraising landscape is evolving every day. Nonprofit and development leaders need to adapt and respond with new, innovative ways to demonstrate impact and reach donors where they are. To help, we will:

  • Educate your staff in new, donor-centered fundraising trends
  • Create or improve systems that feature reachable goals and usable metrics
  • Help build a culture of philanthropy, deploying additional fundraising training for staff, volunteers, and board members
  • Recommend technologies, including software upgrades and data-driven tools

To learn more about how GCN’s Nonprofit Consulting Group can support your fundraising and development efforts, contact us at or 678-916-3082.

Insights from our team

We learned during the pandemic that staying “top of mind” with donors meant raising more money. This involves using social media often, and with clear objectives and intent.

Successful peer-to-peer fundraising means having a software platform that works with all forms of social media and provides a base for organizing your people, your message, and your ask. (Check out for access to such a platform.)

The Story, Statistic, and Picture (SSP) approach still matters, with visuals an especially important part of your ask

Grant funding isn’t just a matter of strong written proposals, but also thorough research into the funder and building relationships through short introductory meetings and discussions.