Drive Commitment and Change With ‘Moments'

Organizations are always on the lookout for strategies that can help them engage supporters or build their movements. When I interact with an organization or cause that is seeking to build a constituency, I like to ask two questions:

  1. What’s the next milestone you are working toward?

  2. What are you doing right now to increase your supporter base in advance of that milestone?

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Derrick Feldmann
Giving Voice to Your Supporters

In their desire to give voice to the vulnerable and underserved in society, most cause-driven organizations fail to include their supporters in the equation. By failing to do so, they are denying others a golden opportunity to see themselves in the same light.

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Derrick Feldmann
6 Ways to Develop an Authentic Voice for Social Change

The good news: Companies focused on social change have a ready, audience eager to engage: young America (18-30). The (potentially) bad news for those that are not intentional? This audience will call you out for your inauthenticity.

Your role in social change should be to develop an authentic voice to stand up for issues without thrusting yourself into the role of omnipotent leader.

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Derrick Feldmann
How We Actually Show Our Support

Recently, after a conference panel discussion, a young woman approached me as I was leaving the stage with a request I hear often from nonprofit professionals:

"Derrick, it would be great if you could show your support by tweeting and liking what we're doing."

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Derrick Feldmann
How to Give Donors Hands-On Experiences That Inspire Loyalty

When wealthy donors tour your facilities, observe your work in action, learn from one of your organization’s subject-matter experts, or hear a story from a beneficiary firsthand, odds are they will feel more connected to your mission.

Creating experiences for major donors to interact with your organization requires thought and planning, but it is something even small charities can do, and it’s worth the effort, say experts.

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Derrick Feldmann
Collaboration on Social Issues Helps Earn Young Americans’ Trust

A number of studies have shown that a company’s efforts to “do good” can influence young adults’ purchase and employment decisions. Now, a new study sheds light on whether those positive influences translate into the kind of trust that can build long-term customer loyalty.

Influencing Young America to Act is the first study by a new initiative, Cause and Social Influence, with support from the Case Foundation. The first of many to come, the report is a significant step toward identifying the influences that prompt behavior change in consumers ages 18-30.

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Derrick Feldmann
Time to Understand Influence

When movements such as March for Our Lives inspire more than a million people across the country to get off their sofas and smartphones and take to the streets, the big question always is, How did they do it? How did organizers get so many people to participate?

The answer: Influence. Someone whose opinion mattered to them said or did something that got them to act.

In this new era of social movements and causes, it’s imperative we understand the remarkable power we all have to influence others.

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Susannah Buehner
How philanthropic is 'prize philanthropy'?

Name brands like Pepsi and American Express put up the money, millions of dollars. Then let the public decide which worthy causes should get it. Backers say it's helping smaller non-profits compete for those funds. But as Joel Rose reports, skeptics think the brands themselves are the real winners.

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Derrick Feldmann
Millennials and a Polarized America

On this episode of Indivisible, MPR News host Kerri Miller looks at our divided nation through the eyes of millennials and asks if this could be the generation to bring about a solution.

Kerri is joined by Kei Kawashima-Ginsberg, director of Tisch College’s Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement at Tuft’s University and Derrick Feldmann.

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Derrick Feldmann
Are we prepared for Millennials?

What are the characteristics of this generation? How do Millennials engage with causes? What are the implications for society and companies? Michael Alberg-Seberich discusses these questions with Derrick Feldmann, the lead researcher of the Millennial Impact Project. The Project is the largest body of data and analysis on how US millennials interact with causes. Since beginning the study in 2009, Achieve has researched the behaviour and preferences of more than 100,000 millennials (born 1980-2000) through surveys, focus groups and one-on-one interviews.

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Derrick Feldmann
Are You Too Predictable?

Earlier this month, I got the kind of call that so many donors get from the organizations they support. 

"Derrick, great to hear your voice. It's been a while. I'd like to sit down and share an update on our work, get your thoughts on our progress, and see if you’d be interested in talking about ongoing support."

This from an organization that calls me once a year. Like clockwork. The first week of May — just in time for the organization's fiscal-year-end close.

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Susannah Buehner
Spoiler Alert: It’s Not All About Fundraising

As a nonprofit leader, you'll be delighted to learn that new research affirms what most of us knew: Americans are generous. In fact, this year’s edition of Giving USA found that charitable giving by individuals in the U.S. was up nearly 4 percent in 2016, hitting an all-time high.

But as The Chronicle of Philanthropy notes in How America Gives, a recently released analysis of American giving patterns, these gifts are coming from fewer people.

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Derrick Feldmann
Labels...Do They Matter?

Philanthropy researchers have spent a considerable amount of time and effort trying to understand the donor's point of view, and they've taken much of what they've learned and condensed it into a sector-specific typology: Donor. Volunteer. Activist. Advocate. Maybe it's time, however, for a more sophisticated approach to how we classify these types of constituent relationships — and how we structure our organizations around them.

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Derrick Feldmann