Maia Kahlke Lorentzen joins b.bold!

I am so proud and happy to say that our little team now consists of three people! And what an addition the last team member is. I first met Maia Kahlke Lorentzen at the IFC some years back, where we were both speaking. We immediately clicked, and bonded over our passion for social justice causes, feminism, equality and a little good-natured bitchyness. Maia, fighting for justice

For years, we’ve been talking about doing some work together, but it never quite matched up. So you can imagine my over-the-moon joy when I learned that Maia had left her job as an engagement specialist for Greenpeace’s Save The Arctic campaign this fall. And that she wanted her next step to be joining us at b.bold.

I hope you will all join me and Seth in giving her a warm welcome to the family!

Seth and I have already had the good fortune to be working with amazing charities all over the world. With Maia on board now, we’re an even stronger team, delivering campaigns, strategies, counseling, workshops and keynotes. Before working for Greenpeace, Maia worked for Amnesty in Denmark as a digital fundraiser. She is an internationally recognized expert in digital mobilization and fundraising tactics, lead generation and integrated fundraising campaigns. She’s always on the lookout for how new technology can improve our work for a better planet. She’s been a long time fan favorite at conferences all over, and sought-after workshop facilitator known for making you think.

Like Seth and I, Maia has a burning passion for the work that is being done by the NGO-sector. We have all been on the “inside”, and we continue to feel that way – we are one of you, and that is our strongest asset. We continue to do our share for the causes we care about. Maia is a passionate human rights activist and organiser on a multitude of causes.

And, fun fact – she plays the ukulele. We’ve got the entertainment sorted for our next company outing now!

Here’s the happy (and apparently somewhat high-strung) team you call if you want to give your fundraising a boost:

bilde-30-09-2016-16-44-19

Guess what? I’m getting a colleague! :D

Words I never thought I’d be writing after just one year of operations here at b.bold. But there it is, as of Monday February 1st, there are two of us in this company. Ladies and Gentlemen: Meet Seth Piper. He will be strengthening b.bold with his knowledge in fundraising, strategy, leadership and growth.

I’m very excited and proud to have Seth join me as a fundraising consultant. His background is different from mine, and our philosophies and passion for the non profit sector are alike, and as such we make a great team.

From his name, I’m sure you can deduce that he is slightly less Norwegian of origin than I am. Originally an Englishman, he has however made Norway his new homeland, and speaks the language with more eloquence than me. Seth just came from four years as head of fundraising for Greenpeace Norway, where he basically build the organization from the ground up, increasing donations by some ridiculous percentage in the thousands. He is an initiator, who either builds something himself, or – if he takes a project over – reinvents and revitalises it.

In addition to Greenpeace, he’s worked at Médecins Sans Frontières Norway, where he picked up a flailing face-to-face project and gave it a sustained doubling in donors and income. He’s also worked at Amnesty here in Norway, plus set up a fundraising office for Amnesty in Mexico. Oh, and according to his LinkedIn profile, he has at some point met Bill Clinton. Nice!

Needless to say, he’s a great addition to the Team (which was previously just a Tim (just I, geddit 😉 ) ), and I am happy that b.bold will now be able to give a wider range of assistance to the fundraising sector in Norway and internationally. With his expertise, we’ll be able to deliver more strategic help, assistance in scaling and growth, just to mention a few.

So – watch this space, and help me make him feel welcome 🙂

(P.S: he says now that he’s in the business of helping run a business, he has to get a proper haircut. But I believe he’ll still be a radical hippie with a burning passion for especially diversity, inclusion, environmental issues, human rights issues and animal welfare.)

(P.S.2: he’s a very organized fella, so he’ll pester me to get that proper website up soon. And we will!)

Photo of Beate and Seth

Beate and Seth

How much money are you leaving on the table? A lot.

I’m probably not the only one you have ever heard say that you are leaving money on the table by not optimising your websites. But no-one has ever really said how much money. And not knowing turns this money into an abstract that we can’t really relate to, leading us to not act on it. I want to do something about that, starting by sharing some numbers.

As you may know, I started up as a consultant in September of last year. As such, I was lucky to work with a number of different Christmas appeals in 2014, and I can now compare the numbers to tell you exactly how much money you are losing out on.

A small disclaimer before I dive into the numbers; this would of course not hold up as scientific evidence – I don’t have enough data for that. But it is a very compelling example. I have anonymised the charities in mention, as it is unimportant who they are in this regard. They are aware, though. I will not be sharing all numbers to keep confidentiality. But what I do share, should be more than enough to shake you a bit. 

Two of the Christmas appeals were quite comparable, as they both had very direct asks, which led to a landing page where the actual donation would take place. As such, anyone clicking their links were full aware that they were now coming to a donation page, with not much else to do there. Their traffic sources were also very similar. Conversion rates should therefore be comparable.

One of the campaigns, let’s call it Charity A, had a landing page optimised for mobile, and where the donation forms followed best practice. The other, now Charity B, had not yet optimised their page (but were already working on it), and the page and form were not adapted for mobile.

Both campaigns were very successful. But there is a big difference in conversion rates.

Charity A – the optimised one – had a total conversion rate of more than 10% – meaning 10 % of everyone who visited ended up making a donation. And the conversion rate of mobile visitors was more than 8%.

Charity B – the non-optimised one – had a total conversion rate of about 6,5%. But here, mobile conversions were just 2,5%. Essentially, this means that a lot of the mobile visitors gave up on donating.

This is extremely important data, especially if you are using Facebook to draw traffic – a lot of the visits from Facebook are from a mobile.

So what does this mean, money-wise? Well. I compared the two conversion rates, and calculated how much more Charity B would have made with a well optimised page. I did this by taking their average donation and multiplying it with the number of donors they would have had, had they had a better conversion rate. I won’t show you the full calculation, since some of these numbers are confidential, but here are the results:

Moderate estimate (5% mobile conversion)

Charity B would have raised €16.000 / $18.000 / £12.000 more on their Christmas appeal from mobile users.

High (but realistic) estimate (8% mobile conversion)

Charity B would have raised $36.000 / $40.000 / £27.000 more on their Christmas appeal from mobile users.

Now, I would like to remind you that Charity B ran an extremely successful appeal. They raised a lot of money. And still. Look at those numbers!

Even with my own experience of how much the Norwegian Cancer Society improved their digital income after the redesign, it was a bit of a shock to see the numbers spelled out like that.

If you want to check how much you are losing out on, here’s how: 

  • Find your conversion rate from a campaign page or donation page. The number should be as close as possible to the donation moment as possible, to isolate the effect of your form / landing page.
  • Multiply your number of mobile visitors with the conversion rate you want to compare with (5% is a moderate estimate of what conversion should be). You are then left with the number of donations this conversion rate would have given you.
  • Find your average donation amount online.
  • Multiply the number of donations found in the previous step, with the average. You now have the donation amount you would have raised.
  • Subtract your actual donation amount from the number you just found. You now know exactly how much money you left on the table.

P.S.: Need help? I am happy to help you find those numbers, if you would allow me to save them for analysis and sharing (anonymously of course) with my readers later on. 

P.S 2: Done the calculations and decided you are done throwing money out the window and want to fix it? I can help. 

Money on the table

Source: TaxCredits.net

AFP Congress Toronto: Slides and resources

There’s nothing I love more than speaking to a Canadian audience! Thank you for being such a big energy boost for me. I have gathered the slides and some follow-up resources for you here. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me if you have any questions or thoughts – I’d love to hear them!

Do you need someone to help you with this stuff? I can help – get in touch!

Session 1, Tuesday afternoon – “From good intentions to more web donations”.

Slides

The slides have been uploaded to slideshare. Click through them here, or on slideshare.

Web form design

If you’d like to learn more about web form design, Luke Wroblewski’s book Web Form Design (2008) (http://www.lukew.com/resources/web_form_design.asp) is an excellent starting point. He also has several presentations about form design for mobile and touch.

The Cancer Society’s website and process

If you’d like to take a closer look, here’s a Google translated version of The Norwegian Cancer Society’s website or just visit kreftforeningen.no to see it in Norwegian. You can also find a lot of previous entries detailing the redesign and choices made in this blog under the tag “Redesign of the Norwegian Cancer Society web page”. Also, if you’re interested in more details on the content strategy behind the build of the page, awesome interaction designer Ida Aalen recently gave an excellent presentation at Confab Central in Minneapolis. You should absolutely check it out!

The Core Model

This presentation goes more into detail about how to use the core model with your team, which you can also hear a recording of. If you’d like to try out using the core model, you’re welcome to download the core model template forms to use in the workshops.

Even more questions?!

Awesome! I love questions:) Leave a comment below, talk to me on twitter, or ask any of these wonderful people that we’ve been happy to work with in this procject:

  • Ida Aalen, interaction designer at Netlife Research: @Idaaa
  • Marte Gråberg, web editor at the NCS: @MarteGraberg
  • Monica Solheim Slind, web master at the NCS: @SolheimSlind
  • Wilhelm Joys Andersen, front end developer: @WilhelmJA
  • Thord Veseth Foss, graphic designer: @ThordFoss
  • Eirik Hafver Rønjum, content strategist: @EirikHafver.

 

Session 2, Wednesday – Expect the unexpected

Slides

Slides are all uploaded to Slideshare.

Voice and tone

Have a look at voiceandtone.com – Mailchimp’s excellent guide for their writers.

Time for change – I’m setting up shop on my own!

It’s been six awesome years at the Norwegian Cancer Society. This place taught me to be a fundraiser, and it let me explore the digital arena until I became really good at it. I have had the best colleagues possible, and I owe a great deal to my amazing manager, who let me run free as much as I have. She’s an awesome fundraiser, strategist, and people person.  We’ve done some great things together at the cancer society, and I will be truly sad to leave this place. However, the time seemed right to go our semi-separate ways now. I want to have more time to do speaking and teaching, and to consult on exciting projects all over the world. I want to help make the charity sector the best at digital work! And in order to do that, I need to leave my beloved job at the cancer society.

So, starting September 1st, I will be a free agent, available for hire. I’ll work directly with charities, with agencies, with service providers and others to improve our sectors digital presence. I believe I have a skill set that is quite unique in todays market, and I can help you raise more money online, and reach more people – and do more good!

I’ll be using the summer to more clearly define what I will be helping with, and will be back with more information. Generally, it will be speaking, teaching and consulting on anything digital in the charitable sector. This includes such things as

  • Digital strategy
  • Content strategy
  • Social media
  • Donation page and form design
  • Donor experience online
  • Increasing conversions
  • Being the link between charities and providers when doing digital work – I speak both languages!

So if you have a project you’d like some help on – I’m available starting September 1st – get in touch!  

A great big thank you to all the wonderful people I’ve been lucky enough to work with over the years at the Cancer Society. You people truly are the best!

Slides and resources from IoF National Convention: “From good intentions to more web donations”

We had an awesome time speaking at IoF National Convention! Thank you for being a great and kind audience 🙂 Here are the slides and some resources from the presentation – and please, get in touch with either Ida or me if you have any questions or thoughts – we’d love to hear them!

(P.S.: Do you need someone to help you with this stuff? I can help – get in touch)

Slides

Slides can be seen and downloaded on Slideshare, or – for your merry convenience – clicked through right here!

Web form design

If you’d like to learn more about web form design, Luke Wroblewski’s book Web Form Design (2008) (http://www.lukew.com/resources/web_form_design.asp) is an excellent starting point. He also has several presentations about form design for mobile and touch.

The Cancer Society’s website and process

If you’d like to take a closer look, here’s a Google translated version of The Norwegian Cancer Society’s website or just visit kreftforeningen.no to see it in Norwegian. You can also find a lot of previous entries detailing the redesign and choices made in this blog under the tag “Redesign of the Norwegian Cancer Society web page”. Also, if you’re interested in more details on the content strategy behind the build of the page, Ida recently gave an excellent presentation at Confab Central in Minneapolis. You should absolutely check it out!

The Core Model

This presentation goes more into detail about how to use the core model with your team, which you can also hear a recording of. If you’d like to try out using the core model, you’re welcome to download the core model template forms to use in the workshops.

Even more questions?!

Awesome! We love questions:) Leave a comment below, talk to us on twitter, or ask any of these wonderful people that we’ve been happy to work with in this procject:

Tweets from the session

We’ve made a storify of all the tweets from the session – have a look to see what other people said!

Thank ALL the donors! (and volunteers)

If nothing else, social media is a brilliant tool for reaching out and thanking donors and volunteers – delighting them with a little bit of nice, unexpected appreciation and attention.

Every year, the Norwegian Cancer Society has a big fundraiser that lasts for two weeks. It’s a door-knocking campaign, where 25.000 volunteers with donation boxes raise 30 million NOK (around US$5 mill, €3,6 mill or £3 mill) in cash. Most of the volunteers are high school seniors, 17-19 years old. We want to make sure each and every one of them knows just how important they are to us. So for those two weeks, we do this:

"Thanking all your donors" - Post by the talented Fundraisergrrl - go check out her brilliant and hilarious tumblr!

“Thanking all your donors” – Post by the talented Fundraisergrrl – go check out her brilliant and hilarious tumblr

This wouldn’t be possible without social media.

Those two weeks, a few employees and some amazing temporary social media volunteers make up a near 24/7 thanking-patrol. We start at 7 in the morning, and finish at 1 AM, replying to comments on twitter, instagram and facebook. We look at our mentions, and search for relevant keywords on all platforms. This year we answered with a staggering 20.000 comments. And they are not cut and paste-answers, each and every comment is a personalised reply, often including geographical details or a reference to something seen in the photo.

Can you imagine how much more powerful an immediate direct response and personal thank you from the charity is, rather than a diploma sent to the school a week after you’re done? Anecdotal evidence says that this is greatly appreciated by those we thank, who react with pleasant surprise that we notice their actions and bother to reply. About 90% of thankyou-tweets get retweeted by the recipient. Some people screenshot our thankyou-comment on instagram and post it to their feed again. Some people thank us for thanking them. Which we then thank them for. That’s a circle that’s hard to get out of;)

I firmly believe that this leads to more money raised. If you receive a thank you and some attention from the charity as you are walking out the door to start your round – a message that what you are about to do is saving lives – I think that you are more likely to knock on a few extra doors. I definitely think it’s less likely that you’ll cut your round in half! And quite possibly we have made the beginning of a strong bond between the charity and the supporter, leading to them supporting our cause when we cross paths again in the future.

I’m doing the “I love social media”-dance right now.