iwave webinar series

Over the past 30 years, iWave has helped nonprofit organizations understand who to ask, how much to ask for, and when to ask when raising major gifts. Our front-row view of the industry’s new trends and ideas has provided a better understanding of how nonprofits operate and the strategies they use to fulfill their missions. With this understanding, we’ve been able to provide new tools and strategies that help nonprofits raise more major gifts. 

During times of crisis, effective tools and strategies are imperative in order to continue experiencing success and growth. To help further this, we assembled a webinar series geared towards nonprofit professionals. The Nonprofit Thought Leadership Series is providing important insight and proven strategies to help move nonprofits forward in this ever-changing fundraising landscape. 

Below you’ll find four things we’ve learned in The Nonprofit Thought Leadership Series (So Far) as well as a link to watch the recorded webinars. 


How to Engage Donors and Raise Emergency Funds During the COVID-19 Crisis 

During times of crisis, nonprofits may hesitate to ask for donations from prospective and current donors. Though this reaction is perfectly normal, nonprofits should continue making outreach to their database. As Amy Eisenstein noted during her webinar, it’s not only appropriate, it’s essential. She felt that it would be negligent for organizations to avoid gift asks during times of crisis. 

Furthermore, this is an opportunity to continue to cultivate and build relationships with your donors. Use this as an opportunity to check-in and build rapport with your most loyal patrons. This is also a time to share how your organization is responding to the pandemic and share what type of help you need. 

Watch The Webinar Recording Here


The Light at the End of the Tunnel is Bright! 

In the second webinar in the series, we heard from Michael J. Baker, founder and partner of m3 Development, a full-service consulting firm for nonprofits and foundations. In this webinar, The Light at the End of the Tunnel is Bright! Michael talked about business continuity, recovery planning, crisis management, and the opportunities that can stem out of these extraordinary times we are in. 

Michael emphasized the importance of continuing communication and engagement both within your organization and with your external network. Stay engaged with your team members by checking in and adjusting expectations as you all adjust to a new work environment. Stay engaged with your constituents by keeping your social media channels updated and sharing stories of what your organization is doing to continue to make an impact. 

Watch The Webinar Recording Here


How to Increase Your Nonprofit Leadership and Effectiveness During the Crisis. Don’t Just Bounce Back, Bounce Forward!

The third webinar in the Series had Kris Putnam-Walkerly sharing thoughts on how nonprofits are able to come back from a crisis. She outlined three key components every nonprofit needs to emerge from a crisis stronger than before.

  • Strategy: This is the time to clarify your strategy. A strategy is a framework within which decisions are made that influence the nature and direction of the organization. Focusing on strategy now will allow you to emerge more agile and reactive and ultimately make the ‘right’ decisions. The world has just changed, which means you need to make the ‘right’ decisions as often as possible.
  • Investment: This is the time to start investing in yourself and your organization. By ensuring all components of your personal life and organizational life are being attended to, you’re able to emerge stronger than before. Some investment examples given in the webinar were talent, technology, fund development, and health.
  • Increase Agility: Increasing agility simply means looking for and capitalizing on new opportunities. Taking this proactive approach means you’re able to recognize opportunities so you can take advantage of them, or navigate away from them. This will also allow you to find innovation in unlikely places. And though strategy and investment are not mutually exclusive, ensuring both are optimized will help you increase your agility even more.

Watch The Webinar Recording Here


How Nonprofits Leverage Digital Practices

The fourth webinar in our Nonprofit Thought Leadership Series was hosted by Lauren Byrnes, VP of Client Services at Stream Companies, a full-service, integrated advertising, and sales acceleration agency. In this session titled “How Nonprofits Leverage Digital Practices, Lauren shared how nonprofits can look beyond traditional fundraising practices and drive more donors by incorporating digital practices like skillful social networking and targeted digital campaigns. One of the main takeaways from the webinar was how we should let data drive decisions in digital marketing. Lauren defined the fundraising key performance indicators to look at to help measure success and give a holistic view of your fundraising performance: 

  • Donors by digital source.
  • Performance by channel and ad objective.
  • Average gift by digital channel.
  • Time to first/second gift.
  • Net new donors.
  • Lifetime value by digital channel.

By tracking all of these metrics, nonprofits can get a good idea of where their audience is online and how to best engage with them. 

Watch The Webinar Recording Here