September 2023 (Blog Banner).png

2023 MONTHLY WEBINAR SERIES

Creating a                   
Donor Experience

Magical

Discover how to create a magical donor experience and you'll have thhappiest donors on Earth!

A long time ago, in a land far away, Lynne Wester—principal and founder of the DRG Group—received her Ducktorate from the Disney Institute. If there is one thing she learned from her time at Disney, it's the magic of the experience—and that lesson is woven into everything we do at the DRG Group.

The one thing that sets successful nonprofits apart is their ability to create a magical donor experience that retains donors year after year. For more than a decade, we've taught strategies rooted in the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations—and now the 4 Pillars of the Donor Experience—to help organizations build meaningful relationships with their donors.

This year, we're taking our training up a notch and offering two different monthly seriesDiscovery and Enchantment. (Do you see the theme here?)

 

The Discovery Series will focus on topics related to the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations—acknowledgment, stewardship, recognition, and engagement. This track is best for beginner to intermediate donor relations professionals looking to expand their knowledge and skills in the fundamentals of our work. 

 

The Enchantment Series will explore more advanced topics around the 4 Pillars of the Donor Experience—knowledge, strategy, culture, and emotion—that help deepen donor relationships. This track is best for intermediate or advanced donor relations and fundraising professionals. In other words, bring your friends from other departments because these are strategies everyone in fundraising can use to advance your organization's mission. 

 

Don't worry—one subscription per track provides unlimited seats, so you can bring the whole department without paying extra—whether you are a team of 1 or 1,000. Imagine all the hours of professional development you get for one low price! 

Both tracks run from January through December 2023—with one webinar per track each month. Sessions will be led by our industry-leading team at the DRG Group. 

 

Join us on this incredible journey towards creating magical donor experiences and raising more money for your organization!

HOW DOES IT WORK?

Purchase either the full Discovery or Enchantment Series to save more than $120—or purchase both tracks and save $290!

Here is what you can expect when you purchase a Discovery or Enchantment Webinar Series:
 

  • 12 monthly webinars—January 2023 - December 2023 (24 webinars—2 per month—if you purchase both series)

  • Unlimited seats—One subscription per track covers your entire organization!

  • Learn from our industry-leading experts each month—with exclusive access to ask them your questions during each session

  • Access to live sessions, presentation recordings, slides, and the chat log from each event

  • Timely and relevant topics rooted in the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations & the 4 Pillars of the Donor Experience

  • Fresh content—our monthly webinars are never reused or pre-scripted. We build and adjust our presentations to reflect what you need right now.

  • Samples of the best work we've seen from higher education institutions and nonprofits around the world

  • Practical takeaways and relevant learning outcomes for shops of all sizes and budgets

  • Full participation in the 2023 Webinar Series is applicable for 24 points in Category 1.B – Education of the CFRE International application for initial certification and/or recertification. (1 point per webinar) 

  • VIP access to special discounts on other DRG products and services
     

If you prefer your professional development á la carte, you can also register for any of the individual webinars included in the series for $60 each. 

September 2023 (Blog Banner).png

THE TOPICS

YOUR INVESTMENT

UNLIMITED SEATS FOR THE  

ENTIRE DISCOVERY SERIES:

$600

 



 

UNLIMITED SEATS FOR THE  

ENTIRE ENCHANTMENT SERIES:
 

$600

 

 

 

UNLIMITED SEATS FOR BOTH THE 

DISCOVERY & ENCHANTMENT SERIES:
 

$1,150

Discovery Series

JANUARY
 

Let's Go Up! Exploring Gratitude & the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations

January 10, 2023 at 1 pm ET

It's a new year—let's go Up! We'll kick off 2023 looking at how we can elevate our donors, teams, and organizations through the infusion of gratitude and donor-centric engagement throughout our work. By understanding the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations, how gratitude inspires that framework, and curating an attitude of gratitude within our organizations and teams—we're bound to go up, up, up this year!

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore the 4 Pillars of Donor Relations model and its role in your fundraising shop  

  2. Define attitude of gratitude and how it shapes your work

  3. Identify 2-3 action steps to infuse gratitude into your organizational priorities   

FEBRUARY
 

Don't Get Tangled: Gift Agreement & Acceptance Policies and Procedures

February 14, 2023 at 1 pm ET

We long for donors to come to our organization's rescue, but we have to be wary. We don't want to get tangled up in messy situations. Strong gift agreements—and gift acceptance policies and procedures—can save you from unwanted legal and PR nightmares. Whether you're part of a well-established shop or need to create these baseline programs for the first time—we'll help you on your journey! Join us as we share best practices, sample policies, procedures and documents, and guidance on implementing this critical infrastructure in donor relations. 
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore key components of a solid gift acceptance policy and why it matters to donor relations

  2. Identify critical IRS and federal rules that directly affect our work

  3. Review gift agreement samples and essential elements

MARCH
 

101 Puppies Everywhere: Structuring the Chaos of the Acknowledgment Process

March 14, 2023 at 1 pm ET
 

There are 101 different ways to structure your acknowledgment program! Every organization has a different pattern of thanking, signing, tiering, distribution, and more. Join us for an in-depth look at centralizing your gratitude communications and designing an acknowledgment program for donors—from annual giving to major gifts. We'll explore non-traditional communications and how to bring efficiency and order to the spotted chaos. Plus, we'll share lots of writing tips, samples, and best practices!

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore 2-3 acknowledgment models that address donors at all levels

  2. Learn when to use broad-based vs. personalized acknowledgments

  3. Get to know various acknowledgment types, styles, and delivery platforms

APRIL
 

Finding the Beauty in the Beast: A Stewardship Primer to Help You Tackle Financial Utilization

April 4, 2023 at 1 pm ET
 

Stewardship can often feel like a beast because of its technicality, financial components, complex processes, and growing need for attention in our shops. Our organizations are raising incredible amounts of money and establishing new donor-directed funds each year—but the staff and resources to administer and steward those funds are NOT growing. This month's webinar will focus on the role stewardship plays in our organizations (HINT: it's not the same as donor relations!), how to identify red flags in the stewardship space, and key initiatives you should implement to help you embrace the Beast.

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify the primary components of a solid stewardship program—must-haves vs. bless and release

  2. Develop short- and long-term tactical goals to address priority donor funds

  3. Identify key internal partners and data reports to effectively administer a stewardship program

MAY
 

Going Into Overdrive—The Shift from Print-Based to Digital Reporting

May 9, 2023 at 1 pm ET
 

We're going into overdrive! The world is going a million miles an hour, and if you don't adapt, you'll get passed on the highway of fundraising, communications, and engagement. We must be nimble and quick to gain and keep our donors' attention! Join us as we explore how to move from being the Mater of the print communications world to the Lightning McQueen of digital engagement experts. We'll explore how to become a digital-FIRST shop that sends traditional communications, reports, videos, and other interactive experiences to donors of all levels, types, and giving styles.
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify steps to convert traditional print pieces to digital via real-life case studies

  2. Explore multiple technology platforms and tools to deliver your communications

  3. Learn 10 new digital tips, tricks, and best practices

JUNE
 

Just Keep Swimming: Taking Risks and Navigating Troubled Waters

June 13, 2023 at 1 pm ET

You touched the boat. Someone told you not to, or perhaps you didn’t know the boat was risky. But now you are in a world of trouble—a donor or member of leadership is unhappy and you are in unknown territory. It happens to us all. But how we recover from our mistakes, learn from them, and collaborate with our peers is what will get us home at the end of the day. Taking calculated risks is required of us in this industry. Sometimes, we have to set off into the unknown like Dory and Nemo and take what comes—educating peers, instigating change, 360 management, and a lot of trial and error. Just ask Dory....“When life gets you down, you know what you gotta do? Just keep swimming.”

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify communication and crisis management tips and tricks

  2. Explore how to incorporate calculated risk-taking into our day-to-day work

  3. Identify the biggest areas of mistake and potential DR pitfalls through case studies

JULY
 

A Spoonful of Sugar: A Donor Relations Toolkit to Set You Up for Success

July 11, 2023 at 1 pm ET

If only we all had Mary Poppins' magical bag of endless resources, solutions, ideas, and problem solvers at our fingertips! While there are rarely quick fixes in our profession, there are certain things that every donor relations professional needs in their toolkit. Join us as we discuss the must-haves to navigate your daily work in events, data, reporting, and more. We'll employ a spoonful of sugar to make the medicine go down!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1.  Identify 10 must-have items in your DR toolkit

  2. Explore shortcuts, tips, tricks to save you time, energy, and patience 

AUGUST

The Incredibles: Retaining Your Most Important Donor Population—First-Time Donors

August 8, 2023 at 1 pm ET

They bend, flex, accomplish great things, and are—quite frankly—INCREDIBLE! Who saves the day? First-time donors! One of the most critical donor populations in every shop, first-time donors feed our fundraising pipelines, expand our audiences, and provide critical revenue. But we must convert them from one-time to loyal. Every shop needs to have a dedicated journey for first-time donors. Join us as we share why they are so critical—and the cost-effective, simple programs you can implement to retain, recognize, and convert these donors to reach their maximum superhero potential!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore first time donor journey samples and timelines

  2. Identify key retention and engagement metrics for first-time donors

  3. View samples of first-time donor print and digital communications and touch points

SEPTEMBER

If the Shoe Fits: The Transition to Tailored Event Experiences

September 12, 2023 at 1 pm ET

The tale of Cinderella is about experiencing a unique and one-of-a-kind moment—a dress, an interaction, a shoe tailored just for her. In our industry, donor events are evolving into specially curated moments designed with an individual or small group experience in mind. Instead of large gala events with hundreds of unrelated guests in the room, let's explore implementing smaller, specialty salon-style and cause-based events that bring together donors of similar interests, passions, or giving styles. We'll dive into creating thoughtful and tailored event experiences that are designed to convey impact and build community—and will ensure your guests stay well beyond midnight!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore the key program components of a cause-based event

  2. Identify steps to convert or retire all-call events

  3. Learn how to group donors based on behavior and interests 

OCTOBER

A Whole New World: Best Practices for Donor and Beneficiary Interactions

October 10, 2023 at 1 pm ET

It's a whole new world when it comes to expectations in the philanthropic relationship for the donor, organization, and beneficiary. How do we give our donors what they most want—access and interaction with beneficiaries (seeing their gifts at work!)—while adhering to federal regulation, DEI standards, and setting a sustainable precedence for staff? Let's explore why we CANNOT require thank you notes or luncheon attendance or promise donor involvement in selection processes—and what we CAN do in place of these things! Jump on the magic carpet and let's explore a world beyond what we know (or have always done)!

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify appropriate expectations for donors, organizations, and beneficiaries

  2. Explore solutions to phase out negative practices

  3. Define what regulations govern this activity so you can make the case for change!

NOVEMBER

Through the Looking Glass: Providing Donors with the Engagement They Want
November 14, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Providing donors with information, access, and experiences is the core tenet of successful donor engagement. We must allow our donors to see us through the looking glass—insider communications, specialty access, curated engagement opportunities, and so much more! But we can quickly go down the rabbit hole of: What do we provide? To whom? How do we know what they want to see, hear, and experience? When and how often do we deliver these touches? Don't go Mad Hatter—join us for a deep dive into implementing effective engagement. We'll provide you with all the tips and tricks you need to know to master survival in Wonderland! 


Learning Outcomes:

  1. Define access, information, and experience in our day-to-day work

  2. Learn how to determine what our donors want and need to know

  3. Explore many samples of curated engagement communications and touchpoints 

DECEMBER

Be Brave: Donor Survey Techniques For Success

December 5, 2023 at 1 pm ET
 

Sometimes we have to be Brave and take on the unknown...via donor surveys. We may be afraid to ask or perhaps feel ill-prepared to act on the results, but asking for donor feedback is a critical component of the donor experience and allows us to maximize our resources, time, and budget. Let's end the year with deep dive into formal and informal surveying techniques, frequency, questions to ask (and not ask!), tracking survey results in your database, and follow-up best practices. We'll explore sample report and event surveys, micro-surveys, and delivery mechanisms. It's going to be a powerful end to the year! Just as Merida writes her own fate, we will be steering ours!


Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify 3-5 best opportunities to implement donor surveys

  2. Explore survey technology platforms for efficiency and ease of dissemination

  3. Learn the top 10 donor survey best practices

Enchantment Series

JANUARY
 

Mirror, Mirror: Applying Lessons from the For-Profit World to Create Better Donor Experiences
January 31, 2023 at 1 pm ET


We're kicking off 2023 with an in-depth primer on all things DX—the elevated donor experience! Join us as we show you the fairest of them all and give you a glimpse into the for-profit world where customer intel and preferences drive corporate decisions. We'll explore how to apply these lessons to the nonprofit space to create amazing donor-centric experiences that ultimately impact your fundraising bottom line.
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Learn the basic principles of the DX model

  2. Identify 3-5 for-profit practices to adapt to the nonprofit realm

  3. Explore what constitutes elevated donor communications and engagement

FEBRUARY
 

Directive? Classified: Gathering + Tracking Passive & Active Intelligence on Donors

February 28, 2023 at 1 pm ET

In the futuristic world of Wall-E, all living things depend on technology. While we haven't entered the stage of space living quite yet, we are evolving into a technologically advanced society that relies on information at the touch of our fingers. Join us as we explore the universe of gathering and tracking passive and active intelligence on our donors and constituents. Whether through testing, retargeting, database insights, surveys, or everyday interactions—we can gather the tools we need to create an exceptionally personalized experience for our donors.
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Defining active and passive intelligence

  2. Explore data-gathering tools beyond surveys

  3. Identify the reports every shop needs to develop unique and effective programs

 

MARCH
 

Breaking the Spell: The Role of Strategy Development in the Donor Experience
March 28, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Once we explore passive and active data and understand the power it represents to change our work, we have pricked our fingers and are no longer a sleeping princess—the spell is broken! We are now the architects and guardians of the donor experience, utilizing this data intelligence to craft strategy and infrastructure to meet donor needs. Join us as we discuss the role of strategy development in the donor experience, strategy components, and documentation and tracking essentials for success. 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore a donor experience strategy case study

  2. Determine how to apply data intelligence to strategy development

  3. View sample strategy documentation

APRIL
 

Setting Sail: How to Elevate Your Events for the Ultimate Donor Experience 
April 25, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Just as Moana had a good life on her island but yearned for more beyond the shore, we have the same predicament in our world of special events. Things are good, and they work—though they're perhaps a bit boring—and we know it could be more. We just don't know HOW to elevate good events into extraordinary experiences, retire the ones that need to go, and ultimately reach the point where everyone's needs are met. In this session, we'll explore how to move beyond standard functional events and create powerful donor engagement experiences that move the needle—we are setting sail for new horizons!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Learn how to identify and evaluate events to determine effectiveness and ROI

  2. Explore prioritization, budget, and staffing requirements to create donor experiences

  3. Review case studies of how organizations have elevated events to experiences 

MAY
 

Put it in O for Onward! Creating a Donor Experience Matrix 
May 23, 2023 at 1 pm ET

It's time to move Onward in crafting magical donor experiences! As we begin to map out how we're responding to donors' needs based on how/when/where they give, it's critical that we develop an overarching donor experience matrix. This tool visually lays out all of the touch points and programs you and your team are implementing—and also provides a clear road map for next steps, areas of priority, and ensures your work covers donors at all levels. It's time to take a little road trip and search out the impossible, legendary, sought-after magical tool of the matrix!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Define the purpose and usage of a donor experience matrix

  2. Learn key behaviors and data points to map

  3. View sample matrices from various organizations 

JUNE
 

Being Bold, Not Frozen: Building and Influencing Culture that Breaks Barriers 
June 27, 2023 at 1 pm ET

A culture of gratitude, appreciation, and respect is critical to the success of our organizations and donor relationships. Gratitude affects our physical, psychological, and social health—and the well-being of the constituents we serve. For organizations, infusing gratitude and effective culture into all levels of production and leadership pays dividends in team performance, fundraising success, and levels of external engagement. Let's discuss how this affects DX priorities, including building and influencing a culture of gratitude and forging internal bonds that enhance—not detract—from the donor experience. We'll break through the ice, tear down walls, and infuse warmth and growth into our work.
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Define culture of gratitude and its role in donor relations

  2. Learn day-to-day actions that affect a culture of gratitude both positively and negatively

  3. Explore a case study demonstrating the power this culture shift has on organizational success 

JULY
 

Jiminy Cricket! Fixing the Broken Donor Experience
July 25, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Just like Pinocchio, sometimes we inadvertently get ourselves into trouble. We have all experienced the unhappy donor scenario—there's a slew of circumstances in the donor relationship that can positively or negatively affect their affiliation with our organization. In these moments, we would all like to have a Jiminy Cricket in our lives to act as our guide, conscience, and mentor. Join us for a candid conversation about donor experiences gone awry, our responsibilities to listen and problem solve, and ultimately ensure our donors feel H.E.A.R.D. (hint—it's an acronym full of tips and tricks!). 
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Study 2-3 case studies of negative donor experiences and the resulting outcomes

  2. Explore the H.E.A.R.D. method

  3. How to determine action vs. bless and release

AUGUST
 

To Infinity and Beyond! Identifying Priority Donor Behaviors Beyond First-Time Donors

August 29, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Every toy in the toy box is important! Not all donors are Woody or Buzz Lightyear, but they all serve a purpose and benefit our organizations in unique and positive ways. Beyond first-time donors, there is a slew of critical donor populations that also want and deserve magical experiences! One size does not fit all, and as we look to tailor communications, events, and recognition based on DX best practices, we must prioritize and plan appropriately and efficiently. Loyal, lapsed, trifecta, monthly, renewed, and more—let's explore priority donor behaviors to infinity and beyond!

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify additional priority donor behaviors beyond first-time donors

  2. Explore sample communications that reinforce key behaviors

  3. Discover principles of converting work to behavior-based, not amount based 

SEPTEMBER
 

Hakuna Matata: Creating Empowered Teams & Coping With Instability

September 26, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Like the animal kingdom, our organizations are not always in perfect harmony. We all have had our share of difficult circumstances in the last few years—unclear boundaries, unrealistic expectations, lack of accountability—all paired with reorgs and restructures, down revenues, alternative work environments, and a host of other challenges. But it's in these opportunities that great leaders are born. Join us for an honest conversation about coping with instability, leading through change, and ultimately surviving and thriving in these times. Together, we'll find our Hakuna Matata!  

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Explore the art of saying no and setting necessary boundaries

  2. Identify coping methods for individuals and teams when facing hardship

  3. Learn 10 tips and tricks for navigating through culture challenges 

OCTOBER
 

I've Got Gadgets and Gizmos A-Plenty: The Dos and Don'ts of Gift Giving

October 31, 2023 at 1 pm ET

As much as we hate to admit it, very few of our donors have dedicated shelves and rooms in their homes for all the "things" we love to give them! Unlike Ariel's secret cave of human treasures, our donors don't have the physical space or desire to house our treasure trove of branded items. Gift giving to donors is a tricky conversation steeped in tradition, leadership expectations, personal preferences, and even IRS guidelines that we too often don't adhere to. Join us—just in time for the gift-giving season—to explore when it's appropriate to give gifts to donors, personalized vs. customized options, how to "retire" out-of-date practices, and a slew of creative, unique, and effective samples of donor gifts from across the country!
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify IRS regulations and rules that affect our ability to gift give

  2. Explore personalized and customized gift options for donors at all levels

  3. Tips and tricks for influencing others and gaining buy-in to move away from outdated practices

NOVEMBER
 

Joy. Sadness. Anger. Fear. Disgust: How Emotion Plays a Role in Fundraising and Donor Relations

November 28, 2023 at 1 pm ET

Joy. Sadness. Anger. Fear. Disgust. All of these emotions—and many others—drive our donors' decisions to give philanthropically to our organizations. As effective fundraising and donor engagement professionals, we must be able to identify the core emotions that drive donors, harness them into action, and infuse emotion into every area of our work. Let's turn the conversation Inside Out and discover how the most successful organizations harness emotion to drive the bottom line.
 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Identify the core emotions that drive donors

  2. Learn how to tailor the donor experience based on those emotions

  3. Delve into Tips and tricks for infusing emotion into your writing to maximize results 

DECEMBER
 

Taking Flight: Setting the Stage for Collaboration and Creating Internal Buy-In

December 12, 2023 at 1 pm ET

It's the end of the year and we're ready to take flight with 11 months worth of ideas, data intelligence, strategy development, tools, and matrices! We're prepared for Never Never Land and sweet dreams of success—we just need to bring others along with us on this exciting new journey! Peers, leadership, and team members—it takes a village to implement the DX. Join us as we celebrate the end of 2023 and explore how to set the stage for successful collaboration, create internal buy-in, and take all you have learned to develop impactful and powerful donor experiences. "All the world is made of faith, and trust, and pixie dust." – Peter Pan 

 

Learning Outcomes:

  1. Review of the key DX components and actionable business plans and next steps

  2. Learn tips and tricks for 360 management to gain buy-in and effective partnerships

  3. Dive into a Q&A with industry leaders