Engage Now!

It has been some time since I first hinted that another book was coming out. And I am happy, nay ecstatic, to say, it's here. Engage Now! A Guide to Making the Arts Indispensable is now available in paperback. The ebook version will be out very soon. It's wonderful to have this completed. Two years in the making is a pretty long gestation period. Regular readers of Engaging Matters have seen a good deal of it in draft form in this location. I'm … [Read more...]

More? You Want More?!!


There is an iconic scene in the musical Oliver in which the young orphan Oliver Twist approaches Mr. Bumble, the workhouse supervisor, and asks for a second bowl of gruel. Bumble's enraged reaction is "More! You want more?!!" In his mind, the little whippersnapper had unmitigated gall to request seconds. The firsts were more than generous. This, of course, put me in mind of fundraising. (While my mind may not have only one track, the number is … [Read more...]

Not “Or”, “And”, but . . . .


A recent Op-Ed piece by Peter Singer in the New York Times, “Good Charity, Bad Charity”, has been the subject of considerable discussion in the arts world. Singer's premise is that a way to make choices in charitable giving is to evaluate social return on investment. He specifically compares "health and safety" giving to "arts, culture and heritage" contributions and comes to the conclusion that the former yields greater benefits for society. … [Read more...]

Engaged Fundraising: II

When last we met, I talked about community engaged fundraising providing the option of gaining us access to more diverse funding sources. [Engaged Fundraising: I (More Pies)] Here, I am revisiting the "math" of a former post (Arts 2.0: 40k x $25=$1M) in which I waxed rhapsodic about the potential of crowdsourced fundraising. (NB: As yet another reminder, in these mainstreaming engagement posts I am addressing only those individuals or … [Read more...]

Engaged Fundraising: I (More Pies)


There is probably no element of the nonprofit arts management structure that better understands the importance of relationships than the development department. Fundraisers spend their life initiating, fostering, and maintaining relationships with individual donors, corporate sponsors, and foundations. Especially with respect to individual donors, they have great clarity about the fact that effective relationship building takes time, often … [Read more...]