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As we head into a new—and difficult—year, let’s look back at some of our best articles to help strengthen your fundraising and inspire your work as a fundraiser or a donor.

Dear Reader,

As you are closing the books on 2022, you may want to join me in taking a look back at some of Philanthropy Daily’s best articles.

This was another strange year—from lingering lockdowns to record inflation—and many worry about what’s in store for 2023. You might be wondering how to navigate a rocky economy in the months (or year?) ahead, so we can start there with a nod to our “Fundraising When Times Are Bad” series.

Whatever the economy has in store for the nonprofit sector, you’ll need to keep investing in fundraising. As we said way back in 2020 and reiterated this past year: cutting back on fundraising will not bode well when the going gets tough. If you need some inspiration on that account, check out Benjamin Domingue’s two-part series on investing in fundraising.

And, if you’re still waiting to seize this digital moment, check out Carolyn Novello’s series on how best to leverage Facebook, Instagram, and even YouTube to grow your nonprofit’s audience and revenue. When you’re putting together copy and content for your print and digital fundraising appeals, remember not to tell happy stories and to keep the reader hanging on. (If you need inspiration for something big in 2023, check out Pastor Brooks of Project H.O.O.D.!)

Last point on the economy: if you’re worried about how your donors will fare, remember that giving is good for your donor, too. Your fundraising appeals give them a chance to make a difference—even when times are tough.

Finally, as we continue to emerge from the long dark night of pandemics and lockdowns, we’ll need civil society—now more than ever, to use a well-worn phrase. Bruno Manno reminded us of the importance of third places and the fact that we’ll need to commit to revitalizing these again. For longer and deeper reflections on civil society, 2022 saw another season of our Givers, Doers, & Thinkers podcast, with guests ranging writers and philosophers, educators and investors, journalists and politicians—and more!

I'll throw in an honorable mention from the archives: when Covid struck in 2020, our publisher Jeremy Beer crunched some numbers from the 2008 recession to predict the impact of a recession on the nonprofit sector.

The American charitable sector is an amazing and resilient thing, and whatever this year has in store for us, Americans will remain generous.

Thank you for being a Philanthropy Daily reader—and above all, thank you for all that you do for civil society in America, whether as a donor, a fundraiser, or a jolly participant in civic life in your community.

Cheers to a thriving 2023.

Austin Detwiler
Managing Editor

P.S. Any favorites that I missed? Share them in the comments!


Be not afraid . . . to invest in fundraising, Benjamin Domingue
Nonprofit leaders often worry about keeping their fundraising costs low, but that may be the wrong approach. The first in a two-part series on fundraising expenses.

How to think about your fundraising investment, Benjamin Domingue
Significant fundraising expenses are not only unproblematic—they are responsible if your goals are to grow and to ensure that that growth is sustainable.

6 tips to increase engagement on Facebook, Carolyn Novello
You’re probably working on improving your organization’s presence on social media and better engaging your donors. Here’s the first in a three-part series about how to boost your social media engagement.

10 top tips to boost your presence on Instagram, Carolyn Novello
So you’ve mastered Facebook and now turning to other social media platforms for your nonprofit. Here’s part two about increasing engagement on Instagram.

9 tips to get more views: a nonprofit's guide to YouTube, Carolyn Novello
Facebook and Instagram are thriving for you—time to tackle the next beast. Here’s part three on how to get seen on YouTube.

Stop telling happy stories, Iain Bernhoft
Are your fundraising appeals as strong as they could be? How happy is the story they tell? The first in a two-part series.

The stories you need to tell, Iain Bernhoft
You’re ready to stop telling happy stories in your fundraising appeals, so how should your letters look? The second in a two-part series.

The scoop from the roof, Jack Fowler
This old world may be getting others down, but one inspired Chicago minister has found a calling that is . . . higher.

Giving is good for you, too, Emily Burden Rees
Charitable giving is certainly good for the beneficiary of that charity, but does it benefit the giver, too?

Fundraising as charity, Austin Detwiler
As record inflation makes fundraising more difficult and more important, remember that your work is offering others an opportunity to be charitable.

Revisiting third places in the wake of the pandemic, Bruno Manno
“Third places” suffered greatly during the pandemic, and we suffered for their absence in our daily lives.
third places

How much with charitable giving decline?, Jeremy Beer (2020)
The sudden economic downturn has everyone wondering how the nonprofit sector will be affected. Historical trends can help us predict how your charitable revenue may be affected.
GDP charitable giving

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