Nonprofit Development Consulting

Fundraising Assessment & Planning

Fundraising is always challenging, and it can be even more satisfying. Certainly, development is about raising money, but it’s also about making friends and fans. EMD has helped clients conduct fundraising assessments, feasibility studies, capital campaigns, and membership campaigns; helped them re-tool their marketing materials; and successfully apply for capacity-building grants.

Feasibility Studies

The most immediate outcome of a feasibility study is a recommendation about whether or not to launch a capital campaign and, if so, the amount that the organization could raise. But a good feasibility study does more. It helps the organization identify a prospect list among constituents, gives estimates of key prospects’ potential giving levels, gives recommendations about campaign messages, and recommends candidates for the campaign committee. The study also describes the work and effort that a capital campaign would require from the board and staff, a time line, and other recommendations.

Capital Campaigns

EMD assists clients throughout the entire campaign process to complete successful capital campaigns. We help organizations establish campaign goals (by dollar and by type of donor), identify a list of specific campaign prospects and related requests by analyzing donor data and giving histories, and assist in determining who should help make requests for gifts. EMD helps identify capital campaign committee members, provides committee support throughout the campaign, sets timetables, and writes messages (including the case statement. We also establish naming opportunities, set up campaign reporting formats and schedules, and create campaign communications, including events to motivate staff and board.


Grantwriting can be outsourced if the organization’s staff does not have the time to do this work. We can research prospects, draft proposals, and finalize submissions.

Major Gifts

A major gifts program focuses development work on those donors who can make a significant impact on the organization. Developing the strategy, planning this work, and knowing what it will take to implement it can all be moved forward more quickly with consulting help.

Annual Fund

The “bread and butter” of development work is the annual fund. It is the yearly basic fundraising that often provides important unrestricted operating funds. Having a well thought-out strategy, a plan, and an implementation program are essential. We can add our experience to your organization’s ongoing efforts to generate an increase in this revenue


Membership is one way to structure annual giving. Often used by museums, libraries, and advocacy organizations, this fundraising strategy is an exchange at its basic levels and major donor cultivation at its higher levels. Whether it is free admission or specialized information, membership can be a valuable way to bring people into the organization’s family. Pat Rich, one of EMD’s founding partners, is a co-author of Membership Marketing in the Digital Age, published in 2016.

Financial Strategy

For most nonprofit organizations, financial strategies are paramount in planning their futures. These strategies can be integrated into strategic plans, but can also be far more detailed than is usual in a strategic plan. EMD is experienced in creating detailed financial strategies for organizations of all sizes. These can be overall financial strategies or specific ones focused on fundraising, earned revenues, membership, or on financial impacts of capital projects. We have worked on financial studies for merging organizations and those going through other restructuring such as privatization of local government organizations.

Business Development

Determining new or expanded services to generate additional revenues requires a strategic approach that assures that the values and mission of your organization align with new opportunities. EMD partners know how difficult it is to develop and grow new revenue strategies.  We assist Boards and senior executives in identifying paths for growth in this ever-changing environment.

EMD helps you build that strategy by first helping you assess your existing organizational structure, products and services. New or expanded business also requires financial resources, and we assist you in identifying new sources of funds while assuring alignment with your service goals and mission.