Streamlining Summer Programs: Ebook & Webinar Video!

Strategies to Simplify Summer Programs

For most nonprofits, summer programs are more than just a reliable revenue source: they’re one of the most effective ways you deliver your organization’s mission. The best camps build happy memories, instill positive values and help grow a new generation of supporters.

At Doubleknot, our goal is to minimize the administrative tasks of program management so you can focus on what really matters: delivering an excellent camp experience. So, we wrote an eBook called Seven Simple Strategies to Streamline Summer Programs, which offers strategies to make every aspect of camp administration—from communications to registration and all the way to check-in, check-out and end-of-season followups—easier for your families and more efficient for your staff.

Response to the eBook was so positive that we used it as the foundation for an educational webinar. We invite you to download the eBook or watch the video (or both!) and contact us at Doubleknot@doubleknot.com if you have any questions or suggestions.

Speed Sales and Checkin with Mobile POS and a Bluetooth Scanner

With a Bluetooth scanner and Doubleknot’s Sales Station app for iOS, there are new ways to quickly check in participants, ticket holders and members; collect outstanding payments; add products to a purchase; and apply member discounts. The following table explains the different ways that you can use a scanner to streamline in-person transactions.

When you scan the code on a:  Sales Station will: 
Receipt of any kind Display the complete order. From there, you can perform any action available for the kinds of items in the order.
Registration or reservation If no money is due, the person is checked in.
If money is due, the order is displayed so you can collect.
Admission ticket If no money is due, the person is checked in.
If money is due, the order is displayed so you can collect.
Membership card Display information about the membership and allow you to check the member(s) in, look up membership details and apply member discounts to other items in the purchase.
Product (UPC code) Add the product to the purchase.

For more information about the Sales Station app for iOS and supported scanners, contact us at doubleknot@doubleknot.com.

Five Easy and Effective Ways to Increase Revenue

We know your nonprofit isn’t about revenue—you’re committed to delivering your mission. But, we also understand that you have to maintain and increase revenues to support and expand your programs. Here are five fast, high-impact ways that Doubleknot can help you raise more money for your organization.

  1. Collect more donations at your site and events. Guests are most receptive to donation requests when they’ve just visited an exhibit, watched a presentation or attended a class that calls their attention to the plight of an animal, an ecosystem or a valuable initiative. Place your staff in strategic locations to ask each visitor for support, and collect donations on a smartphone or tablet so that all the donor has to do is swipe a credit card. One of our clients recently collected more than $6000 in on-site donations at a weekend event using Doubleknot’s Sales Station app and secure card reader on iPads!
  2. “Adoption” campaigns aren’t just for zoos. Zoos around the country rely on animal “adoptions” as an important fundraiser, but adoption can be adopted by almost any other kind of nonprofit. For example, museums could offer the adoption of an exhibit while nature centers can offer adoption of a habitat, a trail or local wildlife. And, the same Doubleknot features that support adoption can also be used for fundraisers like donor plaques, bricks and more.
  3. Make adoptions giftable! Grandparents and other adults appreciate the option to give a charitable gift in a young person’s name that’s meaningful to the child. And, children can appreciate the gift of a donation when it comes with a personalized certificate and a plushy or other small memento. Additional on-site recognition opportunities for adopters, like awarding every young adopter with a ribbon that they can proudly wear on their visits, can help drive attendance and increase positive engagement with your organization.
  4. Integrate a donation request with every purchase. It’s easy for visitors to ignore a Donate Now button, even if it appears on every page of your web site. An integrated checkout donation request places the “ask” exactly where you want it—at the beginning of the checkout process when the visitor has already decided to make a purchase at your site. One of Doubleknot’s clients raised an extra $100,000 in donations just by adding a donation request during every membership signup.
  5. Drive new memberships with meaningful incentives. Standard membership benefits like free admission, gift shop discounts and reduced registration fees may not be enough to convert some of your visitors to members. Consider other kinds of incentives that purchaser’s will value but won’t reduce your revenues, like offering early members-only hours on popular days or priority early member registration for camps and classes: for many parents, locking down summer and holiday plans early is easily worth the membership cost.

If you’d like to learn more about how Doubleknot supports these initiatives, if you have questions about how to get started or if you can suggest an idea that we missed, please let us know at Doubleknot@doubleknot.com.

Great Article about Zoo/Museum Overnights!

Travel and Leisure shared a great article called 12 Museums and Zoos Where You Can Spend the Night, which describes some of the many overnight opportunities available around the country. Examples range from spending the night on board the world’s oldest active sailing ship (the Star of India) at the the Maritime Museum in San Diego to family and adults-only overnights at the Smithsonian’s National Zoo “Snore and Roar” to the Field Museum of Natural History’s “Dozin’ with the Dinos.”

Overnight programs are a great way to engage your constituents in a new way. But like any program, you want the administrative process to be as seamless as possible so you can focus on what really matters: delivering an excellent and unique experience for your visitors. To that end, you should consider using an event registration and management system with the following features:

  • Built-in capacity management and waitlists—procrastinators may be tempted to register when they see that spaces are filling fast!
  • Automatic member benefits like discounts or a buy-one/get-one benefit: besides rewarding your existing members, you can convert registrants to members if the offer is enticing enough! (If you don’t want to offer a monetary discount, you can give members priority registration and/or a special members-only “fast lane” check-in.)
  • Custom forms. Overnights can require more liability, waiver and policy agreement forms than other programs—you’ll need the flexibility to create all the forms you need, and to ensure that mandatory forms must be completed before a registration can be submitted.
  • Quick check-in. Don’t make your guests stand in a long entrance line, holding their sleeping bags and pillows, impatiently waiting to be checked in. Issue one scannable group ticket and move the lines quickly.
  • Mobile donations. One of the best times to ask for a donation is when the donor is deeply engaged in your mission. While you don’t want to make guests feel constantly pressured to donate on what should be a fun overnight, judicious donation requests and the ability to collect donations quickly on a mobile device can be very successful.
  • Mobile merchandise sales. You might not want your gift shop to stay open and staffed all night. But, with a mobile sales solution, you can sell a selection of merchandise (specially curated for the event) with an iPad and a secure credit card reader.

These are just a few of the issues to consider when you’re planning an overnight program. Please let us know what we missed!