1.Donors don’t give because your problem is big; they give because your problem is solvable. Spend less time illustrating the scale, complexity, and direness of your cause’s problem and more time on how your organization – and your donor’s support – is part of the solution. Sometimes the need is so great that the donor no longer feels like their support will make a meaningful difference. That feeling doesn’t do much to inspire people to open their wallets. So, the next time you drop a world hunger statistic, pair it with a compelling story of how one family or one person’s life has been transformed with your donor’s support.
2.Dig the well before you need the water. Don’t let the only time you talk to your donors be when you’re asking for money. Invest in your organization’s reputation and build a relationship with donors by communicating updates and impact regularly. This could look like sending newsletters and emails, being active on social media, and meeting with your supporters for coffee.
3.What your audience cares about is king. Effective messaging is 80% what your audience wants to know, and 20% what you want to tell them. Today, people face a never-ending onslaught of bids for their attention. Donors may not read your emails and mailings just because your cause is worthy. If you expect to be the recipient of your audience’s time, your communication efforts must add value for them in return. Try entertaining your audience with a story, making them feel good, or answering a question they have.
4.Ask, then do it again. Speakers and solicitations tell an incredible story. They make a compelling case for support. Then, they stop short of the finish line. This all-too-common mistake is the kiss of death for fundraising solicitations. Don’t rely on your donors to infer what you need them to do. Include an explicit call-to-action. Then do it again. Jeff Weiner, Former CEO of LinkedIn, said, “When you are tired of saying it, people are starting to hear it”.
Wiser Strategies works with clients to craft messaging that works using proven tactics like these. Reach out to learn more.