Very few funders will donate to you the first time they hear about you, or even meet you. They want to get to know you. Don’t get me wrong, because one day you just might meet that perfect funder who was born just for you and you will create that match made in heaven because you happen to fulfill that passion that particular donor has to change the world. But alas, most of the time, funding doesn’t come that easy.
The first letter, chance meeting or introduction puts you on the radar screen, especially if you are recommended by one of their trusted friends. If they have an interest in you they will start watching you, so then a line of communication might open up. And then, if after they watch you and they like what they see – you might go up a notch on the priority list. You still might not get funding but at least you are on their radar screen.
The key issues here are to have a clear and compelling mission, a strategic plan on how to achieve that mission, be able to show results, and then be able to communicate those results. Remember to be nice and cordial and understand that today’s donors have far more requests that they can deal with. But, in subtle ways you can be in front of them and present a good face. For example, here at TXNP, we are always looking for reasons to relay stories of successful programs around Texas. Send us you’re your success stories and good news so that we can publish it in our weekly newsletter.
But remember, never give up, because the 6th time you call on your donor, might be the perfect time. And realize that fundraising is a process that should be embraced and appreciated for what it is – a special kind of relationship that could ultimately lead to solutions that can change the world. And these relationships should not be taken lightly.