IT DOESN’T TAKE A LOT OF UNDERSTANDING TO REACH THE CONCLUSION THAT THINGS HAVE CHANGED.
Even a person living under a rock has to accept that life as we knew it may never be that normal again. Now-a-days the services in the non-profit communities are not only necessary but in high demand, and yet in these times where even the most affluent are highly conscientious of where their money goes, non-profits must still fundraise.
This article will focus on some of the main questions to ask and how to deal with difficult donors whom
feel they “can’t” give at this time.
The first thing to asks yourself is what does “can’t give” “at this time” actually mean? After interviewing and speaking with donors in 2020 this journalist has come to understand that what the donor is really saying is the organization has other donors and does not need my money.
If this is the case then how does a fundraiser make a mistake and miss out on that donors contribution?
Here are three common mistakes:
1.) Applying old methods: This is when a seasoned fundraiser upon hearing this will go immediately into what worked say like in 2007 or when they started out or even two years ago. This is a mistake since the mindset of our donor changes with the needs of the community we need to respect their point of view and not treat them as a intangible.
2.) Using guilt: This could be consider and extension of one because it often works but this is a mistake with this type of donor which has become more and more our common donors of 2020.
3.) Failing to get an understanding: The term “I understand” is passé because if you are just showing sympathy it will only encourage the donor to show it back for you in your position but
trust me, they will still say no. You are probably saying well then what do I do in this circumstance or perhaps you are saying well I get lots of donations. Either way you can get more if you eliminate these obsolete tactics. In reality, they simply no longer apply.
If you are still stubborn and set in your ways (or from the south, just kidding) then may I offer to you a challenge-well can I?
Let’s say someone says to you as the fundraiser that they simply do not have the funds to spare and how this Pandemic has given them an uncertain future. What is a good reaction?
I have found that you switch to a resource and offer them help if your organization has something they need or referring them to a program that does. Sounds a bit weird? Are you thinking? And why would I do that again?
Persons with resources very rarely take help in their time of need without offering some form of reciprocity. In short, they often give even if they did not intend because you have solved a problem for them and they in turn want to do the same. In this form of what I call “Pandemic fundraising” , you are acknowledging that we are all in this together, it is thoughtful and selfless. I have found that working with your donors instead of just asking for assistants creates a team effort that will last for years to come. I leave you with this quote:
“You never forget that person who was there for you to give you what you needed, right when you needed it…That is how long lasting friendships are made.”