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21. Fundraising - Communicating With Your Donors


Communicating with Your Donors

To fundraise successfully, you need to communicate with people. Your donors need to know why you are fundraising, how your success will help your cause, and how they can help. Are you asking for a cash donation, or are you looking for them to volunteer their time, or their expertise in an area? They need to be informed clearly what you are expecting of them.

You can communicate by the following methods:

Advertising: Through advertising, you will try to catch donor's attention and will try to explain why your non-profit is crucial enough to deserve donor money. In advertising, you will communicate through words and images and sounds (if you are advertising through radio or television). Non-profit groups can advertise their fundraising plans through the radio, television, Internet, posters, newspapers, and magazines.

Letters: Words can be very powerful or totally ineffective, so you need to make sure that all your letters donors, grant providers, and others are well- written and professional. Direct mail letters may require "extras" such as photos or images to really capture everyone's attention.

Email/Internet: Getting information to donors is very easy if you have their email address, provided you do not keep emailing. Address the email directly to the donor or prospective donor, get them involved in your cause just as you would in letters.

Telephone: You will be using the telephone to call donors, follow up with workers, and to finalize details of fundraising efforts. You will need to use pleasant and professional phone manners to use the telephone effectively.

Thank-you notes: These are veryimportant, and should never be overlooked. Every person who helps your non-profit organization should be made to feel appreciated through a thank you of some kind, whether it is by email, word of mouth, or letter.

Person to person: You will need to speak to people in order to convince them of the importance of your non-profit.

Grant proposals: Grant proposals are a very formal and precise way of communicating. Grant providers will tell you in their application exactly what they want to see from you in order for them to to make their funding decision.

Press Releases: Press releases are sent to the newspapers, radio, and other media to inform them of the latest news concerning your non-profit organization and your fundraising efforts. Make sure you do this well in advance of any special events you are organizing, so they have time to deal with it at their end.

Campaigning/Marketing/Public Relations: If you have someone on your team who is good with interviews, or at writing articles for the local newspapers, then use them, and you will find that this kind of subtle advertising is beneficial. Provided it is good publicity, your fundraising is likely to be more successful because more people will have heard about your non-profit group.

You may not use each technique every time you wish to contact people, but you need to master all these forms of communication in order to get a steady source of funds for your group. Luckily, learning to master these areas is not difficult. There are many books about communicating effectively at your library and you may in fact have someone in your group already who is good with words and who can communicate effectively.

Let's consider each area of fundraising communication separately in the next pages.

Next page: 22. Fundraising - Advertising

Practical Fundraising Ebook - Table Of Contents

  1. Fundraising - The Basics  
  2. Fundraising - Terminology 
  3. Fundraising - Money 
  4. Fundraising - Where to Find Donors and How to Reach Them 
  5. Fundraising - Targeting Your Donors 
  6. Fundraising - Research 
  7. Fundraising - Your Donors' Needs 
  8. Fundraising - Ideas 
  9. Fundraising - Donated Products 
  10. Fundraising - Bought Products 
  11. Fundraising - Marathons 
  12. Fundraising - Lotteries, raffles and more 
  13. Fundraising - Fairs, Auctions and Bazaars 
  14. Fundraising - Fun Events 
  15. Fundraising - Drives 
  16. Fundraising - Services 
  17. Fundraising - Tips for Choosing a Fundraising Idea 
  18. Fundraising - Your Plan 
  19. Fundraising - Your Team 
  20. Fundraising - Staying Organized 
  21. Fundraising - Communicating With Your Donors 
  22. Fundraising - Advertising 
  23. Fundraising - Letters 
  24. Fundraising - Emails and more 
  25. Fundraising - Person to Person 
  26. Fundraising - Thank You Notes 
  27. Fundraising - Grant Proposals 
  28. Fundraising - Press Releases 
  29. Fundraising - With Computers 
  30. Fundraising - Secrets to Success 
  31. Fundraising - Problems 
  32. Fundraising - Conclusions 

 

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