Text version of ‘Top 10 fundraising tips’ infographic:
- Take a snapshot – How much funding is needed and what are the timelines? Where is the organisation in its fundraising cycle? Where has it received funding from? What proposals have been submitted? What is the likelihood of success?
- Make a plan – decide what it will take to meet your funding targets and map out the road to success. Consider various streams of funding and donor types in your plan.
- Ensure your collateral is up to date and compelling – do you have a suite of generic funding proposals, one for each project, ready to be sent to a prospective donor at a moment’s notice? Do you have an up-to-date, compelling website and a social media presence?
- Explore the low-hanging fruit – if a donor stopped supporting the organisation, find out why. Did we blot our copybook? Or was it simply that nobody asked again?
- Make use of donor databases – but be sure to do your homework and confirm that: a. The person is still in that role in the organisation, b. The organisation is accepting proposals at that time, c. The collateral is in the correct format d. Your ask is aligned to the donor’s strategy and requirements And remember … Google is your friend, along with LinkedIn. There’s a lot to be learned about donors, especially on LinkedIn!
- Always thank your donors – as quickly as possible. If you can, pick up the phone and thank them telephonically. Make sure that they have what they need – BEE documentation or Section 18A certificate.
- Keep good records – a CRM system, or even an Excel spreadsheet, will help you keep track of donor communications and follow-ups.
- Make a note of reporting dates and ensure that these deadlines are met.
- Stay in touch – even when reports aren’t due, an email update or newsletter is always appreciated.
- Find a tribe. Find a group of fundraisers and non-profit people who can share your challenges and triumphs … and be a shoulder to cry on when needed!
Author: Melanie Jackson, Words that Count