What fundraising does for donors

Here’s a good way to think about donors and fundraising from Transformational Giving: Where are all the fundraising heroes? Here’s the point:

If your fundraising doesn’t make your donors better, more capable people … then it’s no wonder that you don’t like the job of fundraising, that you see it as a necessary evil — a vile means to a noble end — rather than a mutual adventure of discovery with your weird and very cool donor friends.

I believe that even if the fundraising is completely crappy the donor is still a hero. Our ineptitude and disrespect can’t take that away from them. They’ll experience the transformative effect of charitable giving with or without our cooperation.

But if you get it, if you understand what giving does for givers — if you see it and work with it …

You’ll do much better work. And you’ll have more connected, passionate donors who will return the favor by giving more, staying with you longer, and being on your side in all kinds of ways.

Fundraising is a great source of good in this world. It’s that way even before one penny raised goes to good causes. If you think it’s just an annoyance, you’re in the wrong profession.


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2 responses to “What fundraising does for donors”

  1. Thanks for the link, Jeff–loved your recent post on the curse of unremarkable fundraising. Here’s to remarkable fundraisers enabling donors to do remarkable things–together they can break the curse of unremarkable fundraising!

  2. Thanks for the link, Jeff–loved your recent post on the curse of unremarkable fundraising. Here’s to remarkable fundraisers enabling donors to do remarkable things–together they can break the curse of unremarkable fundraising!

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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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Jeff BrooksJeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 35 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com. More.


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The future of fundraising is not about social media, online video, or SEM. It’s not about any technology, medium, or technique. It’s about donors. If you need to raise funds from donors, you need to study them, respect them, and build everything you do around them. And the future? It’s already here. More.

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About the blogger

Jeff Brooks has been serving the nonprofit community for more than 30 years and blogging about it since 2005. He considers fundraising the most noble of pursuits and hopes you’ll join him in that opinion. You can reach him at jeff [at] jeff-brooks [dot] com.

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