Fundraising as if it were courtship

Fundraising is not unlike courtship, or at least dating. Good dating advice is a lot like good fundraising advice, as you can read in this post from Marketing the Arts to Death: Dating Advice for Arts Marketers. It’s aimed at arts marketers, but I think you’ll see how the advice works for fundraisers — in the arts and beyond:


  • Look Nice — But Don’t Overdo It. Keep it simple.
  • Talk Normal. Stay away from your in-house jargon and over-written copy.
  • Don’t Talk About Yourself. Talk about your donor.
  • Don’t Lecture. You don’t to educate everyone. Really, you don’t.
  • Ask.

Donors don’t give to the fundraiser who brags loudest and longest. They give to the fundraiser who offers them the chance to fully be who they want to be — who help them put their values and beliefs to work.


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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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