2 things you might believe that can make you get December all wrong

Fundraising is a mental game. It’s easy to learn the techniques and skills of effective fundraising. What hold most fundraisers back are the attitudes. Attitudes about donors and our relationships with them.

You’ll want to read this post from the Better Fundraising blog: Lessons from 25 Year-End Fundraising Seasons. It tells us about some of those self-destructive attitudes. (It also includes some other lessons well worth your reading.)

Here are those two attitudes that Could be holding you back:

  1. Our fundraising makes people give gifts they don’t really want to give.
  2. Every donor receives every message we send.

Both wildly untrue.

First, people love to give! Especially donors, who are the elite of givers — the people who really get it. It may be hard to believe, but you are doing them a huge favor every time you give them an opportunity to donate. Don’t hold back! That just means they’ll have to give to someone else.

That second truth almost feels counter to the first one. But it’s just as true. It’s much harder to get a donor’s attention than get their donation. Further, they just aren’t paying as much attention to what we say as we do.

This means you can be repetitive in your messaging. In fact, varying your messaging too much is more likely to be confusing then helpful.

So remember:

  • Donors love to give.
  • They aren’t seeing everything we send them, or even remembering what they do see all that much!


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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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