How your fundraising might be saying exactly the wrong thing

Here’s one simple truth that will help you raise a lot more money:

Your donors don’t give to support your organization. They give to make the world a better place — through your organization.

Most fundraisers are not operating under that basic truth. They seem to think fundraising is a matter of showing donors how much the organization deserves their support.

Here’s a better way to think about it from the Better Fundraising blog at Your Donors LOVE Helping Your Beneficiaries:

… the vast majority of your donors care more about your beneficiaries than they care about your organization. And your organization only adds value to your donor by helping them help the beneficiaries or cause that they care about so much!

That means you shouldn’t be approaching donors with calls to action like these:

  • Help us continue this work…
  • Support our mission…
  • Give so we can do this work…

Instead, put the action in the donors’ hands: Give to help the children.

It’s quite easy to switch from Give so we can help the children to Give to help the children.

And when you make that switch, your fundraising will move to a higher level of effectiveness!


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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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