When busy fundraisers psyche themselves out

One of the most basic relationship errors we all make is when we believe others’ thoughts are just like our own thoughts.

It gets you into relationship trouble fast.

It also gets you into fundraising trouble. Especially the common decision to “go easy” on donors because you’re pretty sure they’re tired of hearing from you or have nothing left to give.

When you do that, you are assuming that what’s in your head is also in theirs.

Here’s a reality check from the Veritus Group Blog, at My Donor Can’t Give More:

When you say “my donor can’t give more” or “my donor is tired of me asking them for help,” it usually means that these are beliefs of yours. They are not grounded in fact nor in the experience of those of us who know that giving is an act of kindness and sharing that transcends money.

It’s so easy to psyche yourself into not doing your job of connecting with donors. After all, you are paying close attention to every fundraising project you do. It gets repetitious — if it doesn’t, you aren’t doing it right!

Add to that the occasional comment from donors that they hear from you too much or they can’t or don’t want to give, and going silent can seem like a smart move.

All you get from going silent is fewer donations. And falling donor retention.

Remember — it feels good to give.

That’s why they do it.

Your job is to give them good reasons to choose you for this feel-good activity.


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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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