Thinking about Fundraising

As the executive director of The Byerly Foundation, I do a lot of thinking and some reading about non-profit organizations.  The questions of capacity building, fundraising, governance, etc. are all vital to this thinking.

The non-profit sector of our community and our economy is vital to building strong, solid, forward moving communities.  And, within the past two days I have had conversations about fundraising with two different individuals from totally different non-profits. Fundraising is one of the most common topics in the literature. Fundraising is also one of the most challenging aspects of the non-profit world.

Joan Gary on Fundraising

Today, I ran across a blog post by Joan Gary that discusses the hard subject of fund raising. In this post Ms Gary, a non-profit consultant, posits a case history that may prove of interest for people wanting to THINK more about the ‘how-tos” of fund raising. Some of you may also want to follow Joan Gary on Social Media because her content is rich.

Role of W-I-I-F-M

When I think of fundraising in either profit or non-profit worlds there is one concept that seems basic. If you are needing to sell something or to get something from someone the critical message is What is in it for them. When I taught communication the principle we discussed was W-I-I-F-M.  People who are asked to buy, to give, to invest and often just to help — want to know what is in it for them.  Your case should help them see the benefits from their perspective.

One thing we all need to think about is how to tell our story so we can reflect the stories of the people with whom we are talking. One way to help is using the pronoun “you” a little more than I or we.

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