In this blog we try to debunk some of the most popular myths about trust fundraising – whether it is about raising money for a community interest company, proving your track record to a grant-makers satisfaction or applying for unrestricted money and covering your overheads through grants.
When we hire a fundraiser we are responsible for choosing the person who will succeed for us. We can’t afford to benchmark against the candidates who turn up for interview, we must know the benchmarks already so that we know what success looks like before it walks through the door and introduces itself.
Big Gift, Major Gift, Major Donor – call it what you will – Fundraising isn’t defined by a set gift amount. It is defined by its approach – taking the time to develop a relationship with a person over time in order to ask for a commitment.
It used to be the natural thing for us to question everything – we asked why? all the time. Over time we’ve stopped doing that so much – we know more, we don’t ask as much. Asking “yeah, but why?” about your fundraising proposition is a good test of whether you’ve arrived at the nub of the issue yet… and if you can’t answer the whys that you come up with you won’t be answering the whys of your audience
Even a tiny charity can build a major donor programme. Because a major donor programme can start with a single donor, it doesn’t have to start with a big database, a big spreadsheet and an investment in staff and resources that won’t pay off for two years or more.
The secret is knowing your capacity to delight and then delighting that donor or those few donors you can manage well.