We are being advised by a consultant to stop trying to build a broad base of donors and instead to focus on high net worth individuals and seek six figure gifts from them. The consultant says it will be faster and more lucrative which makes sense to me. Why do you advise focusing on small gifts?
~Seeking Efficiency and a High ROI
My focus (and the focus of all good fundraisers) is on asking people you know for money, and then asking the people you know who they know who might also help you. If you hang out with high net worth individuals who are also generous donors, then I would agree with your consultant that you should ask them. But why would you only ask them? Why not ask everyone you have access to who cares about your cause? I have the feeling, though, that you don’t know these people which is why you are writing to me. Your consultant will probably advise a number of ways of meeting these people and that will keep you busy. In the meantime, you will not have small or big gifts. Whatever strategy you choose, keep these things in mind:
You want your fundraising to be efficient, and that is not a bad thing. But fundraising is about building relationships, and relationships are based on respect, affection, shared interests, and so on. Relationships are not built on efficiency. Nor do donors love to be thought of as part of your ROI. They want to be part of accomplishing your mission, and you may want to return to that in order to determine what fundraising strategies make the most sense for your organization.
Originally published in the Grassroots FundRaising Journal. FundRaiser users can subscribe at a special rate of $30/year by entering is "$30" in the coupon code field on the second page of the subscription process.
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