The Book On Fundraising Chapter 10 Dialing For Dollars
The Book on Fundraising was created by the team at DonationTo.com. Today we announce The Book on Fundraising available 100% for free, in blog form. As the months progress we will work quickly to make these pages available on our blog - DonationTalk.com. Below is Chapter 10 – Dialing For Dollars – This is a key element to know as you start any type of fundraising!
Dialing For Dollars
Dialing for dollars has always held an important role in the fundraising process, and good old-fashioned phone calls are still an effective contributor to any fundraising campaign.
In this chapter, we’ll introduce some great tips and techniques on how to get the most out of your calls.
First, the most important part of the calling process happens before you pick up the phone: deciding who to call is the first and most important step.
Obviously, friends, family, and other personal connections should all be on your calling list, but who else do you add?
A great place to start is small businesses in your community. Although small businesses tend to make smaller donations than large corporations, they are also much more likely to give.
In general, raising $100 from five local businesses is easier than $500 from one big business. Why? Well, the success of local businesses depends on their reputation in the community. By introducing them to your cause, you’re giving them the opportunity to be active in the community and promote their business’s image. This is extremely valuable to them, since they thrive on a good reputation. So start searching for small businesses in your community, and add them to your list.
Once you have your list of targets, the next task is to write a script for your call. Having a script is important to keep you focused and on track, but you need to make sure it doesn’t come across as overly rehearsed and robotic. Practice reading it aloud until it feels natural.
When writing your script, try to think of what questions your potential donor might ask, and write out your response so that you have it ready. It’s also important to write out what questions you will ask them, and how their answers will affect the direction of the conversation.
Once you have your list completed and your script delivery completed, it’s time to pick up the phone.
When making your calls, it helps to imagine you are speaking to an old friend. This sense of familiarity helps you feel relaxed, friendly, and confident, and this vibe will come across in your speech. Speak clearly, at a moderate pace, and with confidence. Also, don’t forget to smile! You will be surprised at how receptive others are if you sound happy and relaxed.
Once you get their attention and feel like they’re interested in your cause, you should ask for a donation on the spot. Sure, you will likely run into some rejections, but this exercise really is a numbers game, so don’t get discouraged. In general, 9 out of 10 calls will go nowhere, so set your expectations accordingly.
If you ask a person for a donation and they aren’t interested, it can help to let them know who else has donated. If they learn that your project has already been accepted by other supporters in the area, they will not want to be left out! In addition, let them know how else they can contribute. Be ready to run through all the ways they can help, including things as simple as spreading the word or letting you put up a flier in their store.
If they do make a commitment to donate, make it as easy for them as possible. Offer to pick up the check from them tomorrow, or explain how they can donate online.
If you get a lukewarm response, ask for their email address and offer to send over materials. Follow up as soon as possible by emailing them some materials about your cause, a link to your site, and an invitation to connect with your various social networking accounts. Make sure the receiver immediately knows this email is from you by using a subject line such as “Following up on our conversation about My Fundraiser today.” Otherwise it might end up in the spam folder. If you don’t hear back from them, follow up with another call and ask if they had a chance to look at your materials.
Finally, always have a pen and paper or a computer nearby when making your calls. Take notes on your conversations, including who you spoke to, when you spoke, and some good times to follow up.
Looking for additional fundraising tips check out these other links: How to Do Fundraising and Follow Up With Supporters, How to Fundraise Despite Economic Recession, How to Ask for Help in Fundraising, How to Fundraise Successfully with DonationTo, How to Hit Your Goals Faster with Email Tips
Thanks again! From the DonationTo Team!!
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