There are lots of questions about fundraising strategy we can ask.
And asking these questions will open the door to hugely productive discussions.
Do you want to raise the kind of money that not only funds your work — but also actually transforms your organization’s mission potential and reach?
What would it really take to pull it off?
Why do some organizations tackle huge goals, aspire to incredible heights – and actually reach them?
And others are content with just limping along, aspiring for only small, incremental increases in revenue?
But just remember – transformational results really ARE possible.
You have to make the leap from good to great fundraising.
Your organization’s future depends to a large extent on the decisions you make about fundraising strategy.
Here are 10 questions about fundraising strategy that you and your board need to ask when you are creating your fundraising strategy and plan for the coming year:
1. Can we be honest about what’s working and what’s not working?
Most organizations are pretty set in their ways.
Everybody — staff and board — are in their comfort zone and often don’t want to disturb themselves.
Nobody wants to rattle any cages for sure. Honesty may not be rewarded.
Tough questions about fundraising strategy are not asked. 🙂
Creating an atmosphere of openness and honesty is essential if you want creativity and new ideas – and mega fundraising success.
2. Can we make decisions based on data and not personal opinion?
How are decisions made at your organization? Do you rely on data and facts?
Or do you make decisions based on people’s personal preferences or opinions?
Too often, there’s too much weight given to the opinions of the most powerful person in the room.
Set your strategy based on data and research. This is a MUST if you want to reach mega fundraising goals.
3. Are we willing to ditch unproductive programs?
Often there are special fundraising programs (especially events) that are no longer worth the time and effort to put them on.
But they are protected by a powerful board member or the CEO.
Where are the time-wasting, unproductive fundraising programs in your organization?
Can you speak honestly and ditch them?
Don’t waste your organization’s wildly precious resources of time, energy and money in places where it doesn’t pay off.
4. Are we willing to set $ goals that are backed up with a PLAN?
Sometimes fundraising dollar goals are estimated, guessed at or even pulled out of the air.
An organization wants more out of fundraising but doesn’t want to figure out how to get there – there’s no plan that will set up success.
It’s impossible to achieve great results without a detailed, calendared plan and strategy.
5. What would happen if we invested more in fundraising?
If your organization invested more in fundraising, you would pay back the investment plus realize a significant return.
Fundraising is not a cost center.
It generates revenue.
Invest more in fundraising, and you’ll see an exponential return!
6. Can we encourage risk taking with fundraising venture fund?
Some organizations set aside funding just for new fundraising ventures that offer promise.
Consider that your endowment is earning 4% a year return back to your organization.
If you borrowed from your endowment, invested in expanding fundraising – you’d see a return of 300-400% – plus you’d pay the principal back.
Venture investing in fundraising can be a smart strategy that yields substantial revenue.
7. Can our entire organization embrace fundraising as a mission goal?
The nonprofits that integrate fundraising into their core mission goals, are the ones who achieve maximum fundraising results.
It takes every single person in the organization to be on board — from the folks answering the phones, to the CEO, to the board.
What would it be like if every one of these people all worked together on a plan that they supported? You’d see transformational results!
8. Can our entire organization embrace and honor donors as important to our mission?
Honoring donors is the first step toward an organizational culture of philanthropy.
When an organization does this, then max fundraising is truly possible.
This is what a true culture of philanthropy is — when every single person in the organization embraces their donors as important, valued, and worthy of attention and honor.
Your leaders may be nervous about the idea of fundraising, but they CAN get excited about your donors.
An organization-wide commitment to your donors will lead you to transformational fundraising results.
9. Could we set aggressive, breathtaking goals?
Aggressive goals force everyone to shift and work differently – from the administrative staff to the board members.
Aggressive goals get attention.
What could we accomplish if we marshaled everyone’s energy into a new set of transformational goals?
10. What will this take from everyone to make it happen?
When it comes to fundraising, honoring your donors, building a sustainable base of revenue for your mission – what’s everyone’s responsibility?
What is each person committed to create?
Bottom line: Ask These Questions About Fundraising Strategy
These seem like huge questions to think about. That’s because THEY ARE HUGE.
But if your leaders can tackle all these, you’ll be on your way to amazing results that can TRANSFORM your fundraising.
What do you think? Can you and your team ask the tough questions?
Leave me a comment and let me know!