I talk to a lot of major donors. Somehow, they feel comfortable telling me things they may not tell their ministry representatives. Summarizing their comments, I’ve come to conclude that most major gifts are motivated by 3 important factors.
The story you tell donors explains the grand journey you’re on to solve one or more of humanity’s problems. When you tell your story well, donors are invited to be part of the solution, to partner with you to live beyond themselves and be a change agent for a better world – and a better eternity.
If you fail to tell your STORY well, we reduce our efforts to simply finding the money needed for a project or worse, to help you meet your budget.
Yesterday, in less than 3 minutes, a sharp ministry executive shared with me how in the next 5 years they hope to send 350 more full-time missionaries and 5,000 volunteers in service to reach a continent with the gospel. No ask, not even a budget number. But a story that invited me to be a change agent along with them.
I’ve said many times the work we do as relationship managers go far beyond just being friends. I like to think of it as a partnership. We, the organization, are doing something that donors can’t do on their own. And without the donor’s investment, the organization couldn’t accomplish its God-given work. It truly is a partnership – a trusted partnership.
No more tin-cup fundraising. Let’s lean into the partnership we have with donors.
One 7-figure donor once told me why he gave to our organization. “There’s no other place where I can accomplish so much with my donation! I love working with people that have the same goals as I do – to reach the world for Christ!” Now that’s partnership.
The reason for giving is NOT:
- So, we can hit our budget
- So, our project will be completed
- Or any of the other “we-focused” reasons we offer to donors
The only reason for a donor to give is to save a life or change a life. That’s the reason we are in business to save and change lives.
P.S. Applications for The Million Dollar Caseload will open soon. We’ll be covering how you can build your Story, your Partnership, and Reason to share with donors.
As our gift to you, here’s a free download of 50 Ways to Engage Major Donors. To learn more about The Million Dollar Caseload, click here: www.milliondollarcaseload.com