Tips for Fundraising with Volunteers

Posted by on April 30, 2007

Tips for Fundraising with Volunteers

The 14 Most Common Errors Made in Soliciting a Major Gift

1. Forgetting to ask for the gift
2. Not requesting a large enough gift
3. Talking too much and not listening
4. Neglecting to engage the prospect ? i.e. ?Am I being clear? Do you have any questions?? etc.
5. Staying too organization-focused rather than discussing client benefit, community and prospect impact.
6. Not being flexible, devoid of alternative support ideas
7. Failing to do enough research and not knowing about the prospect before the solicitation
8. Allowing the conversation to conclude without summarizing any actions needed
9. Not having prearranged solicitation team signals
10. Asking for the gift too soon
11. Speaking rather than staying silent after the Ask
12. Settling on the first offer
13. Ignoring relationship building prior to solicitation
14. Sending untrained solicitors out on the call without adequate practice and preparation.

Adapted from The Public Management Institute (Conrad, 1978)

You can avoid the most common errors and prepare yourself for success in getting the gift you want by planning and practicing what you and others on your solicitation team will say and do before the visit. Logistics planning covers everything from scripting the visit to giving hidden cues to others on your team.

(Click here to download a logistics planning worksheet you can use with your fundraising volunteers before you make a solicitation call.)

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