Are you a kid in the fundraising candy shop?
We’re spoiled for choice when it comes to fundraising these days.
I don’t know about you, but I feel like there’s a new trend, tool or technique coming at me every time I turn around.
If we’re not careful, we can end up like the proverbial kid in the candy shop.
We flit from treat to treat, gorging on the fundraising equivalent of empty calories, and ending up a bit nauseous, yet still hungry, at the end of the day (and probably getting a couple of cavities in the long run).
Listen, I enjoy a delicious sugar fix too (bring me a couple of Skor bars, and you’ll have a friend for life) – but how do we make sure we have the balanced fundraising diet we need to keep our organizations healthy, happy and growing?
Great strategy is the kale of fundraising
Did you know that the more healthy food you eat, the more your taste buds will adapt to enjoy the taste of healthy food?
If you or your organization are resisting the constraints of developing and implementing a clear fundraising strategy, maybe it’s time to give it a try, and watch as your tastes change.
I think of great strategy as the kale of fundraising – it’s so good for you, but can feel like hard work at first, until you adapt, and start seeing some of the massive benefits of taking a focused, strategic approach, and understanding when to say no.
Sure, it’s always tough to choose eating your leafy greens rather than indulging in a quick sugar rush – but give it a try, and you’ll grow to love it.
Start planning your “meals”
It’s a lot easier to say no to delicious, tempting take out and have a healthy home cooked meal when you plan ahead (once again, I have extensive experience on this one – just call me Emma “Will Work for Pizza” Lewzey).
It’s the same thing with our fundraising – when we’re frazzled, stressed and overextended at year end (or all year round!), it’s so much easier to do the right thing for our donors and our cause when we’ve taken the time to lay out a clear, concrete plan in advance.
Get clear on your fundraising priorities and goals, and map out a plan detailing the steps you need to take to get there – you may need to make occasional adjustments as you go, but planning ahead will help you stay focused no matter what’s coming at you.
Stop throwing spaghetti at the wall
Bear with me as I extend my tortured food analogy just a little further (I know – candy, kale and spaghetti? Yuck – I’ve probably spoiled your lunch!).
I once worked with a non-profit leader who insisted that the best approach to fundraising was to “keep throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks.”
I don’t know about you, but I suspect most organizations have better things to do than pick fundraising pasta off the drywall.
The spaghetti throwing approach can be a useful add on if you are seeking to test and innovate within an already strong and stable fundraising program – but think of it as icing on your fundraising strategy cake (oh no, I did it again!).
Make sure you’ve baked a great cake with all the right ingredients first, before you start thinking about the sprinkles.
I live, breathe and eat (ha!) great fundraising strategy. I can help you and your organization focus your precious resources on what works – fundraising initiatives that have the greatest chance for success, the best alignment with your values, and the highest potential return on your investment.
Get in touch if you’re interested in booking a no obligation phone chat to help you start getting clear on your fundraising priorities – I promise it will be productive and fun (and I’ll bring the pizza!).