That Gift: Is it to your organization or to the board member?

02/26/2014 · Terri

NP Board segmentedPick any nonprofit. Pick any Board of Directors. Pick any Board training and you will find your typical ‘top 5 ways’ for board members to raise money for your organization. With the exception of a few board governance models (e.g. Carver model), some would debate that a board member’s number one volunteer job function is fundraising. Obviously with ‘no money, no mission; no mission, no money,’ board members are vital for nonprofits to succeed. However, be careful what you ask for and of board members

Every day board members are asked to pull out their little ‘black books’ of contacts to reach those who have wealth to share and will hopefully give generously to your nonprofit. Yet before you proceed with this style of solicitation, make sure you ask yourself “are they giving to your nonprofit or to the board member?” I am not referencing the donor writing a check directly to your board member but rather a gift to appease only the board member due to their personal relationship or to truly enhance your mission.

Don’t hear what I am not saying and think I am recommending you turn down a donation because of a personal relationship among a donor and a friend. What I am saying is, that nearly 3 out of 4 new donors leave and never come back.  That means 75% of your first time, one gift donors are leaving as soon as they give. While yes that large donation from a friend of a friend of a friend is great right now – what about long term? What about next year? Most nonprofits are addressing issues and concerns that are long term. That one time, unaffiliated gift can be a golden carrot dangling before your nonprofit’s eyes to solve the top layer of any issue. But remember, every onion has many layers and to get to the core of your mission, you need long term funding.

Make sure all of your donors who give to your mission become your biggest fans. Educate them. Engage them. Enlighten and reward them. Your long term goal should be gifts number two, three, four, and so forth… not just the friends of a friend of a friend. Your donors can have unlimited access to their vacation number one, two, three and so on. By building a TravelPledge white label website your donors will come back time and time again. Who doesn’t like to vacation? If a vacation is in their future why not make the most of it and give back to a cause they are familiar with and have given to already.  This is where giving is going. To learn more please visit our TravelPledge site and build your free white label website today.

Posted in Fund Raising

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