Nonprofits aren’t founded by people who love asking for money; they are established by people who want to make a difference. Unfortunately, making a difference requires money.
Asking for donations can be daunting and induce a lot of fear, but it doesn’t have to. Put your anxiety in the passenger seat, use the tips below, and make the ask to move your mission forward.
Research your Prospective Donor
Learn as much as you can about your donor before meeting with them. Research will allow you to tailor your pitch to the person you are asking. Also, the more you know going into the meeting, the more you can authentically connect with a potential donor.
Practice Your Pitch
Practice. Practice. Practice. By the time you are done practicing, you should be able to make the ask and respond to questions and concerns in your sleep. Practicing will give you confidence, and that is precisely what you need when meeting with a prospective donor.
Listen, I mean, really listen! What is the potential donor actually saying? What are they not saying? Ask questions to better understand them, their viewpoints, and what they think your organization should be doing. Be interested in what they are sharing with you; after all, this meeting is for you to get to know them just as much as it is for them to get to know you!
Share Why You’re Passionate About the Cause
People give to people. Sharing why you are passionate about your organization’s mission will help you connect with the prospective donor and allow the donor to connect with your organization’s mission in a more profound way.
Make it Easy
Be prepared to accept a monetary donation in whatever way the donor is most comfortable with and make sure your ask is specific, so they don’t have to guess what the appropriate amount to give is.
Be Prepared for the Worst
Enter the meeting knowing that the worst thing that could happen is the prospective donor could say they aren’t going to donate. It will sting, but it doesn’t mean you are a failure, and you will be okay.
Asking for money is difficult, but it is necessary to make your mission a reality. And remember, people, want to make a difference with the causes they care about!