Category Archives: Marketing

Relationships with Grantors – Four Tips

We love this statement by Amy Clinton, “The overall success of a grant writer should ultimately be measured by whether or not the organization for which that person is writing grants is building relationships and program credibility with funders and achieving incremental increases in grant funding revenues.”

Recently, an organization in our community saw the deletion of a grant they depended on. It was something they had received for years and at the end, the $125,000 they received last year, just went away without warning. That destroys programs and, it did! The program it funded was shut down.

Relationships and program credibility – how are you building them?

Tip #1: Share your message as often as you can with as many people as you can in the most-effective way.

Tip #2: Offer opportunities for people to be involved in your program and even invite the people within the organization/foundation granting money. They are not likely to attend but will appreciate the thought of inclusion to see how their money is being used.

Tip #3: Accept the way people participate in your program. This helps you to keep momentum going and maintains a positive perspective. A happy person says good things and can provide a testimonial for you later on. This looks good on applications.

Tip#4: Respect and appreciate everyone within your community. By this, we mean anyone associated with your mission and your organization. The same is true with those organizations offering similar services. Maintain the feeling of abundance. There’s enough to go around. Be thankful. SOAR (acronym for relationship development, which is outlined above).

Consider the following data, also provided by Amy Clinton (see her full article):

1. If an organization is submitting applications to already-established funders who know them well, they can expect:

a. For existing programs, high success rates, up to 90 percent
b. For expanding existing programs, good success rates, up to 80 percent
c. For new programs, lower success rates, generally 30 to 40 percent

2. If submitting applications to NEW funders, an excellent success rate would be 30 to 40 percent

3. If submitting applications to a combination of existing and new funders, an organization should expect a success rate of between 50 and 60 percent.


#soarwithnetworkfundraising assists organizations and individuals when they are determining the best way to GROW Community among their constituents. Increasing market share and raising money goes hand in hand. It’s easy when you choose to SOAR.

choosing to SOAR

Fundraising Goals – In the Bag!

Basically, “in the bag” means your fundraising is secured! You know it’s true because you’ve already accomplished the goal. Whew – a sigh of relief.

Last quarter of the year…is it really in the bag or are you kidding yourself?

As a nonprofit, it can be hard to focus on year-end goals when it’s only August. You undoubtably wear many hats in the organization. It can be even harder to decide what you need to do to achieve success when you’re still trying to meet Q2 or Q3 financial goals. Q4 builds powerful momentum for 2019. Speaking of ways to do this:

1. HAVE A CONSISTENT STORY TO SHARE

A story builds trust in your mission.  It has the potential to increase donations when the story is one people repeat to others. The same story has time to build momentum, and you’ll also save resources when you avoid creating something new. ALL. THE. TIME.

2. CUSTOMIZE HOW YOU COMMUNICATE

A donor is different than someone new learning about your program. Look at your connections and specifically at your monthly donation amounts. Align the way you communicate with different donor segments. Check your social media accounts to see which posts get the most engagement, and build articles for newsletters and subsequent posts based upon those topics. Share with people donating to your organization (time, money, resources).

Customizing communication increases trust in your organization.

3. APPRECIATE DONORS AND VOLUNTEERS

Connect with highly engaged donors and volunteers, who frequently support your mission. They are your advocates. They share your mission with others in a GOOD way when they feel respected. Now is the time to make sure there’s a program of appreciation in place, which is well-developed within your organization.

4. CONNECT WITH BUSINESSES AND SPONSORS

Increase awareness and revenue for your nonprofit when you grow the awareness of your organization within your community. Meet with people and share your mission. This is not asking people for donations unless they are ready to give.

Get to the top of your market because people have confidence and trust in you. Take the test! Prove it. Here’s a quick way to decipher your trustworthiness:

  • Do you serve the best interests of others?
    (Not your own interests)
  • Do you communicate all the information people need to be successful?
    (Don’t make assumptions about what you think “they can handle”. Leaders who underestimate the intelligence of their teams generally overestimate their own.)
  • Do you keep your commitments?
    (Leaders must watch their words because even a casual comment can be interpreted as a commitment.)

Keeping commitments is very important to establish trust.

SOAR is dedicated to helping businesses, non-profits and donors build community. Email us at iwantto@soarwithnetworkfundraising.com with questions.

 

Raising Money? A Result of Good Choices.

  • You have choices to make.
  • You weigh the options while educating yourself.
  • You make a choice.

This is an ideal scenario but it’s not always the way it goes.

A corporation growing market share (AKA raising money) often limits their options to what they’ve always done and then expects different results. You’ve probably heard a quote, often attributed to Albert Einstein:

“Insanity Is Doing the Same Thing Over and Over Again and Expecting Different Results.”

Insanity is a BAD choice when it comes to building confidence in your community for increasing market share. People wonder why an organization is STILL ASKING for money. Why have they NOT MET their financial goal? Will they ever be sustainable? Are they using their dollars wisely? Many times a development professional at an organization becomes the scapegoat. In reality, it costs more money to replace that professional than to work on building them into the model fundraiser. Most times, an employee challenged with raising money is so lost on what to do, they lose sleep at night, and their health deteriorates. Their self-esteem suffers. They feel they’ve let the organization down. They stop trying because it’s too painful.

Organizations choosing to SOAR lighten the burden on their fundraising professional. SOAR is an acronym for a system. People who have followed the program double awareness within two months. They increase fundraising 126% in four months. The metrics in every scenario are off the charts. SOAR only works with organizations and a fundraising professional who are willing to step outside of their box and see relationship building as a necessary tool for raising money.

CAUTION: Grants and donors seeking tax benefits are NOT guaranteed. Recently, a client lost their $100,000 block grant. It’s something they’d received for many years. Now, GONE with the blink of an eye. Fortunately, they are growing their program with SOAR. They’ve found ways to educate people about their mission. They are developing a culture with people in the community. They will survive.

Your choice is to SOAR for success. Discuss options. Schedule a quick call by clicking here.

 

 

 

Understanding Corporate Giving

By Gayle Gross

Companies are more cautious about revealing too much about their philanthropic activities, for fear of:

  • being inundated with requests they cannot fill.
  • raising the expectations of potential beneficiaries in a good year.
  • angering shareholders who may perceive the company’s charitable activity as giving away profits, or who don’t approve of the organizations or causes supported.
  • losing public support by giving to something considered controversial.

http://granspace.org is a great resource. The information above was borrowed from their website for this article.

Companies giving gifts requires a delicate balance. Engagement on behalf of the non-profit is important PRIOR to an ask.

I worked for a bank and EVERYDAY new requests for donations came in. EVERYDAY is not an exaggeration. I could add 1 – 3 new requests every day and on average it would still be correct. People the bank didn’t know came walking in the door with all of the right tools. The request letter, statement about their need, and a brochure about themselves.

Eventually, companies get the the point where there has to be a “giving back” component to the ask. What is the non-profit giving in return? Over time a strategic system began to develop at the bank. In 2017 the system was named and training others on the program began. There’s one catch. YOU have to SOAR and not be afraid to leave the ground!

At the bank, giving changed. Requests came in and they were strategically organized by which ones we could truly help. The reality was, we didn’t have a lot of money to give at the time. Instead, we did something new. The request would be for $5000 and we’d give $1000 along with resources (training) on how to fundraise $4000 more dollars. I’d sit on non-profit boards, and represent the bank through development functions. In the end, everyone grew market share! People saw the bank helping others in a new way.

SOAR goes above the basics for fundraising and lifts organizations into collaborative partnerships. Businesses, large and small, partner with non-profit(s) to create social impact where everyone benefits.

See what SOAR is…

Gayle Gross is the founder and CEO of SOAR. It’s time more businesses connect to increase market share. Collaborative Networking Events are making it happen! Email Gayle to learn more: iwantto@soarwithnetworkfundraising.com

Building Networks to Raise Money is Looking Beyond the Simple Connection

Increasing market share naturally happens when relationships are established and then cultivated to be effective, as well as, sustainable.

Networking opens doors and then it’s time to look beyond the simple connection to determine the deeper dive, which establishes opportunities for giving back.

SOAR is a system anyone can learn and implement to be more successful when growing their program.

Businesses have gained market share to more than 50% in their community within one year. Non-profits have increased fundraising 126% within four months and 371% within sixteen months.

TRICK of the trade – SOAR

  • Share your message
  • Offer opportunities for people to be involved
  • Accept the way people participate
  • Respect and appreciate

 

Spend money where money works. Board development has the potential to grow fundraising by leaps and bounds when the right process is implemented AND it doesn’t take very much of the board’s time!

Something to get started with – turn things inside out before building. Know where your fundraising program needs help.

  • Break it down
  • Determine what’s working
  • Determine if there are items you can improve upon for better results
  • Dismantle parts taking up too much of your time with no positive results
  • Feel good about the changes!

The founder and CEO of SOAR works with boards on their fundraising program. Email iwantto@soarwithnetworkfundraising.com to schedule an initial call to determine if SOAR is a good fit for you.

 

Seeking 5 Innovative Fundraisers

SEEKING 5 innovative fundraisers to become winners with SOAR!

SOAR gives back and now, one fundraiser in each of the 5 areas of the U.S. will be selected to learn SOAR’s system without cost. Send an email with “why you” described.

Send no more than 200 words by April 20 to iwantto@soarwithnetworkfundraising.com Put “Innovative Fundraiser” in the subject line.

SOAR’s system has the potential to increase gifts 126% in four months and 371% in sixteen months and we want you to WIN the opportunity to participate. The value is $8000! Your simple reason for why you’re a good selection is important. We will do phone interviews beginning April 23.

Areas for selections are diagramed below:

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Need Help Raising Money? Do a Monthly!

A monthly…what is that? It’s a no-long-term commitment month of time where you get what you need to raise more money because WE’VE been in your shoes for a very long time. We’ve heard:

“Double gifts within the next six months.” (Double $23,000, oh my…)

“Raise $7000 within the next two months.” (There’s nothing in place for where to begin, oh my…)

“Raise enough money to cover your salary.” (Oh my, oh my, oh my…)

Losing sleep was the problem for CEO and founder of SOAR, Gayle Gross. She was working in relationship development and fundraising, just like you. The goals were high and they had to be met quickly, which she was able to do…by developing a system. But, that’s not why you’re here.

There’s a program we offer, which helps to get you on track for reaching your financial goal. We call it a “Monthly with SOAR.” There’s no strings attached, no continued commitment. We begin by doing an audit of your current systems because that’s where we find the simple tweaks you can make to shift momentum! Honestly, we do what we do because not everyone has the ability to see things close up, and it’s hard to step back to see things objectively.

You begin a “monthly” by answering a questionnaire. Here’s the beginning:

  • What is your current individual goal for dollars raised?
  • By when would you like to achieve this?
  • How do you prepare for an ask?
  • What happens after the ask – when you get the money and when you don’t get the money?
  • And, so on…

We include a Link to pay in an email when you decide to move forward. But, talk to us first to see if it is a good fit. It is $225 for a month of focused direction to achieve your goal. This includes:

  • Open lines of communication, which means calls are welcome and encouraged. We take and answer questions related to your fundraising program and what you’ve hoping to accomplish
  • An audit of current systems, which includes suggested areas to tweak for better results
  • Steps are determined to accomplish goals. And, we put the parameters in place based on the audit and what we work on together
  • There’s an in-person visit (video conference for people outside Colorado Springs area) and at least one voice call scheduled for coaching
  • Fundraising templates are shared based on what you need

Businesswomen have a breakDenise at ESM in Colorado Springs said just yesterday that the calls really help her focus. She always has so many things going on and we talk once a week for twenty minutes. She feels it helps to get her back on track. She has also taken the bull by the horns and is hosting SOAR’s networking events to get the word out. Again, this is for another day!

Email iwantto@soarwithnetworkfundraising.com with your questions or schedule time to chat about a Monthly with SOAR. See the calendar by clicking this link. Gayle is the founder and CEO of SOAR. She takes time to work with everyone to accomplish their goal.

One more example: A major gifts officer from a local college just began this program. The goal is to come to you where you are, metaphorically. We begin at whatever level you’re at; beginning fundraiser or advanced officer with a desire to freshen things up.

Why People Donate & Why They Avoid You if You’re Asking for Gifts

Have you ever asked people why they give? This can be a donation of time, money, or resources. It is crucial to know why a person gives if you’re looking for donations. It is also important to know why some people may avoid you!

The top reason a person gives, believe it or not, is because someone they know has asked them to give and they want to help. Simple and sweet!

The next eight reasons for why people give, according to experience:

  1. Usually a person or someone they know is affected by what the mission is helping. They donate with a feeling to alleviate need.
  2. People give because of what they get in return. It could be a good feeling, tax benefit, recognition, or some sort of driving force they achieve for another mission
  3. People often feel emotionally moved by someone’s story. It becomes a personal connection and they have a desire to help
  4. A person wants a sense of closeness to a community or group
  5. There’s a desire to memorialize someone
  6. Charitable family traditions – it’s the way a person was brought up
  7. A person wants to leave a legacy
  8. The feeling of being fortunate and wanting to help others

Going back to the TOP reason about why people give; people asking people they know AND getting the donation.

The reality is – there’s a downside. People get tired of being asked again and again to give. The sense of obligation soon subsides and a person being asked begins to avoid the person asking. Take a simple test:

  • Are your calls going unanswered, again and again?
  • Do you feel the notes you send get lost in the mail?
  • Do you leave a lot of voice messages, which are rarely returned?

Answering yes to any of these questions shows there’s a problem. We can help. There’s a quick remedy. Read on.

Develop a fundraising system, which does not rely on the same people giving over and over again because the group you ask continues to grow AND you know them. When you ask – they will give!

At SOAR we work with progressive people and organizations. Become part of our network, Get Free Tips – click here!

We also offer a look at your fundraising system through this quiz. Click here!

 

 

Ready to Give Up on Fundraising? TALK

Have a simple conversation. There are two kinds – Motivational and Informational. They are both important when you’re ready to throw in the towel. You make these conversations happen in order to increase your enthusiasm.

Motivational conversations are with people who are: 

  • Supportive of our mission – who is that? Can you think of a couple of people who are interested in the work you do?
  • While thinking of names think about – is this person positive? Are they going to see things from a good perspective? Ask yourself – will they raise my spirit?
  • Creativity is important. A person with the ability to see the big picture and come up with ideas to help you get through the valley of doubt. KEY player!

Informational conversations remind us why we do what we do. They also increase our desire to achieve success because they happen when we are sharing our mission with others. These conversations are with people we interact with spontaneously. They are: 

  • People in stores, at restaurants, coffee shops, at the park and anyone we begin a conversation with while passing by.
  • Members of groups where we spend our time. This could be at work, church, during extracurricular activities and hobbies, or at networking events.
  • Someone we talk with at events and parties.

A conversation reminds you why you do what you do and how important your role is. NO DOUBT there are times when the amount of dollars you have to raise is overwhelming and you’d rather shut down and run to where there’s comfort. Go there, for sure, but only for a short time. Consider it an opportunity to refresh.

Need a good conversation? Schedule a complimentary motivational call with SOAR. See our calendar.

SOAR with Network Fundraising helps people all of the time! Here’s a Feb. 2018 testimonial:

Crossing the Gap of Fundraising

Answers to the following questions are your framework for crossing the gap:

  1. How do you educate people about your organization?
  2. What action steps do you have in place already?
  3. Where do you position yourself in the market?
  4. How do you plan to achieve your fundraising goal? Refer to your fundraising plan.

We began working with an organization February 8 who answered the questions the following way. The updated answers follow (2 months in).

  • How do you educate people about your organization?
    • Feb. 8 – We share our message through newsletters. We invite people to come into our office and we show them around. We do pretty good with our Facebook page. We are members of the chamber and go to events.
    • April 5 – We invite people to a networking event and facility tour at our location each month. We reach out to our partners, invite them and encourage them to become advocates because of the benefits we offer in return.
  • What action steps do you have in place?
    • Feb. 8 – We invite people to come in and learn about us. They can volunteer too.
    • April 5 – We designed a postcard invite for our networking events and tour. We give these out to people at events, and encourage advocates to share. We developed benefits for our advocates and share this with people. We train people on how to talk about our services. We talk more about our services and invite more people in. There’s momentum building.
  • Where do you position yourself?
    • Feb. 8 – We help people who are ____________. We have grown so much these last couple of years as more people have gotten to know who we are but our fundraising program is struggling. We host an annual event and two years ago we had 300 people attend. Last year we had 200. We have not met our fundraising goal but feel changing our event to a dinner will help.
    • April 5 – As a leader in the community. We educate people on services and we help people to get back on their feet. I love my job. It’s super, super busy but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
  • How do you plan to achieve your fundraising goal?
    • Feb. 8 – We will host our annual event in six months. Most people cannot come during the day so we’re doing a dinner instead of a lunch. We’ve already secured a speaker and the location. We will host in six months. Invitations will be sent to our mailing lists.
    • April 5 – Continue moving forward one day at a time. Keep this system that’s building active, among all of the other things I have to do. Our level of success is when we continue to move toward the goal. The process will take time but we will get there and it will be beneficial because of the relationships we’re building.

The statements above were paraphrased. The organization mentioned here learned about the program described in the book “SOAR with Network Fundraising” on

Screen shot 2017-12-02 at 2.51.08 PM

February 8. They have chosen to begin hosting networking events and to follow the system through consulting.

SOAR

  • Share your message with others
  • Offer opportunities for people to be involved
  • Accept the way people want to be involved
  • Respect and appreciate all people, ideas, and decisions

 

networkingeventadvocates

SOAR offers monthly, six month, and year-long programs. There is also a fundraising workshop during the summer, July 6 and 7, in Colorado. This is for people to learn the system and resource the tools to help grow a fundraising program. Learn about the different avenues to be involved through this link.