Are you a schmoozer?

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Greg Warner is CEO and Founder of MarketSmart, a revolutionary marketing software and services firm that helps nonprofits raise more for less. In 2012 Greg coined the phrase “Engagement Fundraising” to encapsulate his breakthrough fundraising formula for achieving extraordinary results. Using their own innovative strategies and technologies, MarketSmart helps fundraisers around the world zero in on the donors most ready to support their organizations and institutions with major and legacy gifts.

If you think fundraising is about schmoozing, please change your attitude quickly or leave the profession.

Several times I’ve heard fundraisers say that they’re good at schmoozing or I’ve seen schmoozing happening in person, and it’s disgusting.

The first definition when you Google schmooze: “talk with someone in a lively and friendly way, typically in order to impress or MANIPULATE them.”

Pretending you care about someone or exaggerating how wonderful someone is so you can manipulate them into giving money to your organization is despicable.

Many times, people of great wealth struggle with people wanting to be in a relationship with them only for their money.

They can smell it from a mile away.

The best-case scenario is that the donor will notice you’re a schmoozer early on and end the relationship early.

The worst-case scenario is that you will be so good at manipulation that they believe you truly care about them and give a meaningful gift only to find out later that it was all an act.

Be yourself when you’re with your donors.

And for the love of all that is good and holy, please stop schmoozing.


Post written by our good friend Kevin Fitzpatrick owner of One Visit Away, a consulting business helping leaders of nonprofits schedule more and better visits with their benefactors.  Kevin’s goal is to help fundraising professionals constantly seek to deepen their relationships with their benefactors.  After all, you’re just One Visit Away from growing your mission and your impact.  


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2 responses to “Are you a schmoozer?”

  1. David Barker says:

    Absolutely. Ask good questions of people and listen to the answers, taking note of things that will be helpful in developing the relationship. Schmoozing = losing.

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