Have you ever found yourself spending hours or even days developing presentations for major donor visits?
I think most of us have gotten caught up in the time-consuming task of developing presentations. Sometimes several staff members get involved. Board members too!
Instead, the best fundraisers know that they really need to make sure they’ve asked all the right questions before they invest time in creating presentations.
Folks, fundraising is about asking questions, not making presentations!
Questions ensure that the presentations made hit the mark later . Ask the right questions first. Do this right and you won’t have to spend as much time developing presentations—and they’ll always be right on target.
Ask the right questions first and your donors will feel at ease. They’ll trust you. They’ll feel that you are sincere— that you care about them.
For major gifts (and planned gifts) questions begin at the Discovery Phase of the relationship.
What’s that? That’s when you need to determine:
Is there a fit?
After all of your questions, if there isn’t a fit, perhaps the relationship might be dead. Or that prospect should go back to your cultivation stream. I know that’s a hard pill to swallow. You just got ’em on your caseload. But you can’t force it. And, you and your organization will be better off investing time (since time is money) working with hi-capacity supporters that fit!
So next time you find yourself spending tons of time working on a presentation, stop and think about where you are in the process. Is the presentation even warranted? And, when in doubt, just ask more questions!
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