The Donor Within

Raising money is hard work! Crafting the message, attending to details, and ongoing publicity all require energy and enthusiasm. Some of our campaign authors have reported that not knowing how to inspire donors to give is the most stressful part of running their Faithify campaign. There’s no denying that it takes consistent effort to run a successful fundraiser, but there IS a key to “unlock” new donors – and it’s right inside you.

“This may be the most important fundraising exercise you ever do — noticing what makes you tick when it comes to giving away your money.”

Terry Axelrod has more than 40 years’ experience in the nonprofit field. Her article, “What Do Donors Want?” details how to examine our own patterns of giving to discover what motivates us to support others financially. While the article is framed towards large scale fundraising efforts, the message applies to crowdfunding, too.

Photo by Zackary Drucker as part of Broadly's Gender Spectrum Collection. Credit: The Gender Spectrum Collection. Made available to media outlets via Creative Commons. No derivatives, no commercial use. See guidelines here: broadlygenderphotos.vice.com/guidelines

To what organizations do you give money? How much? What ways have you been solicited and how did those messages motivate you, or not! How do you like to be thanked or recognized?

Faithify is a values based platform and ALL of the campaigns on the site represent Unitarian Universalism in action. That means donors are energized by these UU values, whether they themselves are Unitarian Universalists or not. UU’s are diverse, and so are the projects raising funds through Faithify. As a campaign author, identifying your deeply held giving values will help you reach donors who will support your project.

“The key takeaway from this exercise is that you are a donor. Rather than preparing for an Ask by steeling yourself to approach a hostile stranger, imagine approaching them as you would want to be approached — as a real human being with concerns, opinions, a busy life, and a commitment to making the world a better place. It will make your fundraising efforts easier and more natural.”

If you try this exercise, let us know what you discovered or how it made an impact in your fundraising efforts. We are ready to help answer questions, solve concerns, or be a cheerleader to your project!

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