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11 questions that donors ask themselves

Just as it’s easier to take a test when you know the questions you’ll be asked, fundraising can be made easier by knowing what potential donors are thinking.

During “Why Developing an Integrated Marketing Program Must be Your Number One Priority” at the recent National Catholic Development Conference event, Don F. Olson, owner of DonO Communications in Michigan City, Ind., shared the 11 questions every donor asks themselves.

  1. Why me? The key to fundraising is the ability to help donors understand how your mission complements their personal interests and how, with their gift, you can achieve something they value.
  2. Why are you asking me? The potential donor might wonder what your motives are, who else has given and whether you have given.
  3. Do I respect you? Sincerity and trust are factors here.
  4. How much do you want? This question is followed with how much should be given.
  5. Why your organization? Remember to engage with a story. Stories are remembered and facts are forgotten.
  6. Will my gift make a difference? This is a core donor question. Emails and blogs are a good means of answering this question.
  7. Is there an urgent reason to give now? Social media is an effective means of getting the word out.
  8. Is it easy to give? Easy means of giving include a simple click on a homepage or automatic monthly deductions from a credit card or bank account.
  9. How will I be treated? Immediately send a “thank you” note out featuring the amount given. Continue to communicate with non-ask letters, emails, phone calls and visits sprinkled in with calls, letters and emails from higher-level members of the organization.
  10. Will I have a say over how you use my gift? This generally depends on the size of the gift. Listen to their concerns and assure them that you will meet their goals.
  11. How will you measure results? All donors want some sort of feedback whether it is through stories or numbers. Stories are preferred.

As we celebrate our 36th year, NPT remains dedicated to supplying breaking news, in-depth reporting, and special issue coverage to help nonprofit executives run their organizations more effectively.