Almost Everything I Know About Fundraising I Learned From Christmas Carols
Editor's Note: Had there been an Advisor scheduled the Tuesday before Christmas, we would have picked up this clever post from Jeff Brooks' Future Fundraising Now blog back then. But it was too good to pass up, so keep those visions of donor-dollar sugarplums dancing in your head as you read ...
Excellent fundraisers are like angels singing out their wonderful news for the world to hear. They sing it sweetly and with gusto, because they know they're changing the world. The other kind of fundraisers — the ones who mutter their message under their breath because they're embarrassed to ask for money? They don't do so well.
Anyway, the Archangel Gabriel is the patron saint of postal workers. So there's a real connection.
Deck the Halls with Boughs of Holly
It's usually smart to deck your fundraising messages with boughs of holly or other corny holiday decorations this time of year. Really, you can hardly go wrong with holiday putz.
Frosty the Snowman
In this song, a pile of snow, a carrot, some pieces of coal and a hat are magically transformed into a living being. In fundraising, paper, ink and postage stamps are magically transformed into good deeds. It's just as magic! We should be just as thrilled as we would be by a walking, singing snowman (and considerably less creeped out).
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen
Never forget that as Christmas is to the gentlemen of the song, fundraising is "tidings of comfort and joy" to donors. They love to give. They want to be involved. You are your donors' friend; it's nothing to be dismayed about sending out fundraising messages.
O Come All Ye Faithful
No matter what your cause, it's largely the Faithful — folks who practice their faith — who are showing up and supporting you. Work with that fact, and not against it, for best fundraising results.
Over the River and Through the Woods
A disproportionate number of our donors are older and female: Grandmothers. They are well worth going to great lengths over rivers and through woods to find, because they'll be your most loyal supporters.
Santa Claus Is Coming to Town
According to this song, Santa has one heck of a database on his constituents' behavior — with real-time information on who's crying, shouting, or pouting, when they're asleep, when they're awake, when they're bad, when they're good. That's a lot more than just RFM! It works pretty well for the Big Guy in Red, and it can work for you.
We Wish You a Merry Christmas
That last week of the year, between Christmas and New Year, are merry indeed for fundraisers. Especially those of us raising funds online, when giving spikes to an amazing high.