The Fastest Way to Turn Off Your Major Donor Prospect
We all want to have a friendly relationship with our major donor prospects, right? So we want to show up as likeable and interested in them, right?
But there is one important thing you can do to ruin your chances with a major donor. It's when you are guilty of being boring.
Step aside for a minute, and put yourself in your donors' shoes. Have you been trapped in a meeting with a boring person lately? What was it like? Were you longing for a way out? Were you desperate to get away?
What's the best way to be boring? It's when you talk too much.
If you talk too much, you're guaranteed to make your donor's eyes glaze over. You're guaranteed to bore her to tears. You're probably even guaranteed to make her wish she'd never agree to meet with you!
You may think you're being interesting … but she may think you are droning on and on.
Warning: Talk too much … at your own risk!
Too many nonprofit leaders — CEOs, development directors and board volunteers alike — are guilty of the "talking problem." Everyone thinks he or she needs a presentation that can "sell" your donor on the cause.
You don't need a pitch. You need to listen to your donor instead.
Why are listening skills more important than presentation skills? Because in fundraising, we have to follow our donor's lead. We always try to bring our donors out.
It's far more important to listen than it is to talk
As major gifts fundraisers, we pay very close attention to what is on our donor's mind so we can find out where she stands. If we want to develop her interest, then we have to know where her hot buttons are. If we want a warm relationship, then we need to know what is important to her, what her values are and why she is so interested in our cause.