Measuring Is Essential
"I am making around five asks a month and my close rate is about 80 percent," the foundation executive director shared. We celebrated his success and had some discussion on how this could be even more effective—including engaging his board and campaign task force in the asks, and some more cultivation.
But—he was making asks! And he is counting visits and asks. And he is measuring his success rate.
Lou Anne Dulaney, one of our senior consultants, and I were visiting yesterday on client projects and she was celebrating how some donors were stepping up and asking how they can help. That's the perfect model: When we do such a good job engaging our prospective donors—and they feel such a part of the cause—that they ask us what they can do.
But like many other disciplines in our profession, we have to be out there—identifying, cultivating, engaging and asking prospective donors. The best way to ensure that this is being done is to set goals and to measure activity and success.
It's too easy to get tied to the office and in meetings. Be sure that—from the CEO to the chief development officer to anyone charged with bringing in charitable giving—there are valid, clear goals and regular measurement of how much time is spent in visits and the results.
Looking for Jeff? You'll find him either on the lake, laughing with good friends, or helping nonprofits develop to their full potential.
Jeff believes that successful fundraising is built on a bedrock of relevant, consistent messaging; sound practices; the nurturing of relationships; and impeccable stewardship. And that organizations that adhere to those standards serve as beacons to others that aspire to them. The Bedrocks & Beacons blog will provide strategic information to help nonprofits be both.
Jeff has more than 25 years of nonprofit leadership experience and is a member of the NonProfit PRO Editorial Advisory Board.