Jeff and I place this trait – viewing donors as partners – as a critical piece of a healthy relationship with the donors on your caseload.
Corporations, foundations and other grant-making organizations are simply groups of individuals who have agreed on what they believe it is important to fund. They are still individuals who have the same hopes, dreams and vision for our hurting planet as individual donors do.
The use of the words “prospect” and “annual fund” should be outlawed from fundraising. They create a transactional – not relational – mindset.
Many of your major donors will want to have “proof of performance.” And you will need to give them that information if you intend to keep them in a positive and rewarding relationship with you.
This “liking” bit – the second principle of influence – is really critical in major gift work. It is important to be aware of this dynamic in the relationship you have with each and every donor.
If you give first, they will give more often. If you just put these four ideas about reciprocation into effect in your donor management, it will revolutionize your relationships and significantly affect your donors’ giving.