Imagine Your Constituents Dreaming of You

Musician John Lennon once said, “A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.”

And how you present your organizational dreams can determine how many supporters want to make your dream a reality, according to Kay Sprinkel Grace, CFRE, a San Francisco-based organizational consultant. She explained that nonprofit development professionals should be dream brokers for donors at the recent Bridge to Integrated Marketing & Fundraising Conference, in National Harbor, Md.

Here are some steps to take now:

  • Make your dreams strong. How are you conveying the organizational dreams to donors? Think about how you set your goals and the stories behind them. Ensure that your board and staff are talking about the dreams as well.
  • It’s not about you. Your donor is so important to your organization – no matter what the size of their gift. Their dreams and their support are what sustain the organization.
  • Be transparent. You need to report back to your donors about where the money went and what impact their dollars had.
  • The world is flat. Globalization has changed philanthropy. Donors don’t just care about what is happening in their own neighborhood. Organizations have the ability to impact all corners of the world – and show the impact. The local nonprofit chapter has to compete against national and international causes.
  • Be open to change. Grace explained that for a sector that wants to change the world, nonprofits are sometimes stubborn when it comes to organizational change. Test to see if your way still works. If not, strategize to work more efficiently.
  • Use appropriate technology. Most nonprofits have mastered the Web site donate button. But technology is not just another donation channel. The Internet and mobile phones are going to shape how organizations communicate with donors. Make sure you are not left behind.
  • Engage partners and donors. Large-scale dreams require participation and innovative ideas.

Courtesy The NonProfit Times