To create a strategic fundraising plan, you first need to identify your current and prospective donor. Once you understand them, you can create an effective plan that focuses on their interests, needs, and expectations. This will narrow your focus and create a more defined method for engaging with your donors.
Defining Your Donor
In the private sector marketing world, there is a commonly used term called a “buyer persona.” This is a description of the "average" potential customer for a company, and it is a way to make sure all of their marketing efforts are being targeted to the correct audience.
While we don’t have buyers in the nonprofit world, we do have donors. And creating a “donor persona” of sorts can help your organization better fundraise to the people you are trying to reach.
Understanding your donors is important on a general level and an individual level. Let’s take a look on the best way to define both your individual donors and your larger prospective audience:
How to Define Your Comprehensive Donor Base
When defining your donors (which includes current and prospective) for your organization, remember to think general. Define common attributes that will help you find and connect with your prospects.
Characteristics to Consider:
Note: Your organization has many different donors, so it will have many different donor types. Create as many descriptions as you need to encapsulate as much of your donor base as you can. You will never have every single one of your donors defined, but it will give you a better big picture sense of who you are trying to build a relationship with.
How to Define Your Individual Donors
Now that you have defined your general donor base, it is important that you do the same with your individual prospects. At the most basic level, when you are working to understand an individual, you need to define their linkage, ability, and interest in your organization.
Understanding and being able to define your prospective donors will help you focus on the most optimal and strategic fundraising methods for them. Having this information to refer back to can help you brainstorm creative and effective ways to connect with and build relationships with the people that want to support your cause.
How well do you know your prospective donors? Have you ever created a "donor persona" or something similar? Share in the comments! We also love to hear your questions and concerns so we can continue to make our blog better for you.