Raising significant money does not happen without a plan. Sorry! That’s just not the way it works.
Is it difficult to create a plan? Not really. It’s hard work, but not necessarily difficult.
Here are 4 steps for creating a development plan to improve your fundraising :
1. Create a Baseline – What did you do last year to raise money?
Grants – how many were sent out and how many did you get?
Events – how many did you have? What was the cost?How much was raised? How much time and effort were involved?
Mailings- How many mailings (both direct mail and email) did you send? How many were on the lists? How many responses (from each mailing)? Average gift?
Asks – How many individual solicitations were made?
2. Set-up Goals – Ask the following:
How much do you want to raise? What are your goals and what steps do you need to take to achieve them?
What is the difference between what is currently being raised and how much you want to bring in?
What are the resources needed to raise that much?
3. Figure Out What Needs Changing – What’s worked?
Will you continue to put on the same events?
Are there new foundations you can apply to?
Can you come up with new cultivation activities?
How many individuals can you solicit?
Is there a new or different way you can work with your board members to influence them to share their contacts with you?
Will you provide them with a board retreat and development training?
4. Write the Plan Down – Write down your goals and whatever steps are necessary to achieve them? Who will be responsible for each step (a budget and a timeline, for example).
Creating a development plan that works is crucial and challenging. It’s also worth doing right. The difference between a poor development plan can mean thousands of dollars to your organization.
If you need help creating one, please let me know.