Adapting Your Fundraising Toolbox

Everyone doing any sort of fundraising these days is adapting and trying new methods, as those people they need to connect with are:


  • Not attending any in-person events, and
  • Being inundated with phone calls, emails and requests for video calls.


As you adapt your existing Democratic fundraising plan to our current circumstances, how can you use your existing fundraising tools to stand out above the chatter and continue to serve your audience appropriately, make connections and raise money? Your shift doesn’t need to be extreme. Actually, you can continue using the tools you’re comfortable with, but use them in a slightly different way.


Your fundraising toolbox should include the following; if it doesn’t, we should talk. In the next few posts, we’ll address each in greater detail and provide specific ways to use them to better connect with your audiences.


Call-time scripts:  There’s always some stress and anxiety involved with asking for support and money by phone, no matter how comfortable (or uncomfortable) you are doing it. These days, being tactful and kind in a call are even more crucial. The person on the other end needs to feel you understand what they’re experiencing, and you need to connect with them on shared values and vision. What can you say, to continue the conversation and build the engagement and connection you need?


Events: Statistically, in-person events make up around 25 percent of your engagement and fundraising plans. How can you successfully shift to virtual events, continuing that emotional connection that comes with meeting in person while still providing relevant, timely content?


Emails:  How many emails did you get today? Your audience gets the same, if not more. What changes can you make to the language, format and frequency of yours, to ensure they remain the engaging, message-appropriate, and even classy ones that get opened and answered, when everyone’s Inbox is growing exponentially?


Cultivating donor relations:  In a “normal” environment, growing and maintaining strong donor relationships takes time and effort. How can you better structure your donor cultivation program to strengthen those relationships while developing new ones and not losing sight of the tough times these individuals may be experiencing?


We’re taking our own advice, changing and adjusting how we connect with our clients, and we’ve made a few changes, in addition to starting this blog. We continue to explore new ways to be a resource and share our fundraising training and coaching guidance with candidates and their staff.


Offering Little Kicks in the Ass


Typically, we do our fundraising training and coaching in-person, flying around the country to meet candidates and staff. Since flying (or even driving) to hold in-person coaching isn’t currently an option, we’ve created our Little Kicks in the Ass coaching program. We still offer our 45-day intensive, Kicks in the Ass, but now we’re also offering a suite of one-on-one, personalized, immediately implementable lessons. These built-for-you events are delivered in shorter video sessions geared to your specific needs, from understanding fundraising basics to creating a highly effective call-time script. If you have questions about a program or need a little kick of your own, let’s talk.


Creating & delivering content through a variety of channels


Using a new channel can share your message, vision, and values further and expand your audience. Recently, Democratic Municipal Officials published advice our founder Stephanie provided in a Mellinger Group newsletter, and at the end of April, Stephanie shared her thoughts on fundraising during this time in a virtual Ampersand Strategies Quarantine Conversation. Connect with us to learn more and find new ways to communicate.


While we miss traveling and seeing our clients in person, we’re grateful we’ve been able to shift and stay connected, and we look forward to sharing more our ideas with you through these new channels. Sign up to be notified when we upload new blog posts and talk about more ways to effectively use your existing tools to better interact with your constituents, donors, supporters and potential donors.