Here are some tips to help you get started on developing a donor base- an essential ingredient to start increasing the donations that your community group needs to survive! These tips were created from notes we took at the CoCo event “Charting the Journey: Fundraising in Quebec”.
Tips on How to Develop a Strong Donor Base
- Collect names at events etc. You can use these for followup communication, statistics, and solicitation.
- Hold events for visibility, and to advance your mission. Make them reccurent for even better results.
- Have a strategic plan that will allow you to have a clear vision, to prioritize donor outreach activities, and allow you to do aligned and targeted outreach.
- Strong and clear communication (emails, letters, bulletins etc). This helps you to attract and retain donors, and upgrade communication with existing ones.
- Research new donors through public information and through your personal networks
- Database to keep track of donors, that is kept updated, organized and accessible.
- Engage in Donor recognition. This can include things like naming categories, regular thank yous, plaques, tags, invitations, profiles of the donors, and cards (holidays and birthdays).
- Exchange/purchase lists of donors, such as direct mail and telemarketing lists.
- Collaborations with other organizations including on mailing lists, hiring consultants together to learn more about fundraising.
- Partnerships/Associations can help with visibility, information, capacity, and getting a broader reach.
- Solicit/“Friendraising”. This looks like personal phone calls, door to door, emails, facebook etc, tabling.
- Website. Have a Canada helps link (for electronic gifts), keep it updated, have internal capacity to do website work.