As we enter Fall 2021, all of us had hoped the pandemic would have been in the rearview mirror. Instead, COVID-19 continues to have an impact on our organizations, staff and donors. As you gear up for another season of service and fundraising, here are some things to consider adjusting in your fundraising plan.


    Talk to Top Donors

    Last year we introduced the concept of staying close to your top donors. Who’s in your tent (top donors) and who is around your fire ring (next level donors)? Reach out to these top friends and donors. Ask them how they are doing and they will naturally ask about how you and your organization are doing. What’s your plan to reach out to more top donors before the end of the year?


    Flex Your Remote Muscles

    We learned how to manage, cultivate and fundraise virtually last year. With the rise of variants, you may find some donors will not want to gather in person this fall and winter. Video and phone are still great ways to connect. You can thrive and move your fundraising agenda forward with a blended live/remote approach. Major gifts can be stewarded remotely. Even feasibility studies can be connected via Zoom. What’s your plan to reach out to all your donors, including those who are still staying close to home?


    Tell Your Better Story

    Sharpen up your case. Is it urgent and actionable? We learned how to refine our cases and appeals this last year. What will your better story be this fall? In this constantly changing world, your case needs to reflect current needs, challenges and opportunities. What’s your plan to share your case in year-end appeals and communications?


    Show Your Willingness to Accept Gifts of Appreciated Property

    Many donors will be using appreciated property (gifts of stock mainly) in the next few months. What’s your plan to talk about the benefit of these gifts for your organization and the advantages to the donor in making these gifts in 2021?


    Say Thank You

    Do you have a “thanks-for-giving” campaign planned for the time around Thanksgiving? Before asking for money at year end, don’t lose the opportunity to say thank you and tell donors about the positive impact they’ve already made. What’s your plan to say thanks in a genuine, memorable way?


    Even the best plans need refinement. Take time now to figure out where your course needs correcting, focus your case on where you're going and not just what you're lacking, and create authentic and personal stewardship plans so that you can finish 2021 strong!

    Need help doing that? Contact us for a free, no-obligation conversation. 



    Posted by Bruce Berglund
    Bruce Berglund

    Written by Bruce Berglund

    Bruce Berglund, CFRE, is the founder and President of DBD Group, a national firm providing comprehensive consulting services to nonprofits, faith-based organizations, colleges and more. Bruce is a highly sought-after writer, speaker and teacher.

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