Rarely are people exactly who they appear to be on the surface, thus giving reason for the adage “don’t judge a book by its cover.” This metaphor is easily extended to fundraisers. In the frantic world of appeals, campaigns, and special events, dollars tend to overshadow donors. The most successful ask, however, is one rooted in relationship, not solicitation.
Being all in with a donor is about educating yourself and engaging in meaningful communication. Philanthropy is very personal. When you illuminate how your organization complements a probable donor’s life experience, what the donor can in turn do for you becomes more self-evident and comprehensive.
Ernie Ludy’s “All In” model is comprised of the following four components:
- Human: Family, demographics, and world view.
- Intellectual: More than a job title. Discover areas of expertise, hobbies, and volunteering.
- Network: Know who they are connected with and how those connections influence the probability of giving.
- Financial: Know both capacity and giving history.