At one point or another most non-profits experience disappointing results in fundraising. Good leaders and proactive organizations should take a hard look at their Fundraising Programs to see where change is needed. Does your non-profit struggle with fundraising? Here are the seven most common signs your fundraiser needs a facelift.
Seven signs your fundraising program needs a facelift
1) Diminishing Returns– Your profits from year to year decline despite the fact that the size of your group has grown or remained the same.
2) Volunteer Burnout– Next to low seller participation levels, volunteer burnout is a common problem in fundraising and is a symptom of running too many fundraising campaigns with too little volunteers. Less truly can be more with proper planning. Work smarter not harder.
3) Lack of Enthusiasm in your sales force– If your sellers aren’t excited about the fundraising product, how can you expect them to convince people to purchase the product and support the fundraiser? Choose a fundraising product that excites you and your sellers. A useful product that has intrinsic value is always the better choice.
4) Poor Participation– See volunteer burnout. Most non-profits rely on a group of volunteers to run their fundraisers. Failure to build a strong group of volunteers can trickle down to poor participation among sellers which translates to low profits. Cast a wider net for volunteers and share the responsibilities with a team approach. You’ve heard the expressions, “No man is an island”. Many hands make light work. This is true for most things including fundraising campaigns.
5) Competition from other groups– Are other group’s running a fundraiser at the same time as your group? Perhaps they are even selling the same product? Competition from other groups could be eating up your market as well as your profits. If you can’t beat them, join them. Consider partnering with another group and sharing the profits. The more sellers you have the more sales opportunities you will have.
6) Increased need to fundraise– We know that non-profits and schools rely on their fundraisers to cover expenses. Past poor performance in fundraising campaigns and short-sighted planning results in a vicious cycle wherein groups increase the # of fundraisers to cover the low profits which in turn contributes to volunteer burnout, poor participation and lower profits etc.
7) Lack of creativity and imagination– Don’t put your fundraising program in a box. Get off the fundraising hamster wheel and effect change. Be creative. Use your imagination. Consider what hasn’t been done before with your group and in your area. Change is good.
Conclusion: Great fundraising leaders are organized, innovative, and not afraid to embrace new ideas and think outside the fundraising box. They surround themselves with a team of passionate volunteers who believe in the goal and are committed to success! They motivate and excite their sales force towards the goals of increased sales and a growing profit margin. Now that’s a recipe for success in our book.