Who is endorsing your fundraising? Are you out there on your own asking for money, or have you reached out to people who can endorse your plans? Taking time to secure endorsers before you begin your fundraising can pay off handsomely. Think of it this way, what if people don’t know your organization, but share common values and a common vision? How would they know whether or not your nonprofit is credible and trustworthy? One way is to look at who is endorsing your work and your fundraising.
What an endorser can do to improve your fundraising. A credible endorser provides inferred credibility for your organization. Your endorser will have done their homework on your organization and be confident in telling others, “I trust them.” When someone endorses your nonprofit there is the implication that you are operating with high standards, and that your relationships are meaningful and solid. Endorsements open doors to new audiences, donors, and volunteers who otherwise might not know about your nonprofit. When a business or individual endorses your nonprofit and its fundraising, they communicate that they believe in your mission and vision, the impact you make on the community, and that you have the capacity and infrastructure to do what is promised. An endorsement encourages peers of the endorser to support your work.
Who should be my endorser? You want endorsers who you know and trust and who other people know and trust. Your endorsers should have a track record that means something to your potential donors. Some call it name dropping: we say absolutely! Start by looking at who currently gives their time, money or other resources to your organization. Think about those on your advisory committee, local businesspeople, community leaders, faith leaders, and those who have been positively impacted by your work.
How do I get an endorser? Let a potential endorser know what you are doing and what you want to accomplish. Make your case and then ask one or all the following. Can I use your name? Will you help me open doors? Will you be an advocate for our cause? Would you write a letter on our behalf? Would you let people know you are supporting us? Can people call you when they are considering making a gift/grant to us? Can I use a quote from you on our marketing and campaign materials? Would you display information about our organization in your office or on your website or in your store stating that you proudly endorse our work and fundraising efforts?
Hopefully, your donor wall is one of your most powerful lists of endorsers. Keep it prominent, current, and engaging. Keep it on your website and in your offices or program sites. People can increase their confidence in your work as they learn who is associated with your organization. You want to make your fundraising as easy as you can: endorsers help you do that. Don’t go it alone: ask for endorsements and then use them.
[Copyright 2022 – Mel and Pearl Shaw of Saad&Shaw – Comprehensive Fund Development Services. Video and phone conferencing services always available. Let us help you grow your fundraising. Call us at (901) 522-8727. www.saadandshaw.com.]