You’ve just done the best pitch, only to find out they already support your organisation, now what?

Firstly, shouldn’t you have talked with them and ascertained if they already know you and/or support you?

Fundraising, supporter acquisition time is precious – you need to be making the most of it and to not “qualify” who you are speaking with, pitching at the outset can waste precious resources.

But, having said that; when we do end up speaking with someone who already supports, we should be taking the opportunity to thank them, to encourage them to continue their support and, to also ask if they could help spread the word about the work being carried out.

If you haven’t qualified who you are talking with, you’re most likely making needless pitches; which are most likely taking time away from nurturing new supporters, but yes, you can’t afford to neglect current ones either.

It can be a fine balance – how much time and effort is needed for both segments ?

We know supporters don’t stay forever, well mostly they don’t; so you do need to be out and about, being proactive to replenish your supporter pool. In my experience nurturing new supporters is about 40 percent of your work, the rest is on maintaining the relationships you already have.

If you are spending time (some of the 40%) talking to people already on board, that’s eating away at the time you have to spend with new prospects.

So, next time you set about trying to gain new supporters, ask if they know your organisation; if they do, move them to the donor nurturing quadrant, and move on to the next cold prospect.

What are you doing to ensure your energies are being focused in the right direction?

How have/do you handle it when doing a donor acquisition campaign and discover that some of the people you’re trying to get on board are already supporters?

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