Monday, September 15, 2008

The Hitch-Hiker's Guide to Major Donors - in action

Just before I left Canada last month, I did a job for Amnesty International Canada - our first big job in North America. We were looking together at their major donors, identifying potential people and then going through the hardest bit: asking.

I play a naughty trick, ensuring that the training finishes an hour ahead of schedule and then making the attendees actually call some donors to say thank you, and make some appointments.

I have found that this helps build confidence and get some momentum going.

Anyway, as time was ticking along one of the callers got into a conversation with a lovely donor.

At first he agreed to an appointment, then when he thought about it more, he decided it was too difficult. But our Amnesty International Canada colleague was charming, involving and listened well. By the end he had agreed to make a donation there and then of $10,000. His previous largest gift was $1,000.

What a great bloke. The amount he gave was exactly 10x previous largest gift - and also the amount the training had said we should ask for.

The training session was a bespoke version of my "Hitch-Hiker's Guide to major donors" session which has been presented at various conferences around the world, most recently in London at the IOF, and soon (by Jan Chisholm, Pareto Fundraising CEO) at the AFP in New Orleans in March.

The presentation is below and an article explaining a bit more will be posted on this blog this week!

Sean Triner

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