Experienced non profit fundraisers will tell you there are many steps in planning a successful philanthropy campaign. For a large comprehensive or capital campaign, one of the more critical phases is the development of the case statement. The case statement plays a key role in articulating the rationale for fundraising and energizing gift officers and volunteers while laying a foundation for future donor conversations.
The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) lists the first three questions for making the case as:
• Who is the organization and what does it do?
• Why does it exist?
• What is distinctive about the organization?
Interestingly, these are very same questions marketers ask when defining the brand of a non profit institution or other organization. So, it stands to reason that if your organization’s brand has not been clearly articulated or crystallized prior to the planning of your next campaign, it may be difficult to outline the case for giving.
Even more important is to pay attention to your philanthropy website as part of your planning effort.
“Websites are the gateway to winning support. Five years ago, only two out of three donors conducted research before they gave, but now more than 4 out of 5 do so. Only 3 percent investigate charities by reading mailings and other print materials …”
Source: Philanthropy.com, June 21, 2012
Consequently, philanthropists everywhere may want to add another step to their planning process. Do a brand check first to make sure your non profit is poised for fundraising success.