Welcome to the introductory post in a seven-part series about capital campaign basics. Read the entire series in order — it’s chock-full of excellent information!
- Capital Campaign Basics: 7 Steps to Success
- Step 1: Clarify Your Fundraising Goals
- Step 2: Write Clear, Effective Campaign Material
- Step 3: Develop a Gift Range Chart
- Step 4: Make a List of Prospects by Giving Level
- Step 5: Contact Your Best Prospects
- Step 6: Ask for Gifts in Person Using Gift Range Chart
- Step 7: Follow Up with Every Donor
For the past couple of months, I’ve been working with Margaret, a musician and composer, who is working to raise $15,000 for a performance of her composition in New York next year.
She’s planning to raise the money through USA Artists, a crowd-funding platform just for art projects, and contacted me because she was anxious and afraid she’d fail.
Margaret couldn’t imagine how just putting her case up on line and then publicizing the project through Twitter and Facebook would result in the money she needed. And she was right to be worried.
Margaret needs to lay a lot of groundwork with her most likely donors before she even puts up her USA Artists site if she’s going to be successful. That way she’ll have some early momentum when she kicks off her crowd-funding campaign.
Even Small Capital Campaigns Need a Plan
Margaret is a newcomer to fundraising. To her, $15,000 seemed like $1,000,000.
So when she came to me for advice, I knew I had to outline a process for her that would be simple enough so she’d feel empowered to carry through.
No complicated prospect research. No expensive contact management systems.
Margaret needed a clear common sense approach to effective fundraising, good writing skills, an excel spread sheet, a modicum of courage and a strong will to get it done.
With just a few Skype calls and passing some simple documents back and forth, I helped Margaret get her capital campaign off to a good start. She’s now in the thick of talking to donors and she’s having remarkable success.
Though Margaret’s fundraising goal is small by many standards, the simple program I developed with her follows the very same steps you will use even if you are raising many millions.
So, if you’re in the midst of a capital campaign and feeling lost, just check through these seven steps and see where you are and where you need to go! It’ll help you cut through the clutter.
7 Steps to Every Successful Fundraising Campaign
Step 1. Clarify your fundraising goals
Step 3. Develop a gift range chart
And there you have it. Seven simple steps.
Every campaign uses them, but in larger campaigns they sometimes get lost in the cloud of complexity. Cut through the fog, and this is what you’ve got.
Be sure to read through each post dedicated to these seven key steps. Use the links above or the menu at the top of each post.