Who to invite to your major donor event: the looking glass version

It seems that this a subject people are ‘googling’ and given my previous answer involved the tweedles I figure I should contribute something a tad more meaningful. So here it is…

The answer is: your donors.

I kid you not.

I list this because I don’t know how many times I’ve had people suggest a wealthy individual with no connection to the cause as their first point of call. In these cases, I don’t even have to ask my usual question – ‘what do you hope to achieve by having this event?’ – as their agenda is clear. Unfortunately their target is wrong!

Ok, so let’s assume your thought was your existing donors. Which ones should you invite?

I give you the data monkey’s mantra: ‘it depends.’ This answer is generally followed by a whole stack of questions:

  • Where are you having the event?
  • What style of event is it?
  • Is it sit down or standing only? (Very pertinent to many elderly donors)

The list goes on.

To avoid the irritating ‘it depends’ answer (and probably to get a better fundraising result) I suggest a new approach.

Stop asking ‘who should I invite to my major donor event’  and approach the task the other way around.  Start with knowing which major donors you wish to engage and then decide what the event should be. After reviewing who the donors are you may decide that an event isn’t the most appropriate mechanism!

In conclusion, if you try the above let me know how it works out for you. If you stick with asking ‘who should we invite to our major donor event’ then the answer is…

…it depends!


Posted on July 6, 2011, in Fundraising, Major Donors, Not for Profit and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. Yes! That is all.

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