Creating a Fundraising Plan You'll Actually Use

Published on Jul 11, 2016

In fundraising, there are many emergencies that seem to arise every day – a donor needs immediate attention, a proposal is due today, or a mailing needs to be approved right now. Unfortunately, this can lead to a high level of stress and lack of health for the development program and you, the practitioner! How can we change the paradigm and create a healthy, sustainable fundraising program that leads to a less stressed out fundraiser? In this workshop, we’ll work on a comprehensive development plan that includes sustainable strategies and a realistic, workable plan for your fundraising efforts.


Creating a Fundraising Plan

 That You'll Actually Use

Why plan?

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  • Conducting a review
  • Creating your plan
  • Implementing your plan without killing yourself

Elements of a Development Plan

Plan Elements

  • Where are you now?
  • Where do you want to go?
  • What tools will you use to get there?
  • When will you do each thing?
  • How will you know when you’re there?

Conduct a Review

 Where are you now?
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"Quick and Dirty" Assessment

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"Quick and Dirty" Assessment

  • Dollars raised
  • What tactics did you use
  • Number of donors
  • Retention rate
  • Donor distribution
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"Quick and Dirty" Assessment

  • Who's on your team? (Tipping Point)
  • Will the next period be more, less or the same?
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"Quick and Dirty" Assessment

  • Current donor personas
  • Prospect personas
  • External factors
  • What went well
  • What didn't go so well
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Donor Personas

  • "Name" the persona
  • Age and other basic demos
  • Giving levels
  • Interests
  • Motivations
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Goal Setting

 Where do you want to go?

What's "success"?

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What are your big rocks? (1-3 things)

The 1-3-6 model

What one thing must you achieve to feel successful?

What three things must you do to accomplish that one thing?

What six things must you stop doing to make room for the three things?

Is your program a "plug number?


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What is
reasonable growth?

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Developing projections

  • Look at historical performance
  • Determine level of risk
  • Be conservative

Choosing tactics

 How will you get to your goals?
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What is reliable?
What generates money?

Fundraising Ideas Matrix

Show me the money

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Making it happen

When will you do all this?
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1 year. That's it.

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Initially, one quarter

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Each Week

  • Review your 12 Week Plan
  • Decide on your top 3 things
  • Break down tasks
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Each Day

  • Pick your 3 Most Important Tasks (MIT's)
  • "Eat Your Frog"
  • Do your daily ritual
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Each Month

  • Block out a "Day of Pain and Suffering"
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Each Quarter

  • Complete your metrics
  • Reassess goals and rebalance
  • Update your 12 Week Plan
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Measuring Success

 How will you know when you get there?
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Measure what you measured in the assessment stage

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Use a dashboard:
Consider the
Wheel of Life

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  • Your plan includes assessment, goals, tactics, action steps and metrics
  • Most Important Tasks will help get it done
  • Focus on the big rocks

Set a time to start

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GoalBusters Consulting