Updated: Sep 29
Like many others, I have had some of my best first-time fundraising conversations while sitting in Starbucks.
Even though it may be crowded with other people having meetings, friends catching up, moms hanging out, and teens drinking sweet after-school beverages, it seems to have an intimate quality. It also is neutral ground —no one has the home team advantage in a Starbucks!
You can talk and share your mission but mostly get to know your prospect in a place where no one will interrupt for a phone call (hopefully).
But what are the most important things to do while sharing a delicious beverage and maybe a croissant?
Have a specific purpose in mind. Before you go, think about questions you should ask, talking points, and pertinent stories.
Through these questions, you want to discover:
Their “Why” (when it comes to charitable giving)
What they have supported in the past
And, how they have supported a cause(s) (donation, volunteer,)
Allocate the proper amount of time. And make sure the person you are speaking to is on the same page - If you have an hour and they have half that, respect their time constraints!
And remember: This is a conversation, NOT a presentation.
Engage in purposeful small talk.
Watch for nonverbal cues.
Brainstorm ideas - How do we best engage?
Address sensitive issues (if needed).
Limit distractions - if possible.
Make a follow-up plan.
And remember, the goal of these initial meetings is to Build new relationships AND to gain understanding.
After you have wrapped up and disposed of your compostable coffee cup, follow up with what you agreed to (FAST) before the excitement wains.
Refer back to their comments, input, hopes, passions, goals in your offering, proposal, letter, email—-
To help you reach your philanthropic goals, to honor your wife, child, mother
To make the difference you hoped to make
October, the official start to Q4 is days away.
Meeting new potential donors is critical— setting up coffee meetings (which can also be breakfast at another coffee shop or at different times of day) is a crucial step as we move into the most significant giving period of the year.
Team Kat & Mouse stands ready to help you with a year-end giving plan, help you put together the right offering, and make the most of the months ahead.
Reach out today!!
Read More About: Resilience in Fundraising