Wednesday, February 13, 2008


Now and then I hit a wall with my calling. That's when its time to hit the bookstore. Two of my recent purchases are: "The 7 Seven Triggers To Yes" (The New Science Behind Influencing People's Decisions),by Russell H. Granger, and Perfect Phrases For The Sales Call" by William T. Brooks.

I'll write a short review of each in another post; its enough to say now that each of these books affirmed my experience as a fundraiser. phone donors give to people who can quickly establish rapport and credibility with them and, if time is short, then by all means choose rapport only.

So how does a Fundraiser build rapport in the first ten seconds of a call and secure a donation by the third minute? Here are my thoughts.

10) Speak with people, not at them. Telling strangers what they should do hardly ever works.

9) Allow the donor to speak. Don't interrupt or override, especially if a person is initially hostile. become a sounding board and allow the donor to vent long enough for you to understand their mindset. understanding and confirming a persons concerns is the quickest way to alleiviate those concerns.

In the case of repeat donors, you're allowing a person who has committed themself to a cause having little to no input over how their chosen organization carries out its work. A Fundraiser is often the only point of contact with an organization that a donor will ever have.

8) Know your cause. inside and out. study the issues and be prepared to be questioned on them. Memorizing a script isn't enough. internalizing key points won't allow you to speak with the authenticity of someone who knows a cause. In the first minute of a call many donors can tell the difference between a fundraiser who has memorized talking points and one who is a kindred spirit.

More to come...

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