Goldilocks Fundraising: How often is just right?
It seems people ask Ken Burnett How often should we ask?
People ask me that too. Everyone would like to know if there’s some magic number you can ask your donors — the Goldilocks Number that’s not too little and not too much, but Just Right.
Ken has a smart answer to that question:
It’s not about how often you ask…. We have to consider our timing, our storytelling ability, the donor’s comfort, interests and potential for resentment and our ability to inspire and create rapport. And the rest. There can be no optimum number to cover such an intimate and personal inter-relationship. I wouldn’t pronounce upon it any more than I might aspire to tell people how often they should have sex.
Any consultant or expert who tells you a there’s a Goldilocks Number for fundraising is just as scoff-worthy as someone who says they know how often you should have sex.
Here’s what I can tell you about the right amount of fundraising asks:
- You can probably ask more than you do now.
- I’ve never yet heard of an organization that improved its revenue by asking less.
- If you’re talking to all your donors all the time, you’re doing it wrong.
Beyond that, I can’t tell you anything useful on that topic until I know a lot about your donors. I’d be a charlatan if I tried.