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The truth your donors want to know

You need funds now. Urgently. And you need to communicate success to your donors. But you don’t want to sound desperate.

What do you do?

Veteran fundraising coach, Lori Jacobwith, shares an idea that will help. It’s called your ‘Money Story’.

Your ‘Money Story’ will help you communicate your real need to donors in an effective way.

It’s the financial picture of where are you today in doing your important work and where you need to be.

It’s not a budget number, it’s the real amount of funding you need to fulfill your vision.

Telling the truth with your ‘money story’ allows a donor or potential donor to know exactly what they can do to take action.

And it helps them know what they can do to fulfill their own vision for making a difference with their money.

Let’s say you are meeting with a donor. You could say,

“We are focused on closing the gap that we have of $1.2M this year. Right now, we’re at the beginning of June and we’ve raised $450,350.” You’ll need to know exactly where you’re at.

“Let me make this real for you. Jenny is twelve years old. She lives on the North Shore and goes to public school. She’s one of 70 girls on our after school Bas Mitzvah program.

One of the trips we do is to take the girls and their moms to the Illinois Holocaust Museum to be paired with a girl their age who perished in the Holocaust.

Jenny, was "paired" with Aviva Fabrikant of Lodz, Poland. When we paired her up she was surprised.

"She has the same Hebrew name as me!" Jenny said. "She was from where my grandma used to live. Her birthday is in the same month as my bat mitzvah!

She never had the chance to have her Bas Mitzvah because she was killed at such a young age. I will be having our bat Mitzvah for both of us.”

And now here is your money story.

"That program takes $800 per girl per year. The gap we have in that program is about $43,500. We even have a waiting list for this program for next year!”

Now when you share your money story like that, you are giving the important context to your donors.

You can then make your ask with confidence because there is nothing wrong with having a ‘funding gap’. You can even ask for the whole amount of the gap!

So to do your money story well you’ll need to,

  1. Share you big picture ‘money story. - Big picture need is $1.2M. Right now we are at $505,450
  2. Zoom into a specific program that has a funding gap. - Bas Mitzvah Program
  3. Be very specific how much the gap is. - E.g $42,550
  4. Make the story a people story. - Jenny
  5. Infer there is more to do. - 700+ Jewish girls of this age who would benefit

Your 'money story' is one tool in a fundraising toolbox that you’ll need so you can be even more successful in your raising funds.

Who will you share your 'money story' with this week?

B'hatzlacha raba raba,


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