Crafting a Value Proposition to Enhance Your Fundraising Strategy

Frazzled consumers don’t care about the overall goal of your nonprofit organization.

They’re happily going about their lives doing the best they can with the resources they have.

They don’t want to change anything, because for them change is work.

Your targeted donor prospects need to see that there are options they don’t know about yet.

These options are what wake them up and kick them out of their comfort zone.

Their attunement to your nonprofit organization starts with having a strong value proposition that’s highly attractive.

One that answers their question “why should I consider changing from my status quo?”

According to Jill Konrath, sales consultant, a value proposition is a “clear statement of the tangible results a customer gets from using your products or services.

 It’s outcome focused and stresses the value that you offer.”

Here are several examples of for-profit value propositions to stimulate your thinking;

  • 1Web Marketing Firm; We help retailers increase their online sales conversion rates up to 58 percent and their average order size by 25 percent.
  • 2Engineering Design Service; We help data centers reduce their power and cooling consumption from 13 to 79 Percent.
  • 3Document Management Company; We help distributors reduce their order-to-cash processing costs by an average of 67.2 percent at the same time they increase customer satisfaction.

Once you figure out your organization’s value proposition it becomes the essence of your fundraising strategy. 

Value propositions are also used in marketing and lead generation campaigns, website copy, marketing collateral, and grant proposals.

You need to stand out from the competition, that is from other organizations that are providing similar services to yours and are vying for the same donor dollars.

Let’s say that you had to choose between giving $100.00 to 2 different food banks. 

Food Bank A tells you that your gift will feed a hungry family of four for one week. 

By contrast, Food Bank B has a matching gift challenge to match 2:1 every dollar given. Suddenly your $100.00 provides $300.00 to the organization. Plus, you learn that Food Bank B partners with a local shelter to provide meals and job training programs.

Which food bank will you be more likely to give to?

With Food Bank B you feel like your donation goes farther.

Although Food Bank A may have many other programs that leverage the impact of donations, they have not entwined the value of other programs into the value proposition of their organization.

As crude as it may sound, donors have a bargain hunter mentality.

How much good work can their gift allow your organization to do?

Which charities serve the most children, or change the most lives precisely in the way that each donor wants to see the world changed?

What’s your nonprofits value proposition? What is the bundle of experiences or benefits your donors receive from giving their gifts?

Does it feel like a bargain or value? 

Is the donors overall experience with your organization one that leaves them with a sense of satisfaction that their hard-earned dollars have had the greatest possible impact?

Here are three things your organization can do right now to make your value proposition more appealing;

  • 1Interview existing donors; They’re most able to give you relevant, useful data in terms of how your organization has impacted their lives.
  • 2Engage new donors in establishing metrics. If you are confident that your organization can make a difference, the numbers you mine from engaging new donors will give you metrics you can use to make your proposition more meaningful.
  • 3Review your donor segments. Determine the primary value propositions for each segment and use them to enhance your fundraising strategy.

If you understand the value you bring to your donor audience, you’ll work harder to cultivate donors and be less discouraged by rejection.

You won’t question or doubt if there is a need for your organization because you’ll know that what you offer makes a difference.

When much of your organization’s funding comes from private donors, you need strategic processes in place to identify potential donors and communicate with them effectively.

Our eGuide entitled 10 Questions to Ask Your Marketing Team About Donor Acquisition will give you a framework for an effective donor communication strategy.

 You can download it here.

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