The Donor Continuum

Donors usually build their relationship with us over time. Most of them start out as prospects who may be interested in our cause and may have the ability to give. We probably have little or no access to them at first, so our initial fundraising strategies usually consist of finding ways to bring them closer to us.

Eventually, some of those prospects will become donors who have the inclination and financial capacity to give to us. If we do our job well, some of those donors will choose to make a larger financial commitment, perhaps even the “ultimate” gift at the end of their life.

It takes a great deal of time and effort on our part to educate prospects to our cause, to inspire their support, and to connect them to our work. In other words, the farther a prospect is from the “inside” of our organization, the more expensive they are to turn into donors.

However, we should always be on the lookout for people who may share our values and who might like to support our work. We just have to make sure that we spend no more than 10% of our time and resources acquiring them.

Do you have questions on how to build strong relationships with key donors?

I’d like to help you learn how to strengthen those relationships! Your questions can be sent to me through the website’s contact form.

Cassandra Ramos

Senior Consultant at Wind and Water Consulting
Cassandra George Ramos’ experience extends through three Planned Parenthood affiliates, campaign consulting with Andrea Kihlstedt, leadership in several community-based nonprofits, and eight years in higher education including work as a major gifts officer at Cornell University, LeMoyne College, and the Rochester Institute of Technology. Read more about Cassandra here.

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