A major component to a successful fundraiser is understanding how to effectively communicate your fundraiser’s purpose and progress to potential supporters. While people are comfortable writing an email, drafting a letter or social media post, face-to-face fundraising can feel like a nightmare.
Face-to-face fundraising is the most effective method to raise money for a cause. It is also the most challenging, as it requires practice with soft skills and a good amount of confidence. Like all other skills, practice makes perfect and anyone can learn to be a great face for their fundraiser!
To help you build your confidence and face-to-face fundraising rhythm, we’ve created a list of 3 tips to get you started immediately.
Tip #1: Start the Conversation with Positivity
Expressing positivity is a great way to set a comfortable tone when talking about your fundraiser. Most fundraising causes are heavy with sensitive topics that can make it difficult for potential supporters to jump into. Positivity sets an approachable first impression, allowing you to ease into conversations.
The best way to start a positive conversation is by standing or siting tall and smile early. Good posture will help you feel more confident and better manage your breathing, helping reduce anxiety. There are also numerous studies that show smiling as a major factor in maintaining a relaxed heartrate during stressful activities.
Tip #2: Stay Curious and Learn About Your Supporters
“Small talk” gets a negative reputation as being not genuine and forced. That’s because most fundraisers fail to have an authentic interest in supporters. It’s important to remember that fundraising is a community effort. Without support from the community, the fundraiser will find a difficult time in advancing its cause.
Approach “small talk” as an opportunity to introduce your fundraiser to members of your community. Start by asking yourself:
- Who is in my community and what are they interested in?
- If you’re hosting an event or presentation, what made them want to attend?
- How can your fundraiser develop their ideal community?
The focus of these questions are centered around understanding the wants and interests of members in your community, making your conversations feel less like “small talk”.
Tip #3: Show Gratitude
Showing gratitude before, during, and after your conversations with potential supporters will help deepen your relationship, increasing the likelihood of gaining and continuing support.
Everyone wants to feel acknowledged and appreciated. Showing gratitude can make all the difference in future interactions with the community, even if they initial say “no”. There’s always a chance that they may want to support your fundraiser later. We believe so strongly in expressing gratitude for supporters that we’ve written a full blog about it.
The key to gaining confident in face-to-face fundraising is practice. The first few attempts will feel difficult, but don’t grow discouraged. Use these 3 tips to help you find your rhythm and better engage with potential supporters.
At Popcorn Palace, we want to help your fundraiser Create Joy with a tasty Gourmet Popcorn snack! Get started immediately with no up-front costs or minimum orders. All of popcorn is made fresh using all-natural flavors like salted caramel and fruit rainbow. If you raise $499 or more in amounts due to Popcorn Palace, we’ll handle your shipping in the contiguous U.S. for FREE!
Learn more about our fundraising programs by filling the form below.
 Lindsay A. “Forcing a Smile Genuinely Decreases Stress”. The Atlantic. http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2012/07/study-forcing-a-smile-genuinely-decreases-stress/260513/