Five Words Fundraising Stories Should Elicit

Speakers naturally are gratified when a crowd gathers around them after a presentation, exclaiming how great they were and how impressive their work is. But how closely do you, as a speaker, pay attention to the meaning of the comments you’re hearing, particularly when you’re helping to raise funds for a non-profit organization?

Much of the feedback fundraisers hear is, contrary to their beliefs, not expressing support of their cause, according to The Rev. Eric Foley, founder and CEO of Seoul USA/.W. He says that when a person tells you after a fundraising presentation, “You’re great! Man, I could never do what you do,” that person is saying that s/he never will do what you do–or support what you do. The person is telling you that your organization’s story didn’t touch the individual’s heart.

Having trained more than 1,300 Christian organizations in the art of fundraising, The Rev. Foley has concluded that five key words tell you whether your presentation was a success. Those five words are, “I see myself in you.”

When you hear those words from an audience member, you know you’ve made a connection and won over a new donor. How often do you hear those words after a fundraising presentation? How might you improve your stories to elicit those words?



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