Right now, you’re as good as your campaigns and no better. But your campaigns might not be very good because you haven’t taken a good approach to preparation. The thing is, it is almost impossible to have a good campaign, especially during Lent, unless someone gives you a good framework.
My job with the website is to give you a Catholic framework for fundraising. I also want to give it to you with such enthusiasm that you’ll take the necessary preparation to develop your own campaign, especially this Lent.
Let’s do that right now, sound good?
Let’s get down to the basics
At anything you choose to do, you’ll be as good as the preparation and practice you went through before actually doing it. The toughest thing I have to do with new fundraisers is to convince them that if they wait until they’re in front of a donor to learn what to do, it’s too late.
Fundraisers often like to wing it. That is to say, average fundraisers like to wing it. Catholics who are serious about their mission like to get fundraising right the first time because they can then get back to what matters most; saving lives and souls. So they don’t wing it – they prepare.
One of the reasons many new fundraisers think they can wing it has to do with the faulty image they have of the fundraising process. They think of fundraising as a slow-paced affair where there’s plenty of time for telling jokes, chatting about church news and the weather, and then winging their way through any unexpected challenges.
What these new fundraisers don’t realize is that, even with such a leisure approach, the grueling demands of mission work and pursuing a vocation goes very, very fast. Your mission goes on, regardless of what you raise, and sometimes this causes even bigger issues. You become overwhelmed by the lack of funds and the constant demands to help others.
Preparation develops you to respond quickly to the demands of your mission and vocation. When you can adapt more quickly, you can get on to doing what you want to do. This happens because you have time to choose your best response and approach and to deliver it smoothly.
This Lent, I recommend you take the time to prepare your campaign instead of winging it. Here are the seven steps for planning a Lenten campaign.
The 7 Steps to Preparing a Successful Campaign
Step 1 – Define Your Mission Identity and Key Messages
Step 2 – Establish Administrative Details and Confirm Contact Lists
Step 3 – Map Your Online Presence and Case for Support
Step 4 – Get People’s Attention
Step 5 – Build People’s Trust
Step 6 – Ask for Their Support
Step 7 – Follow Up and Close the Campaign
If you’ve never seen this approach, you don’t realize that all successful campaigns follow the pattern shown above. The approach is simple and straightforward, but its application is demanding and specialized for every Catholic agency. More so, it’s in a constant state of evolution. You don’t just learn these steps once, memorize the process, and then turn your mind off the subject forever.
Fundraising, especially in the Catholic context, requires constant alertness for refining your approach and for better steps. Your goal with fundraising is to align it with your mission, thereby inspiring those around you to support you while also understanding the importance of your work. This balancing act requires an unwavering commitment to preparing for your next campaign.
Join the Lent Fundraising Boot Camp
To go into further detail about these steps, each year I open the Lent Campaign Boot Camp which provides you with a timeline, plan, templates, and examples.
When you turn pro (which means that you decide to stop playing around with fundraising and take it seriously), you come up with an effective approach to your campaigns that fits perfectly with your Catholic cause.
Work this approach thoroughly and sign up for the Boot Camp waiting list by clicking here. I recommend you get on board and take your fundraising to the next level. Your mission and the people you serve deserve it.
Question: What step will you take this year to improve your campaigns? You can leave a comment by clicking here.