Avoid Donor Blindness

Donor relations blindness

Don’t develop donor relations blindness! One symptom of this deadly marketing disease is the test ban. This is not a nuclear arms treaty. This is a reluctance to test marketing packages or concepts before committing to use them with your entire donor family. Perhaps the notion sounds too mechanical, too “Madison Avenue,” for a Christian ministry. Maybe it sounds like a lack of faith to test an idea before using it unilaterally. But it can also be seen as a matter of good stewardship of your ministry’s financial resources. If you mail a package to your entire file and it only raises half the money you need, don’t you feel guilty about the loss? To the ministry leader who says, in essence, “I don’t test; I just trust,” we offer this encouragement: Testing doesn’t reflect a lack of faith; rather, it reflects a sensitivity to your donor.


About Gary Coiro

Nonprofit & Church Leader Nonprofit Leader and Consultant since 2004, following 15 years as a pastor. Competencies include board development, fundraising, staff development and management, strategic planning, church work, Bible teaching, and capital campaigns. Currently consulting and serving on the Church Ministries Management Team for a large multi-cultural evangelical church.
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2 Responses to Avoid Donor Blindness

  1. I appreciate your thinking. What is the best strategy for staff development? If you only have one office, how do you make sure that who you choose will be compatible with the other, will have the necessary gifts and talents, but may not have every skill for that particular nonprofit organization. In other words will they be willing to do some overlapping work. I’m assuming that most office personal will be females. Can you share how staff development evolves for the best?

  2. Gary Coiro says:

    Helping staff recognize the importance of relating with and valuing partner input is key. Hire wisely to have all of your needs met – and certainly smaller organizations need ‘generalists’ to complete multiple tasks.

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