Now more than ever, nonprofits need friends. Unfortunately, most do not know or understand the strategic ways in which they could obtain them.
Some of these new friends belong to multiple networks, have several email accounts and have lived in several states before the age of 35. These virtual friends are ripe for the picking and they are multi-taskers – the perfect new friend to have for the longevity of your organization.
You want these new friends in your fold. You will benefit from them today by cultivating new avenues of fundraising, developing a service minded volunteer core and as future potential leaders for your board.
Educating Your Friends
Mobilizing Current Friends
You should also mobilize your friends as advocates. When you know your funding is on the chopping block – use these educated friends to mobilize on your behalf. When your organization asks for continued support from the county or state – letters or emails from hundreds of your friends speaks volumes.
Acknowledging Your Friends
Offer your friends lifetime memberships at discounted rates, give them a special bumper sticker acknowledging that there are a ‘friend’ (see the AMIGO campaign from the Latin American Coalition in Charlotte, NC http://www.latinamericancoalition.org) and keep a printed running list of your ‘friends’ in the same way that you acknowledge your new donors. Show your friends that you value their time as much as you do their donation.
Remember, friendraising is a strategic process and much more involved than this blog article, but it is a necessity. And in hard times like this – it’s good to have friends.
jenifer daniels – jenifer daniels is the "friendraiser" – a nonprofit management consultant based in Charlotte, NC. She specializes in community relations, grassroots advocacy, trainings and workshops and signature events. To find out more about her – visit her site http://www.jeniferdaniels.com/ or tweet with her at http://www.twitter.com/thefriendraiser