Dialing for dollars can be a really intimidating thing for people to do. You have to blindly call people that you don’t know, and unlike asking for donations in person where you can gauge someone’s body language and facial expressions, soliciting donations on the phone is a truly anonymous task. Before you get started on making your calls, read through these five helpful hints for making successful fundraising calls:
1. Ask the person permission to speak. The thing that will put people off is if you just launch right into your pitch without asking permission to speak. Be polite, let them know what organization you are with, and ask permission to tell them about your charity before getting started.
2. Smile—they can hear it in your voice. One important key to making fundraising calls is to be warm, genuine, and to show honest support for your cause. People will be able to detect if you are not authentically concerned about your cause and you don’t really believe in it. Believe that people should donate, and they eventually will. Be sure to smile when you are speaking to your listener…they will hear it in your voice.
3. Be personable and state your cause. Again, being a ‘real’ person on the other end of the line will speak volumes to your listener. Be sure to let them know how your charity helps, who it helps, why it’s a great cause, and why they should consider making a contribution.
4. Ask for a specific amount of money. Being specific is a great way to go about asking for donations. Give them a few options even, so that they don’t feel uncomfortable about potentially giving too much or too little. Suggest a few amounts and let them choose one.
5. Thank them profusely—even if they don’t donate. Thanking people is so important, even if they choose not to donate. If they do donate money, they want to be valued. If not, they will remember how polite and grateful you were for taking up their time and they may choose to make a donation in the future.