23rd November 2015Alistair Lomax
The Ask Script
When you are making the ask, expect to cover each part of a structured discussion in 20-25 minutes.
Introduction – warm-up 5 minutes
Continue the discussion you had with the prospective donor in your last meeting. If you were at the same event or conference ask what they thought about it. Ask them about their family. Be prepared with some quite detailed notes and research on the individual.
Revisit the case and establish the fundamentals – 5 minutes
Why is it a good time to give? Why now? What progress has been made? What point has been reached so far? This is your opportunity to set the scene and establish a positive atmosphere.
Transitional statement – 5 minutes
The aim here is to make a connection between the donor’s interests and the aims and vision of the organisation and its current campaign. This is easier to do when the prospect has a history and is already a donor. It needs to be told as a story in which the donor can play a prominent role. Here are two examples:
When we first came up with the idea of a new university, we had no idea of the wave of support that would follow. The feedback that you have given has really helped to shape the programme. Even before the doors are open, the first course is full. The scale of what could be achieved has grown. Please allow me to share with you what needs to be done to make this great idea into a reality.
It’s because of the support that you and others have given over the years that we have an art gallery at all. That we were voted small gallery of the year is testament to the level of support that has been forthcoming in the community and the sheer quality of work provided by the artists of the region. We are embarking on a campaign to develop an education centre buoyed by this recent success. Thank you for everything you have done. Please allow me to share with you our vision for what needs to be done to make the new education centre a reality.
If you are planning to invite the donor to consider a naming opportunity, this can be introduced in the transitional statement.
In the next series in this Blog, we’ll start looking at what to say in more detail.
Making the Ask is a core part of our Foundations in Philanthropy course. For further details click here or call Alistair on 07884 196423