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FUNDRAISING 101: The Basics. Presented by John Howard February 27, 2008. Where are we going?. Section 1: Laying the Groundwork About John Howard Why Fund-raise? Whose job is it? Attitudes needed for success General Principles Money-making vs. fund-raising (development).

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fundraising 101 the basics

FUNDRAISING 101: The Basics

Presented by John Howard

February 27, 2008

where are we going
Where are we going?
  • Section 1: Laying the Groundwork
    • About John Howard
    • Why Fund-raise?
    • Whose job is it?
    • Attitudes needed for success
    • General Principles
    • Money-making vs. fund-raising (development)
where are we going1
Where are we going?
  • Section 2: Bringing in the Dough with Money-making Projects
    • Overview
    • Specific types of money-making projects
    • Benefits and Drawbacks
    • Building Ownership through involvement
  • Case Study – Peoria Heights P.L.
  • Short Break
where are we going2
Where are we going?
  • Section 3: Building Long-term Funding through a Development Approach
    • Overview
    • Understanding Donors
    • Asking for Money
    • Library Annual Fund
    • Major Gifts & Memorials
    • Planned Gifts
    • Capital Campaign
where are we going3
Where are we going?
  • Section 3: Building Long-term Funding through a Development Approach (continued)
    • Recognition and Acknowledgment
    • Do you need development staff?
    • Role of the Library Director
    • Creating a plan for fund-raising
    • Summary – Where to go from here
why fundraise
Why Fundraise?
  • You tell me – why are you all here? 
why fundraise1
Why Fundraise?
  • To offer new services
  • To offer existing services better
  • To better fulfill your mission
  • To make your community a better place
we don t fundraise
We don’t Fundraise…
  • To pay the bills
  • Because we need something
  • Or else!
who is responsible
Who is Responsible?
  • Ideally, a high-powered group of community leaders so devoted to your library that they will offer time, talent and treasure
  • Reality – multiple answers
    • Board, friends, volunteers, staff may all be involved
attitudes needed for successful fundraising
Attitudes Needed for Successful Fundraising
  • Unshakable conviction in the value of your library
  • Belief that people are willing to give
  • Belief that, even in bad times,

wealth exists in your community

  • Willingness to step outside

your comfort zone

why is your library important
Why is your library important…?
  • Elevator Speech – short statement that you could share while riding in an elevator.
    • No more than 2 sentences
    • No more than 50 words
important rules of thumb
Important Rules of Thumb
  • The best gifts are win-win propositions
    • Have donors thank YOU
  • People tend to repeat pleasurable experiences and avoid painful ones
    • Help donors to enjoy their gift
  • How you acknowledge the last gift determines whether you get the next
  • Never beg – create partnerships
  • Good planning precedes good fund-raising
    • The $10,000 question
fundraising vs moneymaking
Fundraising vs. Moneymaking

Moneymaking:Engaging in activities that will create a profit that will be used to support your library

Fund-raising: Creating long-term relationships with people interested in your organization, and letting them invest in your library

types of moneymaking projects
Types of Moneymaking Projects


  • Examples
  • Used Book Sale
  • Bake Sale
  • Cookbooks
  • Book bags
  • Coffee
  • Community garage sale
types of moneymaking projects1
Types of Moneymaking Projects


  • Drawbacks:
  • Relatively low profit potential
  • Possibility of losing money
  • Competition with local businesses
  • Benefits:
  • Low pressure
  • Easy to do
  • Depending on product, may raise $$ from people unaffiliated with library
  • Unthreatening way to involve volunteers
types of moneymaking projects2
Types of Moneymaking Projects


  • Drawbacks:
  • Varying profit potential
  • For best results, need a sizable sales force
  • Requires researching and following local laws
  • Benefits:
  • Low cost with donated prizes
  • Straightforward
  • Depending on prize, may raise $$ from people unaffiliated with library
types of moneymaking projects3
Types of Moneymaking Projects


  • Examples:
  • Luncheons/dinners
  • Musical or Theatrical Performances
  • Golf tournaments
  • Dances
  • Festivals
  • Trivia Nights
types of moneymaking projects4
Types of Moneymaking Projects


  • Benefits:
  • Can be FUN!
  • Good way to build visibility for library
  • May be built around the interests/skills of your volunteers
  • May give opportunity to share library’s “story”
  • Need good attendance to make $$
  • Drawbacks:
  • Can be LOTS of Work
  • Very dependent on timing
  • Can be high stress
  • Small to moderate $$ potential until established


Voluntary involvement in your mission moves volunteers from interest to involvement to ownership

case study

Taste of Peoria Heights

Marsha Westfall

Peoria Heights Public Library

building long term support through a development approach

Building Long-term Support through a Development Approach

Primary Goal: Long-term, mutually beneficial relationship with community members

overview of the development approach
Overview of the Development Approach
  • Identification
  • Cultivation
  • Solicitation
  • Acknowledgment
  • Cultivation
  • Solicitation with upgrade
understanding your donors
Why do donors give?

Personal belief in project/organization

Gratitude – “I have been served”





Drake Univ.

Donor Life-Cycle



Annual Gift

Major Gift

Ultimate/Planned Gift

Donors/Volunteers/ Donor-Volunteers

Understanding Your Donors
asking for a gift
Asking for A Gift
  • Levels of effectiveness (Best to worst)
    • Peer asking peer face to face
    • Non-peer/staff asking face to face
    • Peer asking peer via telephone
    • Non-peer/staff asking via telephone
    • Personalized customized letter
    • Personalized customized email
    • Bulk Mailing
asking for a gift1
Asking for A Gift
  • Best gifts happen when the right person asks the right person for the right gift at the right time
    • (Not very common)
  • Demonstration
  • Practice opportunity
types of fundraising activities1
Types of Fundraising Activities


  • The Annual Fund is the foundation/basis for development style fund-raising.
  • Through the Annual Fund, donors are identified then brought along through the donor lifecycle.
  • The Annual Fund includes a combination of in-person, events, telephone and mail activities, along with significant acknowledgment activities.
  • Any library can run an annual fund.
types of fundraising activities3
Types of Fundraising Activities


  • A capital campaign is a focused, high visibility short-term effort to raise significant dollars, usually over a 3-5 year period
  • Capital Campaigns are most often held for building projects
  • Capital Campaigns are most effective when they grow out of an annual appeal, but they can be an effective way to jump-start an appeal
  • Capital campaigns are expensive and labor-intensive
types of fundraising activities5
Types of Fundraising Activities

Planned Giving

Ex-resident leaves Monticello library $2 million in his will

MONTICELLO - A few years ago, Allerton Library director Lisa Winters received a thank-you note from a woman who she had helped with her research."At the end she said, 'My friend, Max is going to leave you something,' " Winters said. "I thought: He's going to leave us his books."

Winters later received a phone call from Tom Finseth, a close friend of Max Hency, a former Monticello resident, who told her Hency was leaving the library a large donation in his will. Just for fun, Finseth asked her, "What would you consider a large donation? "Winters, who has worked at the library for 29 years, knew exactly what would constitute a sizable contribution."I said $1,000," Winters said. "We have had several gifts a little over $1,000, but I don't recall anything more than that."

Max Hency, a retired Navy commander who graduated from Monticello High School in 1941, left more than $2 million to Allerton Library. The library received the first installment of $1,990,000 in January and is expecting to receive another, much smaller check in the future.

"Overwhelming is the best word to describe it," Winters said.

types of fundraising activities6
Types of Fundraising Activities

Planned Giving

  • The largest gift your library will ever get is likely to be a planned gift
  • Although some gifts are made during the donor’s lifetime, most are made at the time of the donor’s death, when they no longer need the money
  • There are people ready to make planned gifts to your organization right now
  • Donors without children are particular prospects
  • Many planned gifts take time to ripen – years of volunteer involvement or gifts to the annual fund lead up to the provision for a planned gift
recognition and acknowledgment
Recognition and Acknowledgment
  • Acknowledging and recognizing gifts well leads to more gifts
    • Thank, but don’t just thank. Involve the donor
  • Creating some basic policies is important
  • Websites give us an entirely new and exciting way to recognize gifts
  • Don’t be afraid of your donors
creating a plan for fundraising
Creating a Plan for Fundraising
  • What does your library need to do to move forward?
    • What will it cost?
  • Set a goal for coming year
  • Choose activities to reach that goal
    • MM, FR or both
  • Start a team
  • If necessary, start small
  • Build on your successes
getting the help you need
Getting the Help you Need
  • Alliance Innovation website resources
  • Working with a paid consultant
  • Hiring development staff
    • Train, train, train
  • Further workshops
    • Capital Campaigns (Annual Fund?) - April 30th
    • Planned Giving – June 25th
    • By request as availability allows
  • Attitude is the most important thing
    • “My library is important and deserving of support!”
    • “There are people in my community very willing to support my library!”
    • “We can successfully move our library ahead!”
    • “There is money out there for the asking”
    • “What does not kill me makes me stronger”
thanks to
Thanks To:

Genna Buhr

Lee Logan

Jillian Rebmann

The folks at Peoria Heights

Kitty Pope and Lori Bell

My wife and family

And all the little people who helped make me great…