How To Test & Refine Your Fundraising Script

fundraising script secrets

How To Create & Refine Your Fundraising Script

Have you ever approached an EOY conversation with a donor unprepared?  If your answer is yes, then you know the agony of jumbled words, awkward asks, and curious faces. If your answer is no, then save yourself now before it’s too late! We are on the SEVENTH week of our email series, 2023 Fundraising Checklist: How To Prepare For An Incredible End Of Year. This week, we’re discussing the reasons you should craft a fundraising script and some significant things to keep in mind while writing. You know the importance of raising money for your organization. You also have been doing this long enough to know that preparation for giving conversations can make or break your goals. Keep reading for a few reinforcements as to why a script is the best way to prepare, and how to use it to the very best of its ability!
  1. The power of story

A well-crafted fundraising script should read like a story. One where you’re the guide, helping the hero (your donor) solve a problem with a solid plan. Tell them a compelling story that clearly states the above: the problem, the solution, the plan, and always go back to THEM being the hero.  I’m not saying to add cotton candy and butterflies to this script. We don’t need to get theatrical and dress in costume. Please don’t. We just need to communicate in a way that offers emotional connection and a new perspective. That’s the power of story. 
  1. Test your script

  • It can be scary to share your script before it’s fully ready. It’s vulnerable. BUT, testing your script is the best way to ensure it will work. Get with colleagues, board members, and family/friends to practice and refine your script. 
    • Ask them specific questions about how it resonates
    • Provide a couple of options or wordings and ask how they differ
    • Remind them you need honest feedback, not just a pat on the back. Your funding depends on it!
  • When testing your script with board members and/or teammates, make sure they agree that the message in your script communicates and comes across the right way. Are you clearly articulating the true mission and needs of this year? Is your call to action representing your greatest need?
  1. The refinement process

  • Don’t be afraid of testing your script with donors. Try A/B testing where you create two slightly different versions of your script and use them in separate fundraising calls or campaigns. By comparing the results, you can determine which script performs better.
  • The next step in testing your script could be getting direct feedback from donors. Consider asking for feedback from donors who have interacted with your script. Their insights may be the most poignant in where you could improve your script for your future conversations with other donors.
  1. A script that does more than communicate

  • By positioning your donor as the hero of your organization, you integrate them into the fabric of your narrative for lasting impact. A well-crafted script boosts initial contributions and also helps build lasting relationships with donors, encouraging them to stay engaged and invested.
  • A really great fundraising script will do more than communicate a good story. It will encourage your donors to give more funds to your organization, it will trigger more conversations about your impact, and it will inspire referrals!

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What about a fundraising phone call script?

You may be wondering if fundraising scripts work over the ph0ne. Here’s the secret. If you need to use words to communicate your nonprofit’s value, then you absolutely need to have a script handy.

Phone calls remain a powerful tool for connecting with potential donors and securing vital support for your cause. While the idea of cold calling might seem daunting, having a well-crafted script can make all the difference in achieving fundraising success.

A fundraising phone call script serves as a roadmap for your conversation, ensuring that you convey your message effectively and persuasively. It guides you through the essential elements of the call, from introducing yourself and your organization to clearly articulating the purpose of your outreach.

With a well-structured script, you can confidently engage potential donors, highlighting the impact of their contributions and addressing any concerns they may have. It allows you to tailor your approach to each individual, building rapport and establishing a connection that can lead to a lasting relationship with your organization.

So, are you ready to grab your telephone fundraising script and make a difference? Remember, a well-crafted script is your key to unlocking the potential of phone calls for fundraising success.

How do you write a fundraising script?

Fundraising scripts don’t have to be complicated, they need to position your donors as the heroes of the story and call your donors to action. Here are a few steps to follow:
  1. Make the conversation about your donor
  2. Clearly explain the social impact you have made or will make with their funds
  3. Utilize impact metrics: Focus on outputs and outcomes
  4. Share stories of transformation from your programs
  5. Cast an inspiring vision of the future that you co-create with your donors
  6. Call your donors to action
  7. Rinse and repeat

Here’s a fundraising script example:

Introduce yourself and your organization

“Hello [donor’s name], my name is [your name] and I’m calling from [organization name]. We’re a non-profit organization dedicated to [mission statement].”

Establish a connection with the donor

“I’m reaching out to you today because you’re a valued supporter of our organization. We’re incredibly grateful for your past generosity, and we wanted to share with you the impact your contributions have made.”

Highlight the impact of their contributions

“Thanks to your support, we’ve been able to [share specific examples of how their donations have made a difference].” Remember, focus on outputs and outcomes.

Share a compelling story

“I’d also like to share with you the story of [name of beneficiary]. [Share a brief story that illustrates the impact of your organization’s work].”

Cast an inspiring vision for the future

“With your continued support, we can achieve even greater things. We envision a future where [share your organization’s vision for the future].”

Call the donor to action

“I can’t tell you how grateful we would be if you made another donation of [suggested donation amount] today to help us continue our important work?”

Address any concerns and answer questions

“I understand that you may have questions about our organization or how your donation will be used. I’m happy to answer any questions you may have.”

Thank the donor for their time and consideration

“Thank you so much for your time and consideration. We appreciate your support.”

Remember to test and refine your script

Practice your script with colleagues, board members, and family/friends to get feedback. Consider A/B testing with donors to see which version performs better.

Next Steps

Are you convinced that you need a fundraising script? I hope so, and I hope you use it and see the enormous returns in your funding this year.  If you need help crafting your script, we would love to help you write or edit the story you tell your donors so that you receive the funding you need to have a successful season. Let’s talk! Next week, we’re rolling over to WEEKLY EMAILS. Yeah, you heard that right. We’ll be showing up in your inbox every.single.Thursday. Our goal is that these emails are overwhelmingly helpful to you and the success of your organization.  There are 4 more weeks in our Fundraising Checklist series- so get ready to tie up all those loose ends before the end of the year! If you want to be the first to find out more about ways you can grow your organization and scale your impact, subscribe to the Nonprofit Post or take our free Fundraising Quiz. We have a free course that accompanies the quiz that we know you’ll love.
Chelsea Stoenescu

Chelsea Stoenescu

Director of Marketing for Social Impact Solutions & editor for the Nonprofit Post

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