Robin Bellinger

Robin Bellinger

Strategic Partner

About Robin

The case statement is just one of many tools that development professionals have at their disposal. Taking time to customize and integrate this document into conversations with donors and potential donors will elevate the power the case statement has in inviting transformational giving.

Connecting a donor’s interest or passion to institutional vision is the difference between securing a loyalty gift and a meaningful philanthropic contribution. But the process of building a trusting relationship and locating philanthropic interest/passion that connects with institutional priorities can take time. The case statement is a great tool for effectively and efficiently moving giving to a transformational level by creating ownership of and commitment to these priorities.

Well-written, compelling case statements clearly outline an organization’s credibility and concisely depict how a donor’s contribution can make a real impact on the lives of people. They communicate the organization’s accomplishments, the problems/opportunities that priorities seek to address, and the promise of what the world will look like when the priorities are achieved – all in very human terms.

A strongly written case statement serves multiple purposes:

1. Organizational Update

During meetings with donors, development professionals can use a case statement to guide an effective and concise discussion of the impact funding priorities will make and present compelling opportunities for support. A well-written case statement can act as an agenda, allowing development professionals to more effectively assess the donor’s interest as they walk through the case statement together.

During the meeting, ask the donor:

  • Of the priorities presented, what would be most meaningful to you?
  • Is there an area of need where you would like to more involved?

2. Strategy for Working with Donors

In addition to using a case statement to drive deeper connections and define individual strategies, the case statement is a roadmap for determining the next steps in building a trusting relationship and deepening engagement with potential donors.

After the meeting, ask yourself:

  • From our discussion what questions and deliberations does the potential donor have that need to be answered?
  • What have I learned about this potential donor that should be considered in upcoming discussions?
  • Who needs to be involved in upcoming meetings?

3. Philanthropic Return on Investment

For donors who have already made a contribution, the case statement can outline successes and impact that the organization has experienced in working toward a goal. For potential donors, seeing commitment on the part of others and the subsequent impact may plant the seed of philanthropy in their minds and hearts.

Prior to the meeting, ask yourself:

  • How might I leverage case statement success stories to create meaningful ROPI for this donor?
  • How might I connect case statement success stories to identified interests/passions of this potential donor?

Case statements that are customized for specific donors and potential donors create greater impact. To achieve that end, consider creating a library of approved support materials. The library could contain such things as stories and quotes gathered from both donors and recipients, as well as language for describing funding priorities. And, update the library periodically—either adding or pruning content to reflect the organization’s changing needs and priorities.

The case statement is just one of many tools that development professionals have at their disposal. Taking time to customize and integrate this document into conversations with donors and potential donors will elevate the power the case statement has in inviting transformational giving.

Sharpen your management skills in leading your team to higher levels of performance by attending a public session of Coaching! An Intense Workshop for Development Leaders or develop and refine your skills through individual coaching with one of our certified coaches.

 

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