CEO Insights: Weathering the Storm

March 19, 2020
2 min
A grid of shapes, a portrait photo of Justin Wheeler, and the words "CEO Chat".
Justin is Funraise's CEO, a co-founder, and a bad-ass, experienced nonprofit fundraiser. Like a true fundraiser-turned-founder, he breaks down the concepts behind Funraise's mission everywhere he can make nonprofits' voices heard.

Communication with your donors is key right now.

Everyone is thinking about COVID-19 and how it will impact their daily lives. Don't let it impact their giving.

So what do donors want to hear?

  • They want to know you're taking this issue seriously and that you're putting safety for donors, beneficiaries, and your staff above all else.  
  • Share with them how it's impacting your revenue. What is your anticipated loss from canceling events? Invite them to help you bridge the gap.
  • Often, in times like this, people become more generous. Is your organization in a unique position to impact this issue? If so, showcase that work and invite us to donate.

Finally, be empathetic to your donor's situation and how it's impacting them.

Some of your donors might not be in a position to give more. Know that and make sure to segment them out of any appeals going out until the dust settles. One thing we all know, when disaster strikes, humanity comes together in the most beautiful ways.

Let's see that beauty explode!

Can't listen to the video? Scroll down to read the transcript.

Video Transcript

It's tough, and I think like another thing that supporters and donors want to hear from the organization is that like, hey, I like our work is still going on. Our work is still happening. We're still delivering on our promise to do X, Y or Z. And so I think now is important for nonprofit leaders and executives to get online, whether it's, you know, LinkedIn live or recorded video for it from home or the office, whatever is appropriate. And just to address their support base and say our work is continuing. We're not slowing down. But now, more than ever, we need your support to continue. Right? Like this is not the time to stop giving. This is the time to continue to invest in our work and our activities. I think organizations need to be proactive about sharing with their donor base that like we're not just stopping everything. I mean, some organizations, maybe they are because of the areas that are working. Liberty in North Korea cannot rescue refugees right now because all of our work happens in China. It's impossible. So there is going to be a delay on that side of things. But a lot of nonprofits, this is going to impact their day to day unless their organizations that are housing people or, you know, public services and so forth. So I think is just getting out there, instilling confidence in you and your support base. These things will go a long way in weathering the storm.
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