Fundraising: Making the Ask
It's important to have the right attitude; fundraising does not amount to asking for a handout. It provides your friends and family an opportunity to support you, gives your supporters a chance to participate in the politics of their community in a meaningful way, and gives progressives a tangible way to promote the issues they believe in. Below are some guidelines to help you make the ask.
Do Your Research
You must know the basics about the individual you're approaching.
Make a Personal Connection
Establish a friendly rapport that will facilitate not only your initial ask, but create the basis for a continued relationship.
Make an Ideological Connection
Highlight shared values and make it clear why electing you will make a difference on the issue.
People like to back the winning horse - tell them how and why you can win.
Make the Donor Relevant
After telling them how and why you can win, explain exactly what their contribution is going to and how it will help you win. Remember, this isn't asking for a handout, it's an investment in you and the issues they believe in.
Make a Specific Ask and Shhh!
Go in knowing the specific contribution goal in advance and don't say anything in an attempt to break the silence.
Have Options Available
If your request for $500 doesn't go well, ask if they can give $100 a month for five months. Also, don't hesitate to provide additional incentives (i.e. event tickets).
Say thank you and follow up. If someone has given to you once, they're more likely to give again. Saying thank you and keeping in touch help build the relationship for the future.