Stop Fundraising

by | Apr 26, 2019

If you work in CCM radio, you are a fundraiser. The majority of stations are listener-supported and even if you work at a commercial station, you likely do third party fundraisers.

Well, stop it.

Fundraising is about you. Conversely, people’s decisions to give are about them. Stop Fundraising and start Vision Casting.

In the 2016 U.S.(r) Trust Study of High Net Worth Philanthropy, they looked at factors driving charitable giving among wealthy households and found that “a majority of high net worth households base their giving decisions upon their personal values (76.4%), as compared, for example, to others’ values, obligations, etc.”

People give because of a personal value or belief that they hold. That’s true for donors at every giving level.

Remember the ridiculous Ice Bucket Challenge videos in 2014? They raisedover $115 million for the A.L.S. Association, not because millions of people were suddenly moved to support the association. People gave money and posted videos of themselves being drenched with ice water because they wanted to feel a part of something their friends and celebrities were doing. They valued social connection and wanted to join a movement.

What’s the movement you are championing? It’s not an organization. The organization is merely a conduit to making a change in the world. Whether that’s to inspire hope for listeners, help kids with disabilities, or feed people in need. In This is Marketing, Seth Godin emphasizes three critical questions for every organization:

  1. What change are you trying to make?
  2. Who are you seeking to change?
  3. What promise can you make to your potential customers? (Hint: your promise needs to connect to the change you want to make in the world.)

Once you answer those three questions, you can invite those people to join the movement by offering them tangible ways to live out their beliefs.

Provide proof of mission year-round with testimonials from listeners. One way to accomplish this is by sharing stories for the weeks and months leading up to your fundraiser with listeners explaining how the station helped them. Then, during a fundraiser, you are merely providing an invitation to join that mission your listeners have already clearly explained to one another.

Encourage the people on the air during fundraisers to get their head out of the studio and into the life of your listener. For example, instead of staying “we need”, say “you are needed” to _______________ (fulfill the mission i.e. give hope, heal kids, etc.).

This simple shift in mindset from what the organization needs (fundraising) to what the donor believes (vision casting) will make a significant impact in your fundraising.

If you are vision caster and someone responsible for raising money, consider attending the Vidare Creative Training Camp July 25 & 26 in Nashville, TN. For more information,visit:

This post originally appeared as an article on


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