Donors Flock to Reliability, Predictability, and Trust

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Organizations that Thrive Have One Thing In Common

It’s tempting to think about marketing as a collection of traditional outreach. Sure, part of it is which we have been offering for years. Display ads, postcards, surveys, tag lines, digital media, videos—the list goes on. But marketing is more than that. Marketing also includes things you might not immediately think of, such as:

  • The landscaping and signage outside your building
  • The way your volunteers explain your mission to someone in line at the grocery store
  • Your executive director’s presence at a rotary club meeting

All of these send a message about who you are. In other words, it’s all marketing.

Endowment as Marketing

An endowment delivers to a nonprofit a dependable, predictable source of revenue each year. Organizations with endowments know they will cover at least part of their future financial needs with the investment returns from these endowed funds.

But an endowment gives you more than money. An endowment gives you a reputation. An endowment sends a motivating message to your board, staff, donors, and your community. It says your organization is going to be here for the long run. You have prepared for and are looking to the future. You have set aside funds that will grow and provide needed mission-directed money for years. You will be here for those you serve.

Simply by its existence, an endowment is a mighty marketing statement.

Fear Not

Perhaps it is because of the powerful nature of an endowment, and the statement it creates, that many organizations do not have one. They are afraid establishing an endowment may be too complicated, or that it will be difficult to manage. They believe there must be some mystical energy around endowments only a select few organizations can harness. Sometimes the allure of accepting (and spending) all donations today, tempts organizations with the fleeting comfort that tomorrow will take care of itself. They may believe there is no need to have an endowment.

But organizations that thrive have one thing in common: They have endowments.              

Along with future income, endowments provide nonprofits with additional benefits. Donors give more to an organization they trust; one with sound management and an eye toward the future. They give more to all areas, not just to the endowment. And they give because nothing says you will be here tomorrow like an endowment. Donors flock to reliability and predictability.

When you establish an endowment, you will feel confident knowing you’ve secured future income for the mission—and you will notice how enthusiastically your board, staff and donors respond.

Endowments create a brighter future and a brighter now.  As Deb Ashton said it, “It’s all about endowments. But most nonprofits do not get it.”

All of our blogs, products and services are proudly conceived, created, reviewed, and disseminated by real humans — not A.I. (artificial “intelligence.”)

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