Just take 5 days. Make as many phone calls as you can, reaching out to your major donors to schedule a time to meet with them in person – and write down their responses. By the end of that week you will amass a very long list of stalls, put-offs and rejections. And as long as you work in development you’ll hear pretty much those same objections, worded in slightly different ways, an endless number of times.
There’s a great joy in drawing donors into deeper levels of partnership with your organization, but being on the receiving end of a day filled with repeated rejections to your request for a meeting can leave you depressed and frustrated.
How do you handle those put-offs? Does it cause you to avoid making calls? Do you get a little knot in your stomach every time you pick up the phone to make another donor call?
Do you give up calling and try to contact donors via email instead? You know that none of these are the best solution. But what can you do? I’m glad you asked!
You can’t change people’s natural bents toward side-stepping commitment, feeling too busy, and knee-jerk avoidance lines. However, you can prepare come-backs to those common objections and turn the conversation around.
Carefully Crafted Phone Scripts
The secret to successfully engaging donors on the phone is to script out a few carefully worded responses to each category of objection – and then memorize them. DON’T try reading them while you’re on the phone with a donor – you’ll sound like a telemarketer just trying to sell them something. Your responses have to come from the heart. They must be authentic.
Now that you’ve scripted out some come-backs to the objections your donors give you, start working on scripting your opening lines. But don’t stop there, script out some sample emails, thank-you notes, letters, encouragements, etc. In the end, you will have a file filled with great material that will super-charge your phone conversations.
Over time, continue to build out your phone scripts. Try them out – on a friend, a spouse, or even read them to yourself in a mirror. Re-write and improve them. I promise if you diligently follow this advice you will drastically decrease the number of times you hang up from a failed attempt at engaging your donors more deeply on the phone.
Want some specific samples of how to handle objections? Download your free copy of Overcome 8 Major Donor Objections To Meeting Ebook >>