How do you “inspire” someone to give big?
How can we transition effectively from sharing this spectacular vision to actually making our ask?
For those of you who’ve been biting their nails in suspense since last Sunday, allow me to take you out of your misery. Here’s how to transition smoothly and effectively from storytelling to soliciting:
Step 1: The Soft Share
The “Soft Share,” as I call it, is the part where you share your vision (learn more about that in last week’s post). It’s all about planting a seed of inspiration in the heart and mind of the prospect you’re speaking with.
Of course, seeds can take a while to bear fruit. You might find you need more than one vision-sharing conversation before your prospect is fully ready to hear your ask.
How do you determine your prospect’s readiness?
By paying close attention to his reaction when you make your soft share. And, more specifically…
Step 2: The Gauge
After making your soft share, ask this simple question:
“How does that sound?”
Here’s your chance to gauge how “inspired” your prospect really is. Is he excited about your cause? Or at least on board with it?
Or, does he seem to have some doubts, some questions?
Depending on his response, you’ll know how to move forward.
If he seems a bit unconvinced, you know you need to work on him more.
You need to address his objections. Share your vision a bit more specifically, perhaps with some real stories. You might even need to close the conversation and re-open it at a different time.
If, however, he’s clearly taken by your vision, you’re ready for…
Step 3: The Call to Action
The Call to Action is exactly what it sounds like – a direct request to do something. A request for funds or a referral to a big prospect.
“It looks like what I’ve shared resonates with you. Would you join me in making this vision a reality by considering a gift of $xx,xxx?”
“Could you help me make this vision a reality by making an intro for me to your brother-in-law?”
Of course, delivering your Call to Action with confidence isn’t always easy.
So – practice!
Speak it out beforehand. Write it out, and repeat it several times. Run it by trusted people who can give you constructive feedback.
Soon, you’ll have mastered both parts of “inspiring others to give:” sharing your vision, and translating it into a request that gets granted.