There is something vulnerable about asking.
We have this adorable little neighbor boy. He wants to play SO bad, but he’s shy and nervous and scared to ask. Sometimes he stands in the driveway and waits to be noticed, but he just can’t seem to get the courage to walk up to the door and knock. Lots of times we see him lurking and send the kids out to him. Last week, he finally made it to the porch, and he stood there waiting patiently to be noticed. My husband and daughter were sitting at the table, finishing up homework, when they spotted him. Instead of sending, my daughter outside, my husband caught the boys attention and motioned to the door and mouthed the words, “Knock and Ask.”
It can be scary, but when we ask something directly, we are much more likely to get a solid and confirmed yes.
This is obviously true in our personal lives, but it seems to be less obvious in our professional and fundraising lives. We as a culture rely heavily on mass productions to orchestrate communication and invites: email campaigns, social media posts, links to events, etc. This type of communication does have its place, but at the center, we should be striving to personally connect with people because people respond best to personal connection.
According to Vanessa Bohns, assistant professor of Organizational Behavior at Cornell University, in her Harvard Business Review article, asking in person is significantly more effective. She says:
A face to face request is 34 times more successful than an email
“Despite the reach of email, asking in person is the significantly more effective approach; you need to ask six people in person to equal the power of a 200-recipient email blast. Still, most people tend to think the email ask will be more effective.”
Email takes the personal interaction out of the ask and while it may make the sender feel more comfortable, it does little for the recipient.
People have more buy-in power when they can see the passion and understand the story behind the ask.
The Boy Scouts of America have perfected the personal ask. Not only, do the boys tote their product with them, donning adorable outfits, they knock on doors, spout their rehearsed spiel about funding adventures, and then hand over their product list, saying, “which product would you like?” Assumptive and Effective. My little man is at a 100% close rate. Meaning, EVERY person he asked to buy popcorn, has said YES.
Sometimes we JUST need to ASK.
Now obviously it isn’t quite this easy for all organizations. Most of us are not adorable, and we do not have popcorn to trade for donation collections. Let’s be honest, the Boy Scouts have it easy.
I would love to be able to help you emulate the Boy Scouts and provide you with a plethora of sales-minions who work solely for the prospect of bringing home glow in the dark fidget spinners, but alas, I cannot.
Sometimes we just don’t have the ability to make physical contact, and as much as I would like to, I cannot help you recreate that personal ask.
But… I can help you get personal.
The Gyve Application allows you to gain intimate contact with your people and showcase the amazing things your organization is doing. You can send texts, pictures, videos, and emails, directly to your donors and keep them completely up to date and involved in what your organization is doing. You can encourage them and share with them how their donations are making an impact in one quick message. It may not be a personal ask, but it is very personal for our digital world. Gyve offers three different donation options: one-time, recurring, and roundup. The variety makes it appealing to all different levels of donors and it broadens your donation pool. We are not simply offering a different way for your current givers to give, we are expanding your market and making it desirable for NEW givers to be a part of your adventure.
Want to know more about the Gyve program, and how we can help your organization create a culture of generosity?