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Jack Eason
The Heart Share Group

It's That Time Of Year

 

 


Fundraising season is upon us for our non-commercial Christian radio stations. The next several weeks our team will be helping ministries around the country raise money to meet their ministry needs. As we approach this most critical time of year, I have a few observations for you to consider. Some of these come from listening to a radio “share-a-thon” recently.



1-If you haven’t been connecting with your partners all year long, don’t expect too much during your fundraiser.

I hear stations that slide into “begging” mode during their fundraisers and I wonder how well they have connected during the year. One station I recently spoke with said they were going to increase the on air need for this year’s fundraiser by $100,000. I asked them, ‘What have you done since last year to connect with listeners that would make them want to give you $100,000 more than they did last year?” Silence. Crickets. Just because your needs increase doesn’t mean the listeners HAVE to meet it. You have to serve them. And I don’t mean showing up at a concert, playing great music, or being their friend on facebook. I mean real connections.

 

2-You really need to consider how you sound on air during your fundraising event.

If you don’t know that fundraising has changed in the last couple of years, then you probably are going about it all wrong. Fundraising has changed because the world has changed. And the world has changed because the people in the world have changed. What worked 2-3 years ago probably isn’t working now. I heard a station recently during their on air fundraiser and it sounded the same as it did five years ago. Same techniques, same brow-beating to give, same over the top production elements. Go out and talk to some 20-somethings or 30-somethings. Find out how to communicate to that audience. If we are worried about the future of Christian radio and we want next generation listeners, we need to know how to communicate to them and how they think. Educate yourself.

3-If we never sound spiritual all year (because we want to reach people, we say), then being spiritual during your fundraiser makes you sound like a hypocrite.

 If we never talk about spiritual things all year long on our station “so we can reach the masses,” and then we try use phrases like “help our ministry” and “share the message of hope” during our fundraiser, people will never buy it. Be consistent. You can reach more people (be funny, relevant, and entertaining) AND be the ministry that your station is called to be. If you need an example, listen to my friend Bill Sammons and his team at 88.7 The Bridge in Delaware.

 

You are asking people to give you money during your fundraiser. You better have a good reason.

 

If our team can serve your ministry in any way, get in touch.

 


Jack Eason is the President of The Heart Share Group and his team raises millions of dollars a year for Christian ministries including Christian radio, missions organizations, children’s homes and more. Find out more at www.theheartsharegroup.com


 

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