#VMGCorporatesLive: Tips for building a strong relationship

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Long term relationships can be extremely lucrative for charities and save the stress of selecting and pitching to new corporates. Here’s our top 10 tips to turn your corporate fundraising partnership into something sustainable and long term.

1. Build a wider network.

As well as dealing with Corporate Social Responsibility Managers, are there people who look after community objectives, HR contacts etc.? The more people you know, the more opportunities you can create.

2. Keep in regular contact

Make communication a top priority. Updates on planned activities and concise regular communications will keep you front of mind.

3. Suggest new ideas / opportunities

New opportunities such as volunteering, presenting an award, meeting your trustees etc. will help you maintain a high level of engagement.

4. Go to the top

Are you sure your updates, news of your successes etc are making it all the way to the top of the organisation? Can you produce a report, update, personal thank you card etc. that lends itself to being shared with a senior team?

5. Keep one eye on the future

Sharing a long term vision can be powerful. Even if you can’t continue as Charity of the Year, can you suggest ways in which the corporate can continue to support you?

6. Knowledge is Power

What are the objectives/plans/issues/benefits of the corporate? Getting under the skin of an organisation will not only help you think of activities that may be of use, but it also help you sound knowledgeable and engaged when you talk to them.

7. If you say you’re going to do something, do it

Putting in that initial research at the beginning of the process means you won’t overpromise. With any relationship, proving you’re a reliable partner is crucial so be sure to meet agreed deadlines and objectives.

8. Provide meaningful updates

Sending additional information and sharing milestones (such as amount raised to date) will provide your corporate with invaluable assets.

9. Make it as hard as possible to break up!

“Tell me something and I’ll forget it, show me something and maybe I’ll remember it, involve me and I will remember it” – Confucius.  If people feel part of something, it makes it harder to let it go.

10. Learn from feedback

Encourage feedback on your partnership and use the information to suggest ways of continuing the successes to date and improve your relationship management.


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