Daxko recently hosted a NAYDO Webinar Series with Dave Bell, Executive Director of the Downtown Louisville Family YMCA. Dave spoke on the topic: How Summer Camp Taught Me to Raise More Money.
Webinar participants learned how Dave’s history working with YMCA camps taught him lessons about engaging with members, donors, and ultimately made him a better fundraiser. The full webinar is available to view, but we’ve also compiled some key takeaways.
So, what can we learn from camp that can help fundraisers?
Working at resident camp, you often only see families of campers either on check-in or checkout day. That means, in a best-case scenario, you only see these families twice a year. It’s important to set goals around interacting with these families. To do this, Dave had to empower his team to deal with small things that would come up throughout that day so that he could be accessible to these families and able to engage with them on check-in and checkout days. How does this translate to his work as a branch executive? Dave makes a point to be visible and engaged with members at his branch during peak times. He also works a 4-hour shift at the membership desk each week where he scans members in, takes prospective members on tours, and remains engaged and involved with members.
At camp, Dave set a goal of meeting 10 families on check-in day and 10 on checkout day. During the week of camp, he would send the people he met a handwritten note. He would try to mention how their child was doing to let them know he made that connection and he remembered them. Writing personal notes is something that Dave still does as a branch executive and it goes a long way towards building solid relationships.
Once you meet an individual that seems genuinely interested in what you have to say, a good next step is to dig into those individuals. Don’t be afraid to find out more about what they do, where they work, and what other causes they might be interested in.
Another takeaway from camp is to check back in with those you have met and spoken to. Dave would use checkout day as another opportunity to engage with each camper and their family. At your association, you can follow this advice by setting aside time each week to interact with new connections. Make a concentrated effort to keep track of connections on paper or in software like Daxko Engage, which allows you to make notes on connections that other users can access.
At camp, Dave explained, it’s about relationships. Campers come back every year because of the people: the counselors, the friends they have made. So, taking the time to make connections like that with your members yields great rewards.
The full webinar is packed with more great tips and tricks. To find more insights from Dave Bell’s NAYDO webcast, we encourage you to watch the entire webcast that is available in NAYDO’s webinar library.