Gossip Is … Good?
Where else could a donor go for this?
Something only YOU can do
You want to strengthen your relationship with your donors? Gossip.
Well, maybe we should define “gossip.”
If it’s “information the donor can’t get anywhere else,” gossip is a good thing.
Any ministry in the world can say, “Here’s what we’re doing; please support it. And when you give, I’ll send you this wonderful [whatever]….”
- But only you can tell the story of a family touched and transformed by the love of God through your unique ministry.
- Only you can tell how your heart broke as you witnessed the crying need of an individual — and how your heart soared as you saw that life restored … by the grace of God, through the generous giving of your ministry family.
- Only you can tell what the Lord is doing inside your ministry, where He’s leading you, what’s on the horizon.
The more you share how your ministry is unique — unlike other ministries — the more your donors will connect to it.
If someone gives an initial gift to your work, and yours seems to be the only ministry doing exactly what you’re doing, the donor has little choice but to continue supporting you in order to support that type of effort.
Obviously this doesn’t mean you run down other ministries in your communications with donors. (Besides being ungodly, it usually results in an ugly backlash.) But it does mean that you continually push to reflect the specific accomplishments of your ministry.
- Let me meet the individuals impacted by the work.
- Let me see the specific changes in people’s lives that have come about as a result of this ministry.
- Take me behind the scenes, into your heart, into the hearts of those whose lives will never be the same because this ministry intersected with them at some wonderful point in time!
- If I find myself inspired by such results, I have to support you — and keep on supporting you.
A young man tried his hand at the travel business for a while. He stood up at a local Chamber of Commerce breakfast during the “networking” part of the monthly gathering where each member took a moment to describe their business.
“We’re Such-and-Such Travel Agency,” the young man announced. “We have all the bells and whistles…”
What he was telling the group was that his travel agency was just like a bunch of other travel agencies.
What he needed to tell them was how his agency was different from all the rest.
- The more generic your ministry communications are, the more easily your donors can turn to other ministries.
- The more unique your ministry communications are, the more easily your donors can grow deeply involved with your ministry.
Jesus turned His world upside down. Nobody else was saying the things He was saying. He was willing to risk losing some followers (and He did; just look at John 6:66) in order to establish deep and lasting relationships with the rest.
Jesus lived by this somewhat-unorthodox definition of gossip: He offered something that people couldn’t get anywhere else. So should we.