I often talk about the 3 R’s of Grant Seeking: Research, Relationships, and wRiting. The point of the 3 R’s of Grant Seeking is that you need to follow the three steps with every potential application whether for a new funding partner or for an existing funding partner. Here are our 5 tips to improve your grant funder relationships:
1 - Contact your potential funding source prior to applying (whether a new or existing relationship!). Follow their communication preference and capacity guidelines regarding communication. Bottom line, ALWAYS call or email to talk about if your proposal will be competitive if they will allow such a dialogue.
Focus on creating impact. #funderrelationships #valentinesday
3 – Be sincere. Always. In all interactions. Enough said.
4 – Always meet deadlines. No exceptions. Set false internal deadlines for yourself. Look over the Finance Department’s shoulder related to submitting grant billings. Look over the Program Department’s shoulder related to submitting midterm or final reports. Do not miss deadlines. Even when extensions are given or late submissions are still accepted, your funder will remember your tardiness, yet not the situations that brought about the missed deadline.
5 – Utilize and promote your work and their work via social networks. When appropriate, promote both your grant funded work as well as your funder’s other work via the social networks where your grant seeking organization is active. In particular, focus on doing so on networks where both your grant seeking organization AND the funder are active. Both on Twitter? Excellent! Tweet about grant awards, grant project successes, and retweet information about research shared by the funder. Both on Facebook? Fabulous! Share success stories about funded programs with lots of photos, tag and thank the funder in the post about the successful project.
Following these five tips as part of your grant seeking efforts and larger grant maker relationship building efforts will definitely help increase your grant revenue…but don’t forget…“We love our funders, but funders are human too!”
We love our #funders, but funders are human too! #funderrelationships #valentinesday
Do you have any other tips or suggestions on how grant seeking organizations can improve their grant funder relationships? Please share them with us in the comment section below.
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