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Securing your existing relationships

Building trust with your existing donors is important, which is helped by the efficient delivery of existing projects, transparent and consistent financial and administrative practices, and a clear and regular articulation of your impact. Your internal systems need to facilitate this.

Exploring new donors

There can be a very slow lead-up time to securing new donors. There is a tendency to prefer trusted organisations, with existing relationships. This does often mean that approaching “cold” through an Open Call for Proposals will not necessarily have a high rate of return. There are a couple of ways of making this easier, like leveraging your existing networks (see Tip A) or approaching new funders in partnership with organisations that they already fund and trust

Diversifying to new revenue streams

There are a lot of different ways to diversify – either by diversifying the source of funding or diversifying your revenue streams. It depends on what your innate skill sets are, and what kind of market there is. The thing to always weigh up is how much a new revenue stream potentially deviates you from your existing impact strategy. Finding those revenue streams which support your vision of change and impact is ideal – potentially through, for instance, paid for training (which help builds your capacity for non-paid-for training with beneficiaries), or revenue streams like subscriptions for existing technology products you have.

Capacitate for your funding strategy

Your human capacity shouldn’t simply be focused on capacity for existing work, but also the capacity needed for your ultimate funding strategy. You need the personnel that can help meet your financial goals.