Big Problems Generate Small Gifts

world poverty

You may have heard of the fundraising technique called “fundcrushing.”  It was presented to me recently as a novel way to raise money.

fundcrushing is based on the mistaken assumption that your prospective donors will respond if they know truly how huge the challenge is you want to solve.

Let your supporters know just how cosmic, just how tremendous your project is and they will rush to be a part of it.


A problem that is overwhelmingly huge—solving “world poverty”, for example—is actually an incentive not to give.

How’s that?

“Huge” is relative.  Telling folks that you need $10,000 per day to keep the doors open for a small community organization is huge.  Telling them that people generally contribute $10, is something doable.

Fundraising results going down as the problem gets larger is what is called the “drop in the bucket” effect.  “My modest gift (the donor defines modest) couldn’t possibly make a dent in solving world poverty,” they say.

People give to people.  They do not give to ideas or cosmic visions of the future.

People give gifts to see results—the results in the lives of individuals.  They do not give to an abstract concept.  For example, “world poverty”, whatever that is.

Principle 2 of The Eight Principles™ is Begin at the Beginning.  The way you present what you want to achieve makes all the difference.  Present from the donor’s point of view.

So, if you are out to change the world, like ending world poverty for instance, do it in manageable steps for your investors.  Let them see the light at the end of the tunnel. The funny thing is, the more doable the step, the more you raise.

Now that is a sustainable fundraising idea.

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