For Impact


Mailbag: If you know prospect has a number, do you ask first?

For Impact Ideas | | Nick Fellers

Got this one from a boot camp alum.

QUESTION: When is it appropriate to do a preemptive BIG ASK?

Going into this visit I knew [prospect] was going to offer $10k. I knew I didn’t even have to ask. In fact, I didn’t ask b/c I was concerned that if I did go for $100k he would say, “Geez, I came here to offer you $10k! Isn’t that pretty generous for a 1st-time gift?”

I don’t think it’s about trying to be preemptive vs. reactive.

I think the answer, instead, is all about nailing the funding rationale.

To make a point that will translate via the blog to all readers…

Let’s say you needed $100,000 to fully fund a project that would save 30 lives. You (for whatever reason) need that money from one funder. You meet with this funder – and know he has capacity. He agrees that this is an important project and gives you a check for $10K before you ask.

What do you do????

Say, THANK YOU. And then proceed to make the case for $100K — because you can rationalize it.

Or, let’s say you’re running a $1M funding round that needs a $100K leader. You meet with someone, he says he loves what you do and you feel he’s your absolute strongest candidate to represent that lead funding position. You need to tell him as much and rationalize to him why you would like to be so bold as to see about the $100K — because it will allow you to bring in other funders… have XYZ impact, etc.