How do you go about raising support? It’s not a one-time activity– it’s a process involving several steps. Here’s a proven approach:
Start by making a list of people. Consider those you’ve influenced or had a relationship with, people you’ve led to Christ or mentored. Remember family, friends, and colleagues. Then prioritize that list.
Then make a connection– the more personal the better. Face-to-face is the best, a skype conversation is next best, then phone. You can start that process with an email, but make it a simple, short email casting a little bit of vision. Don’t give them all of the information about your ministry; all you’re trying to accomplish in an email is to get an appointment. Give them just enough information so they know you’re coming about the possibility of their making an investment in this ministry.
After the email, follow up with a phone call to try to get an appointment set. Keep working through your list in this way. Keep making calls: X number of calls per day or X number of connections per week. Be intentionally and consistent.
When you have an appointment, sit down with the person and share the vision and the plan. Now is the time to be specific, but be specific about the right things. They don’t need to know all the details of the “how,” but they do need to get a clear picture of the “what” and the “why.” Clarify what the benefits will be for the Kingdom. Make sure they know what your goals are– how you will be determining whether the ministry is successful. Also specify how long their commitment will be.
Don’t stop with the sharing. After you’ve shared, ask, “Is this the kind of ministry you’d like to invest in?” Then– and this is equally important– wait for their answer. Don’t say anything and don’t keep talking.
Most often people will say they need to pray about it. Then ask, “Can I follow up with you next Friday?” or some other specific time. End by thanking them.
Engage in pro-active follow up. If you’ve told someone you’ll follow up on Friday, then call them on Friday. Put it on your calendar.
Part of the “pay” for people who give to ministries is the communication from you. You need to promise– and follow through on– regular communication. That means not less than monthly. The communication from you is what keeps those who support your ministry going, especially the intercessors. Be sure to send regular reports, along with thank you notes, to keep their ministry investment in front of them.