When I was a full-time fundraiser, there were many things that I was expected to be an expert on: our mission, the reasons behind the need we served, how to raise money, budgeting, planning, public speaking, writing, and so much more.

Most importantly, I had to know everything about the ins-and-outs of our cause and our community.

You probably feel the same way.

Sometimes it can be overwhelming, but being seen as the expert by your volunteers and donors is imperative to instill the trust required to build relationships and make those transformational gifts.

This applies not only to you, the fundraiser, but also to the executive director, the entire staff and even the Board of Directors.

So, what is the best way to be perceived as the expert?expert bulletin board - Sandy Rees, Fundraising Coach

Hands down it is producing high-quality content and sharing what you know with everyone you can.

You can communicate your expertise through your website, newsletters, public presentations, media interviews, and even special events.

In fact, the better job you do at setting yourself up as the expert, the more likely the media will call you first when they want an opinion on your area of expertise!

Think about ways you can showcase your knowledge and educate your donors (and the general public) about your cause so they not only are empowered to give, but also have the confidence that you will use that gift properly.

When you write, strive to shoot for a good balance between demonstrating your expertise and being relevant and interesting to your reader. Ultimately, your writing needs to build trust, deepen relationships, and compel people to give.

How do you know when you’ve reached your writing goals?

You’ll know.

People will tell you how much they enjoyed your presentation. They’ll comment on your blog. They’ll send in more gifts after they read your newsletter.

You’ll see your fundraising results go up and up, and you’ll know you’re being the expert.

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