Four Simple Tips to Build Relationships with Grant Funders

June 7, 2018

It came!  That grant proposal that you slaved over for three weeks has resulted in a check for $25,000!

You’re particularly psyched because this was your third proposal to the XYZ Foundation (the first two were declined) and it feels like this grant has been years in the making.  Your hard work has paid off at last!

So how can you make sure that this grant from the XYZ Foundation isn’t their last?

1.  Send a thank you note

Yes, a thank you note is the way to go. No crystal plaques or flowers, please.  Thank the foundation for their partnership in no uncertain terms.  Going the hand-written route is nice because adds a personal touch, especially in the age of email and technology.

2. Add the funder to your database

While you never want to deluge the funder with all the communications your individual donors receive, you do want to keep them updated on your progress.  They’ve presented you with an opportunity for a long-term relationship, so build on it. Think about repurposing specific content and developing a short “foundation letter” that spells out the impact of their funding, and send it out once or twice a year to current (and past!) foundation funders.

3. Send in your report on time

Please, please, please, don’t make the funder come after you for your report. And please go ahead and show them that you did what you said you’d do.

4. Was a contract included?

Make sure that any contracts included with your check are sent back, appropriately filled out and in a timely fashion.

Is that all? Well, it doesn’t have to end there. Go celebrate!  You deserve it!

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